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December, 2009

  1. Home is where your dog is

    December 20, 2009 by admin

    Musing Mandarin is taking a holiday break as I’m in Los Angeles until after New Year’s (non-Chinese new year’s that is).  It’s so wonderful seeing family and friends that I’ve been missing so much.  Alas, Bernie is not here with us so the trip is bittersweet.   Merry Christmas and Happy New Yeeeeeear to everyone.  Be safe and be happy.

    And remember, there is no smoking at the Great Wall, okay?!


  2. You know you’re in a foreign country when…

    December 11, 2009 by admin

    You walk in your house and your dog is missing. Yes, this could happen anywhere I guess, but here I walk out the front door, ask the concierge in the red coats if they’ve seen my dog and they tell you that your Ayi has taken him (which she has never done before).   That could mean many things here if you know what I mean.  I breathed a sigh of relief when they both returned 20 minutes later. I don’t know what would have been worse, losing my dog or losing the person that does the laundry…

    So my friend Natalie’s daughter, the talented and lovely Margaret, drew some pictures for me.



    Yellow-haired lady with dog (that would be me and Bernie)


    Bernardo Diego Cardenas Wong


  3. Are noodles fattening?

    December 8, 2009 by admin

    It seems my body is dying to put on it’s chubber coat for winter.   This “season” thing is bizarre…one REALLY does put their white pants and flip flops to the back of the closet.   Three months ago I was a blistering hot mess and now I’m a shivering, bundled-up mess.

    As I was walking through Xintiandi to get my morning ka fe zai Xing be ke (coffee at Starbucks) there is one particular restaurant that has a speaker outside and they always play American music, even though the restaurant is called Nice (as in the city in France, not a personality trait).  This morning they were blasting Phil Collins (there are some names you think you’ll never have to type, you know what I mean?). “So take a look at me nooooow, there’s just an empty space.  There’s nothing leeeeft here to remiiiind me”  you get the idea.   It just made me want to cry.   Must be that time of the month.

  4. Christmas is definitely coming

    December 3, 2009 by admin



    This lovely creature has nothing to do with Christmas but I had to throw this in and thank you Natalie for having the courage to take it.


  5. Well if that doesn’t beat all

    December 3, 2009 by admin

    I was doing some Christmas shopping and imagine my surprise when I found THIS little shop.  Oh my, I’ll never get your gifts through customs!



  6. I’m just saying

    December 3, 2009 by admin

    In anticipation of the Expo, Shanghai as you know by now is getting a “facelift”.   Not a little botox mind you, we’re talking a lot of Joan Rivers, some Bo Derek and unfortunately, a little Jocelyn Wildenstein in there as well.   I’ve been reading in the paper that the local government is sending out a “pajama patrol” to try to get the locals from wearing their pajamas out in public.  It makes me sad because it’s something I’ve really grown to appreciate and after reading some of their stories about why they do it, it makes sense and it’s still better than pink sweat suits with ugg boots??!!

    I’m just saying, there are many other things the city should be worrying about…like trying to cross the street WITHOUT GETTING MOWED DOWN!   Lord.

    I understand wanting to make everything pretty around here, but “planting” a building is going a bit too far.