User Comments - xiaoma88

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Posted on: A Trip to Nanjing
May 04, 2011, 03:33 PM

Nanjing is a great place! I thought the taxi drivers and shop assistants were like my best friends compared to when I lived in Shanghai!

When you buy things in small Shanghai convenience shops the assistants don't even look at you and just put your change on the desk.  Taxi drivers avoid you.

I learnt loads of Chinese from taxi drivers in Nanjing.

Good lesson though!

I remember other interesting foods like 旺鸡蛋 (wang ji dan - I think) which is possibly a half developed baby chick boiled and fried.  On the nice side, there was mei hua gao?  I can't remember clearly and don't know the characters or tones.

Posted on: Politely Declining an Invitation
December 18, 2010, 10:42 PM

hello xiao_ma

Posted on: Politely Declining an Invitation
December 14, 2010, 10:39 AM

Sometimes in English, certainly British English, if you want to politely decline someone it sounds better to pad out the rejection a bit so instead of saying:

"Sorry, I've got something."

You would say

"I'm very sorry, but there's something I really must do over the weekend..."

And even then one may continue describing briefly what exactly it is they must do and why they can't attend what you've invited them to.

Is this ever the case in China?  For example, can you really just say, "boss, I need a day off because I've got 'something'" and expect them to approve it?

Posted on: Politely Declining an Invitation
December 14, 2010, 10:28 AM

What would be the difference between




since translating the meaning of the first one seems to be 'On the weekend I'm busy'.

Posted on: Transportation Card
December 12, 2010, 08:13 PM

Using the Nanjing transportation card you got a discount of 20% (or八折 bāzhéas they say in China) so a ride on the bus would cost about 0.8 or 1.6 yuan instead of 1 or 2 yuan.

In London a journey on a bus with the Oyster card is about 12 yuan, without it you need to pay about 20!

A day pass for all transport in London starting at 'peak time' will cost you over 150yuan! Ouch.

Despite the expense though travelling around London is great. Apart from all the bus stops there are so many tram, train, overground and underground stops that you're always close to a station. Even the bus stops all have great maps so you can easily get anywhere.

I love it!

If you want to plan a journey the website is really good too! Check it out:

Blimey, I really sound like an advert!

Posted on: Skincare: Moisturizing Cream
December 11, 2010, 10:32 PM

Thanks, I think my avatar could do with some of it!

Posted on: Slippery Ground
December 11, 2010, 10:20 PM

On a sign near an escelator going upwardsin a supermarket I saw the following"小心碰头" (xiǎoxīnpèngtóu) which means "be careful not to bang your head".

It also had the helpful translation "carefully bang your head".

The sign I love though, not because it's wrong, but because it's quite original. Signs saying 'please don't walk on the grass' often personify the grass (make the grass sound like a person)!

I knicked these off the net:

Ahhh, makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, doesn't it?

Although the grass in this picture doesn't look so happy to me!

Posted on: You Sing Terribly!
December 11, 2010, 09:17 PM

I really thought the song was going to be 'Hotel California'. I used to hear that song everywhere.

Can no one hear it now?

"On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair.."

Does no one remember hearing:

"I'm a big big girl in a big big world, it's not a big big thing if you leave me..."

Or surely, someone must have heard - and I can't accept no for an answer on this - the following, but in chinese.

"I love you, I really do, just like the mouse loves the rice..."

Below is a slightly bizarre video but it has English subtitles! If you haven't already heard it, or even if you have, why not sit back and enjoy this - one of many - sickeningly soppy pop songs!

老鼠爱大米 lao shu ai da mi

Posted on: This Needs to be Dry Cleaned
December 11, 2010, 08:33 PM

It was a few years ago (几年以前) but I think I remember getting my suit dry cleaned in Nanjing for about 17 yuan!  Now I'm back in the UK though it's comparatively expensive although the Persian guy that runs the place is really nice.

P.S. Just thought I'd give the jǐ character '几' a shot for another example

Posted on: Skincare: Moisturizing Cream
December 07, 2010, 07:32 PM

I just use whatever moisturiser I can get my hands on.

It seems to me the smaller the body part the more expensive the cream - eye cream is ridiculously expensive!

So is there a word for general moisturiser?