Crossing a Road

Hi everyone once again

Today’s topic will be crossing a road in China…

You can find endless articles about the terrifying traffic regulation in China, terrible accidents occur on a daily basis everywhere there.  It is dangerous as hell there on the streets!

Now it comes more to my observations over the past years, especially when going around with my mom in law.

First Rule: Chinese drivers will never stop for you if your group is smaller than 10 people

Second Rule: Trusting the rules of a pedestrian crossing (or cross walk) will get you killed

Third Rule: Even if you have green to cross the street, there will be cars, bikes and electric rollers coming from any direction

Fourth Rule: To be on the safe side, don’t go to China 🙂

My mom in law is on a whole different level entirely. For example, she never ever checks if cars are coming, she just walks on the street and wants us to not fall behind (scares the shit out of me every time).

However there are also exceptions, sometimes she does checks if some cars are coming. Whenever a car is far away, lets say you can barely see in the smog ridden distance, mom in law won’t cross the street and will wait for the car/s to pass by. But when she notice that the car/s are just meters away, she storms on the street…

Many cities do have some underground street crossing, especially on the bigger cross roads etc. Those make the survival of the average human being much more likely than the standard suicide street crossing method. I have seen many of those but every time with mom in law they are being ignored and she throws us into the danger of crossing a 10 lane road or something similar, because according to her: “Going down the stairs there is too dangerous!” Well, somehow I doubt that the stairs hold more danger to me than a transportation vehicle coming down the road, only being hold together with duck tape and apparently no brakes…

Another matter is, she also thinks that crossing the street the normal method is so much quicker than going below the road. Yeah, so much quicker, crossing lane by lane can take sometimes 10min or more, depending how many people try the suicide crossing with us. (remember the rule, the bigger the group, the faster the crossing will be in the end)

Problematic with mom in laws approach is that most cross roads with the underground tunnels have some fence or even wall on the street level, intended to stop the pedestrians to enter the road and forcing them into the tunnels. This means that each time we even have to go all around those walls or fences until we reach the end of them, then cross the road, and then walk on the other side all the way back again behind the wall/ fence. So as you can see, I have some reasons to doubt my mom in laws reasoning when it comes to safety on the streets…

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The threat of empty Tupperware containers

Yes, as the title suggests, today topic is the threat of empty Tupperware containers. Those containers are rather useful, you can store all kind of things inside of them.

My wife uses them for her lunch. Every evening, after she’s back from work she makes food for the next day and puts it into those containers. But now comes the trouble: Mom in law…

When they visited us, the first thing she did was to reorganized the kitchen to her liking. This means that she knows where everything is whereas we have no clue (now over a month later we still don’t find everything).

One of those changes in the organization of the kitchen, which was also her main focus: Empty Tupperware containers.

Even though my wife told her that she requires them everyday, mom in law didn’t listen. Every single box had to be filled up with something. In the end we had all kind of things sealed away in those plastic boxes but nothing left for my wife. Alright we thought, lets buy some additional ones, so my wife can take food to work once again. Oh no, mom in law found use for those as well.

She also decided to try out what these containers can do. Her great idea was to fill rice and water into a box and put it into the microwave to make rice for dinner…Yes, I believe you can guess already what happened. An apartment covered in terrible burned smell, a plastic container melted beyond recognition, a messed up microwave and no rice.

After my parents in law went back to China we slowly checked all the plastic containers, to see what is stored inside of them. Some had chocolate bars, others had some walnuts and even some paper slips?!? Yep, definitely weird.

Bargaining

Bargaining – A skill highly common in Asian and Arabic countries…

In my own home country we know some kind of bargaining but it pales compared to what I experienced for example in China. wherever we went together with my mom in law to buy something she tried to get some extras out of it or to lower the price. You may think its okay if its something special like some a bit higher priced electronic equipment, but no, don’t be fooled. She bargains everywhere.

I remember from last year when she wanted to buy a new dust mob for the ever cleaning dad in law. We ended up going through several shopping malls and looking at dozens of different brands and models (I never imagined that product would be so popular in China, as I never see any clean apartments). The sales people tried their best to convince my nice mom in law to buy their product, they showed how easy to use those dust mobs are, how good they clean and so on. Now the thing is, the all have nearly the same price and the sales personnel went as far as giving even extra interchangeable parts which might get worn down after time. But no, they couldn’t convince her to buy it until one sales person offered another unit of some of the interchangeable parts and voila, mom in law bought it immediately.

Once again, as in so many other stories, a normal person might think that this aint so bad…okay…wait for this.

My wife and her mom were discussing about visa regulations. This is because next year our family will finally grow a little bit and mom in law will come to us for three months. Three months because that is the limit someone can stay in Europe with a normal travel visa from China. Both of them were upset because three months are not really that long and we really could use mom in law’s help for some longer time. My wife told her then that after few months break we will invite her again for another three months.

What was mom in law’s reaction then?

“Are you stupid, why waiting?”

My wife then.

“Because you need to get another visa after the 3 month.s”

Mom in law

“Dont be silly, I will just get a longer visa”

Wife

“But mom this is impossible, tourist visa in only valid maximum for 3 months.”

Mom in law

“No no, I will go to the embassy and talk with them, bargain a bit, because this is a special reason with the child so they will give me a longer visa.”

Wife o.O

“What? There is nothing to bargain, visas are fixed, you can’t negotiate on that!”

Mom in law

“Everything can be negotiated.”

Wife

“…”

One of the many examples. I guess I could come up with many more stuff like this about mom in law bargaining but it is just too much.

Anyone else has experienced similar weird stories with their Chinese or Asian families?

My crazy Chinese Family I married into…

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