Monday, December 25, 2006

A Pre-Trip All-Nighter

I am the worst packer in the world. I go through like three stages of packing. First, I pack things that don't require a lot of decision-making, like toiletries and workout clothes. Then I make giant piles of all the clothes I think I want to take with me. And then finally, I say to myself, you cannot take all this with you, pick the necessities. It takes several hours. Soooooo, here I am, 2 am on Christmas Day, packing. As such, I will regale you with a pre-trip blog.

I spent about 24 hours at home. In that time, my parents equipped me with a suitcase, a cell phone that works in China, some Chinese money they had (b/c they travel there a lot), and countless words of warning.

To wit:

- If you're going to give money to panhandlers, watch out, b/c once you give to one, a thousand more will swarm to you.
- Don't feel bad for the panhandlers, especially the children. Many of them were kidnapped from the countryside, had their limbs lopped off, and are basically panhandling hos for some panhandling pimp.
- Don't eat the seafood; it will kill you.
- Don't drink the water; it will kill you.
- Don't eat the chives; they will kill you.
- Don't eat the carrots; they are so ridden with pesticides and growth hormones that they continue to grow in their packaging; they will kill you.
- Don't pay the posted price for anything; they are marked up 1000%; haggle, haggle, haggle; it will kill you.
- Don't wear one of those money-belts; they will be cut off of you.
- If you need to change money, do it at a bank or they will give you counterfeit money.
- They have Starbucks in the big cities.

I don't know how much of this is true, but it's taking all my worldly sensibilities not to fall into the trap of my childhood where I believed everything they said because they were my parents. I was a stupid, stupid child.

Oh, and


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