The Day I Realized a YeYe Can Kick My Ass

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Flag of China  , Shanghai,
Tuesday, October 12, 2010

This blog is a dedication blog. I dedicate this blog to a few topics: grandmothers, friends and all you can consume dinners.

Now, I'm sure that I am not alone when I say that the grandmother - of the species Homo Sapien; born of the era pre-World War 2; of the female gender - is the toughest human on Earth.  I can only think of my own dear grandma in Austria - a farm hand who, while toiling away at our family farm for the last 60 years, always manages to keep her arthritis in check, and send me birthday Euro every year.  But I digress.

This blog is not about my grandmother.  This blog is about the chinese grandmother - or yeye ( pronounced YeahYeah)  Not like Ice-Cube saying yeayea'r...more like, yaya shut up and get on with it.  So, the 
YeYe, all 4'11 of her, riddled with what appears to be: osteoporosis, arthritis, gingivitis and is as long in the tooth as she is close to the ground rules the Chinese roost.  She commands the streets with a subtle aggression that is hardly matched, and never surpassed - unless it's a worn-out wageuiren ( foreigner) such as myself angrily getting onto the Metro during National Holiday.  

There is something very special about witnessing this hobbit sized, prune-faced, be-whiskered old woman walking down the street with what seem to be kleenex boxes for shoes, carrying in each hand what can only be described as two Thanksgiving Turkey sized Durian - without a bag. For those of you who aren't familiar with the Durian, its fruit that looks like Bowser's shell from Mario, and it smells like the dilapidated remains of your Campbell's Cream of Chicken soup you left in your Ghostbusters thermos over Xmas break as a kid in grade 3...You all did that.  Shut up already.  

Anyways, back to Gollom.  She waddles down the street, swinging her Durian.  And spits.  And shouts.  And scares the crap out of you.  By the time I get my ass out of my scratcher ( a scotch term for bed I just learned about thanks to a Scottish team mate) the YeYe has done her shopping, eating dinner, cleaned her teeth on the street, and told off a bus driver or two along the way I am sure.  

Sometimes they seem cute.  And I want to hug them.  Other times they seem not so cute.  And let's just say, I do not want to hug them.  I just want them to leave me alone.

So thanks YeYe...you make my every complaint about transportation, hygiene and ways of life seem like a complete waste of breathe, energy and time.  Which I guess they are anyways.  Ah, they are so wise.

Onto my next train of thought.  While away, it is entirely expected and not at all unlikely that you develop a yearning for home.  This happened a few days back when Turkey dinner was looming, and my baby sister's 19th birthday was going on at the Blarney Stone.  Now if there is two things I love in life its a Turkey dinner, and an excuse to party; Nina's 19th being no exception to that at all.  

Well judging by Nina's voice, the party was a great success and I want to take the time to thank my friends who helped??? her cause that evening.  Friends, you are worth a million RMB.  That's approximately 300,000 dollars.  Love it!

And lastly, China is home to something that would never fly in Canada.  The most glorious advent since the creation of skype which keeps me in touch with friends I could never afford to call otherwise: all you can eat
and drink.  Ex-squueze me?  All you can drink?  Sound the gong!!!  For years in Canada we have been forced to eat all we can at lunch...or all we can eat at night at Uncle Willy's House of Heat lamps.  Wow do I miss that place.  But all you can eat and drink for  ten bucks?  East Indian cuisine with all you can drink beer?  Yes please!  Japanese food – all sorts, with bottomless Kirin and Sake!  Um, sure!  Viva life!

So, to wrap it up: grandma's rule; friends rule; all you can eat and drink rules!

Please come visit


My friends...Zaijian.

Chairman Luke

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