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photo by chrismaverick on flickr (http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrismaverick)
Little by little, my life here is starting to feel kind of "normal" to me. I realize I am a creature of habit, and I feel most comfortable when I have a routine established. I think I have that now and it is making a world of difference. There are still difficulties and things that frustrate me, for one my health. I don't think I have been truly 'well' since I've arrived, it's like I have one little affliction after the other. I had a cough that lasted a good month, and just as that is fading, I suddenly have sinuses that feel like they want to escape through my nose and ears. Right between my eyes there is this intense pressure and my ears are popping and squeaking, it's strange. I have a fantasy about drilling a hole on either side of the bridge of my nose and allowing a geiser of snot and air escape. Oh man that would be so so nice. 

I've been introduced to some interesting ideas on health and medicine held by the average chinese person, sometimes the exact opposite of what our western theories dictate. It makes me a little exasperated when I am handed another round of medicines from the pharmacist, as I have no idea what I'm taking, but I am at the mercy of the system here so I just take it. But a lot of advice I receive regarding my health comes from my Chinese friends. Cold drinks are bad for the health, especially women's health. You shouldn't drink while you eat. Illness comes from an imbalance of the body's yin and yang.  A woman on her period should only consume hot foods. And yesterday as I was eating an orange and my friend was reading my medicine box for me, she told me I shouldn't be eating that while I am sick and that oranges are bad for the health. This raised an eyebrow, but I just did what I usually do and said "Oh really? What do you recommend I eat?" Why, eat hot foods and drink hot water, of course (they tell you to drink hot water for everything, lord have mercy)..... Anyway, It's just one of those funny little differences. I grew up believing plenty of orange juice and vitamin C is a good way to boost the immune system and took it for granted as the truth. And now I am somewhere where oranges are bad for you! Who woulda thunk it. Of course that hasn't stopped me from continuing to eat my oranges, even though I KNOW it's an old wives tale that you can do anything about a cold after you've already caught it, but it just makes me feel better! My faith in it has power, it's like I can feel the vitamins rushing into my blood stream and fortifying my white blood cells with super armor or whatever. It's probably how my friend feels when she drinks her scalding water and imagines the healing properties getting to work in her body too. So I'm eating my oranges, chock it up as part of my culture. But I'm taking the mystery pills and drinking the hot water too because...might as well. When in China!
 


Comments

Seth

12/02/2010 05:55:42

Speaking of creatures of habit, Amanda has been doing much better here now that she is cooking regularly. It makes her feel more at home. So far she has lemon chicken and spaghetti down pat.

She also has a thing about being sick as well. She's been coughing the past week, and if its not that then its allergies.

 



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