Only in China

So I know you all are dying to hear more of what China is really like. Well, I’m here with the scoop.

China is a great place to live. Not only are there five gazillion people everywhere all the time, but there are some things about China that you just won’t find anywhere else.

1. Trees in the middle of the road.

It doesn’t even align with the other trees. It’s just….there! (note the garbage bicycles in the background).
Same tree. Definitely in the road.

I don’t know what this country’s obsession is with trees, but they have them everywhere. In parking lots, sidewalks, the middle of the road. . .

Wouldn’t it make more sense to have the parking space?

They’re all like, “Ooh, wonderful tree! Who cares if I nearly cream my car just getting into the parking lot?!” (And don’t ask about getting out–let’s just say I’m thankful I don’t have a car here.)

Trees in parking lot.
A little close for comfort, in my opinion. 

2. Funny little garbage bicycles.

They’re not very practical when it’s windy, either.

These trike thingies with a bed on the back still look funny to me every time I see them. Surely it must be more efficient to get rid of garbage in huge trucks than on teeny bicycles? But no–bicycles are the way to go. Plus, you can stack them like crazy to fit even more stuff on!DSC_0172

3. Parking on the sidewalks

These people are using both options–sidewalk and middle of the road. In the right of the picture is the edge of a truck–also parked in the middle of the road.

When your parking lots are full of trees, where else are you supposed to park? Well, the sidewalk is a good place to start.

Yes, that is a sidewalk too.

If you can’t find an empty space in the parking lot, just find your closest sidewalk. If that’s been taken, well, the middle of the road is probably your next best option. Just let the pedestrians and bikers figure out how to get around you. It’s their problem, not yours.


This person couldn’t decide whether the sidewalk or the middle of the road was best, so they settled on a compromise.

4. Random junky areas.

Right in front of our building.

Cats are celebrities here. There’s one who is always sitting outside when we go by on our way to the swimming pool. He usually has a few Chinese girls petting him and leaving offerings. He’s almost like the mascot cat.

This junky-ness also happens to be a cat shelter maintained by one of the neighbors. In the summer, the cats bask on top of it in the warmth of the sun. In winter, they disappear. I assume they’re slumbering within the depths (what, you say I shouldn’t use pretentious words when I tell my students not to? Hooey.) or waiting for their next meal to be brought to them by their lady-in-waiting. I think there may be around twenty cats that use this shelter regularly.

I think it’s all just trash, piled up to make a house. 

I hope you enjoyed my little tour through three blocks of China. That’s right–all these pictures were taken within three blocks of each other, on a university campus, no less. It’s even scarier out in the real world!

Until next time!

9 thoughts on “Only in China

  1. Carson

    Hi Annika,
    I’m a bit behind and just catching up on your life in China. I LOVE your photos. The image of the random junky spot in front of your building is beautiful. Maybe you should be applying for jobs as a photographer! We really miss you and Jared. Please give him our love and take some for yourself while your at it : ) !

  2. Pingback: Only in China: Chinglish Edition | Milk and Pickles

  3. RC

    Annta, this is funny! Thanks for sharing. 🙂 It makes me wonder what idiosyncrasies we have as Americans that the Chinese (or other cultures) would laugh at! They might find it odd that we DON’T park on the sidewalk, or that we don’t care about the tree at all and hack the thing right down when we want to pave over where it once stood! 😀

Tell me what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s