Monthly Archives: May 2016

Home!! Best. Place. Ever.

Okay, so I’ve been away for the better part of a month.  Between over a week away working nights to two and a half weeks in China, I apologize for the lack of blog.  Didn’t have access in China, and was too bloody tired after working 12 hour night shifts the week+ before that!

FOOD

Let’s just say I’ve had a lot of meal’s out!  I fell in love with a little place in Harrisonburg called Clementine’s, and went there most days while I was on my work trip.

China was a mixed bag.  The concept of vegan is totally foreign, so I struggled some on the food front.  In the hotel in Shanghai, things were fine.  Beijing was a different story.  Breakfast and lunch were pretty good, but dinner usually was watermelon and pickled veggies (hey – it was in the lounge with the free drinks….don’t judge).

last meal I made before my crazy trips!  Vegan lasagna!

last meal I made before my crazy trips! Vegan lasagna!

My Harrisonburg meals…

the Harrisonburger - totally amazeballs

the Harrisonburger – totally amazeballs

cold soba noodle and tofu salad bowl

cold soba noodle and tofu salad bowl

Various eats in China!

my school made this for me - which was a lifesaver, despite the panic it caused everyone I showed it to...

my school made this for me – which was a lifesaver, despite the panic it caused everyone I showed it to…

my most typical breakfast.  A salad and rice congee.

my most typical breakfast. A salad and rice congee.

baked potato and asparagus at a western-style steakhouse one of my last nights in Beijing.

baked potato and asparagus at a western-style steakhouse one of my last nights in Beijing.

green tea soy frap.  This better be  thing in the US, because I loved it!

green tea soy frap. This better be thing in the US, because I loved it!

salad and grilled veggies

salad and grilled veggies

typical dinner - wafer cracker, watermelon, and pickled veggies.

typical dinner – wafer cracker, watermelon, and pickled veggies.

WP_20160515_001

fresh noodle bowl.  This was a regular as my lunch.

fresh noodle bowl. This was a regular as my lunch.

WP_20160508_002

veggie packed dumpling

veggie packed dumpling

more congee

more congee

WP_20160506_006

the purple thing is a steamed purple sweet potato dumpling. Kind of plain, but loved them.

WP_20160506_032 WP_20160506_031

watermelon juice and coffee.  Had this every morning in Shanghai!

watermelon juice and coffee. Had this every morning in Shanghai!

FITNESS

Mostly hotel workouts – runs and yoga.  I did go for a few outside runs in Shanghai in the early mornings – which were pretty good.

I did go for one in the afternoon on the last Friday in Shanghai.  Upon which I was accosted by a man while at a stop-light (this was an area that would remind most of Times Square in NY).  He walked up, grabbed my boobs, and squeezed.  Not wanting to go to jail, I refrained from hitting him…but I did lose it epically.  I mean yelling, cursing, and cursing some more.  As one friend put it, I went “full Irish sailor” on him.  By the end of my tirade, I had about 60 expressionless Chinese nationals staring at me.

It took a few days for me to realize that this mans actions is not typical for anyone in China.  Thinking back on it, he may have been mentally disabled, etc.  In the heat of the moment though, it was hard to see rationally.  I imagine all those gawkers though that I was the one accosting him!

LIFE

Let’s see if I can explain the past month without getting too wordy.  Okay – work trip on night-shift to support a go-live.  It was great, and honestly put me on “china time” way in advance (China is 12 hrs ahead of my time zone)- to the point where I had no jet lag at all!

Then 2.5 weeks in China for my grad school residency.  Aside from classes, we had company tours, touristy tours (Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, The Great Wall), speakers (Frank Langfitt from NPR, the current chairman of the Chinese central bank, and many others), and general fun and mayhem (and hard work).

selfie in an alley market!

selfie in an alley market!

WP_20160520_004 WP_20160520_003

a memory wall at The Great WAll!

a memory wall at The Great WAll!

The Great Wall!   I did yoga in a watch tower!

The Great Wall! I did yoga in a watch tower!

WP_20160518_018

mimosa's on the Great Wall because they threw up a cocktail party.  On the Great Wall.  How surreal is that??

mimosa’s on the Great Wall because they threw up a cocktail party. On the Great Wall. How surreal is that??

WP_20160518_014

me and JG in the gondola up to mountain at the Great Wall

me and JG in the gondola up to mountain at the Great Wall

WP_20160518_009 WP_20160518_006 WP_20160518_002

Tiananmen Square.  We were supposed to go inside, but it was shut down just prior to our arrival.  I was old enough (16 or so) to remember the massacre.  It was a heck of an emotional experience to be there.

Tiananmen Square. We were supposed to go inside, but it was shut down just prior to our arrival. I was old enough (16 or so) to remember the massacre. It was a heck of an emotional experience to be there.

marching soldiers.

marching soldiers.

Chairman Mao

Chairman Mao

The Forbidden City

The Forbidden City

WP_20160517_035 WP_20160517_048

The Great Leap brew put after the Forbidden City!

The Great Leap brew put after the Forbidden City!

WP_20160517_062 WP_20160517_064

Shanghai skyline through the rain and smog

Shanghai skyline through the rain and smog

Went to the Jade Buddha Temple with JG and OPR.  It was amazing.  Got to see monk’s celebrating some rite with their faithful.

WP_20160512_002 WP_20160512_005 WP_20160512_010 WP_20160512_011 WP_20160512_012 WP_20160512_016 WP_20160512_026 WP_20160512_027 WP_20160512_030 WP_20160512_034

Other random pics

N's 40th bday celebration!

N’s 40th bday celebration!

Shanghai skyline through the rain and smog

Shanghai skyline through the rain and smog

the urban planning museum

the urban planning museum

a scale rendering of Shanghai

a scale rendering of Shanghai

WP_20160508_015 WP_20160508_016

the marriage market where parents go to display the info of their marriageable children.  Posted on umbrellas are vital stats like height, weight, education, annual salary, and home/car ownership status.

the marriage market where parents go to display the info of their marriageable children. Posted on umbrellas are vital stats like height, weight, education, annual salary, and home/car ownership status.

WP_20160509_001

the national liquor that MM picked up.  Highly potent!

the national liquor that MM picked up. Highly potent!

it's a red Wi-Fi tardis

it’s a red Wi-Fi tardis

photomagic(1)(17) 1 WP_20160511_011 WP_20160511_022

train station - bigger than my airport!

train station – bigger than my airport!

me and JG on the bullet train from Shanghai to Berlin

me and JG on the bullet train from Shanghai to Berlin

D sent flowers to my hotel in Shanghai for Mother’s Day!  I took a selfie with them 🙂

WP_20160514_005

I got my morning picture every day too!  This became a highlight of a couple classmates and professors too!

photomagic(1)(11) 1 InstagramCapture_fd12ad1f-9b2b-426f-8ea0-d6302da89510 V__37F1 V__9C8E V__4210 InstagramCapture_6047ab49-18bf-4469-ad36-1d93dcf156fa V__47DE V__46DC InstagramCapture_c473ee4e-34aa-4ea4-b2d8-68690a248201 V__434A InstagramCapture_7c3d4226-cab7-489d-8183-18602225b4d9 V__4263 V__D5EC

I missed my big girl’s birthday!  21!  D took her and the kids out to dinner where A ordered her first drink.  Vodka lemonade 🙂  She also moved into an apartment with 3 other people while I was away.  Not sad that I missed having to help on moving day though 🙂

V__8FA6

And…we got a puppy!  They brought her to the airport when I landed last night.  Her name is Kuma!  We batted many around (Rio, Coco, Freya, Shiro, Tsuki, and a few others).  Ultimately, my friend and classmate (and little brother if I ever had one) JN’s wife CN came up with the name!

as soon as D picked her up!

as soon as D picked her up!

trip home

trip home

V__7554

nap time!

nap time!

hi, I'm Kuma!

hi, I’m Kuma!

afraid of the dishwasher

afraid of the dishwasher

chilling on the bed

chilling on the bed

WIN_20160522_19_10_47_Pro

And cats….

photomagic(1)(10) 1 WP_20160503_008

And I’m going to stop you before I post any more pictures, and go to bed because I have to work tomorrow.  So far, no jet lag, but here’s hoping it doesn’t flatten my tomorrow!