Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Ups and the Downs

After a very discouraging day yesterday where I "fixed" my iPad by inadvertently deleting my VPN and completely killing out all my downloaded issues of the New Yorker, a process that took me all day, I was ready to give up and crawl under a down comforter until it was time to come home from this place.

And then, my new friends invited me to a Chinese New Year party, sponsored by the government of the Chaoyang district in Beijing (you know, the "civilized" one that Joanna describes on her blog And that made all the difference. It was an odd hodgepodge of magic acts, adorable little children singing and dancing (described as "Healthy Children Happily Play in Spring Festival"), and tables laden with extremely mediocre wine (the label said California, but I'm thinking California kicked out this wine). Plus, a bunch of Aussies and a couple of Americans taking it all in as we popped pistachios, a jelly-like candy, and, at the end, plate after plate of delicious dumplings.

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