Friday, May 06, 2005

You're sick of hangin' around and you'd like to travel;
Get tired of travelin' and you want to settle down.
I guess they can't revoke your soul for tryin',
Get out of the door and light out and look all around.
-Grateful Dead, Truckin'

So, a reader wrote me and asked that I fill out a form as follows, so I will.

Your best memory: The closeness, acceptance and love that was shown to me by so many people in so many cities. The conversations, the opening up for me to join in the families, friendships and networks of the people there.

Your best meal: A seafood and dumpling feast in Guangzhou. Shrimp, crabs, lobster, barbecued pork, 3 kinds of vegetables, fried pumpkin fritters.

Most interesting thing you saw: The homes of the people I visited. Seeing what the houses and everyday lives of the people were like.

The most peaceful thing you saw/felt: Sitting on the bow of the boat on the Yangtze and looking out at the high mountains, the green river and the hillside farms.

The most spectacular or awe-inspiring thing you experienced: Watching and listening to the Monks chant at the temple in Hangzhou.

Most disturbing thing you saw: The horribly disfigured people begging in the streets of the cities.

Most frustrating moment: Trying to get coffee, everywhere.

Funniest situation: Watching the bead seller try and charge me for 1,000 beads when I just watched her count out 800. Her nerve and her straight face cracked me up.

What you realized you missed the most from home and maybe what you missed the least, to your surprise: Missed the most? Pizza and sandwiches, real coffee and soft mattresses. Missed the least? Seeing the same people and things all the time.

We will now return to our regular New York based blogging.