At first this might seem terribly unimpressive, but those who have been following my journey closely will understand my elation. Ever since I began studying here I have been bombarded by frustration and incompetency in regards to my Chinese abilities. Time and again conversations with Chinese people have abruptly turned into English conversations -- with them usually initiating the change -- because they can't understand what I'm saying, or I can't understand what they are saying. Most inklings of hope that have sprung up due to understanding my teachers in class have almost immediately been mowed over as soon as I enter the "real world."
But today I "successfully" had a significant exchange of words with the woman in the ticket office. I say "successfully" because much of that exchange was spent clarifying each other's meanings. But, alas, I now have two tickets.
In case you're wondering, I purchased the tickets because I will be traveling during a short school holiday next week to visit a couple of friends.
A few interesting facts to leave you with:
- At most ticket offices in China you can only buy a train ticket if it is 10 days or less before your departure date.
- The standard price of a train ticket to a city 500 miles away is about $20 if you want to sit or $40 if you want to lie down.
- You can fly for about $75.