Celebrities and Independence
We spent the entire day Saturday shopping, for most women this would be heaven as there were shoes and handbags for miles, except for the fact we were the only two tall blonde's in the entire mall. Golden Street, which literally is streets of shops, is just like your average mall you’d see in America; it has food courts, designer shops, departments stores, and is crazy busy. The main difference isn’t that we’re in China but that everyone has the same dark hair, but what did I expect, I’m in China!? As Cass and I walked around literally everyone stopped, stared, tapped their friends to make sure they saw us, and took a picture. I don’t think I’ve ever felt so uncomfortable being noticed, or ashamed of my physical features. Back home, if someone looked different I may look or even stare but I don’t think we would be so obvious in our gawking. We left Golden Street and went back to Asian Culture Street where the vendors all remembered us from three days earlier. It makes you realize how America really is a melting pot and to be proud of our difference as we could all almost be the same.
Sticking out like a total tourist with map and camera constantly in hand, luckily Rena (a very nice Chinese student) went shopping with us. I don’t know what we would do without her; she hails our taxi’s, orders for us in restaurants, and helps barter and pay for our new purchases. Although I love her and the assistance she is giving, it’s weird always having to rely on someone. I am very proud of my independence so having to ask for help to go to the bathroom or get water is starting to get irritating. Hopefully as we get more settled and used to the way of Chinese life I will be able to venture out and start taking care of myself again!