15 April 2009

No More Henry

Henry's teeth are stained. At first I thought he was wearing braces, because I didn't see enough white in his mouth. He carries a green flag at the top of a four-foot extendable pole, so that we can find him in the thronging multitudes. His th's are s sounds. And some words have a glottal stop instead of an ending consonant. It's not so easy to write though. The olympic medals are made of ja-- (jade); something like that. Or the l's that sound a bit like w's: hote-- or we--come.


Maryann asked how long we'd be in the Ya Xiu market. He said, "I was planning on an hour and a half. But you're from a democratic country, so we'll vote." A bunch of Asians were really rushed--maybe a little rude--in getting us off a cart so they could get in. As we walked away, he said, "They were Japanese." But he said it with a hint of smile. Later, when we asked him who was the president of China, he said, "Hu is the president of China." We totally didn't get it. He said in China the husbands make the big decisions and the wives make the little decisions; but there are no big decisions.


On the bus ride to church, we asked Henry a few questions about religion. He said 90% of Chinese people don't have a religion. They believe that when the body dies the soul dies too. He said it's like you go to sleep, but you don't wake up. No more dreams. "No more Henry. It makes me feel scared."