Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Ting Bu La

Last night, I went out with PoPo to throw out the garbage. However, we were too late and the garbage men had already come for pick up. So we walked down the street and PoPo ended up talking to a restaurant owner for a while, mostly in Taiwanese. Occasionally she would use Mandarin or point to me so I knew she was talking about me. Another man there helped translate from Taiwanese to Mandarin and sometimes to English if I really didn't get it. PoPo was on a roll with the woman, so I decided to ask the man what was on the menu. He told me about their specialty dishes and some of the desserts they had. They were both very friendly so I decided to return for lunch the next day.

So that's what I did today. I had some Ting Bu La and then polished off a Hua Sheng Dou Hua (peanuts with cold tofu dish). The Ting Bu La reminded me of something else I've had in Taiwan - mostly because of the sauce. Underneath was a hodgepodge of unknowns - I'm guessing Tofu, Fishballs and Rice-somethings. It was tasty.

In class today, another girl showed up. She's from Indonesia (Yin Ni) and can speak Chinese. She only got to Taiwan 3 days ago and has to jump into our Chapter 1 test tomorrow - including the use of BoPoMoFo, which she never learned. She seemed to catch on pretty quick in class, so she either has an excellent memory or already has the basic reading background that most of the rest of us are lacking. After class, I went over BoPoMoFo with her so that she would be better prepared tomorrow. Oh the other good thing for the rest of us is that she barely knows English - so the teacher is forced to use Chinese to explain things to her - and the rest of us are forced to use Chinese as well to communicate with her. Spending about half an hour with her after class already improved my Chinese.

Example of my Chinese knowledge (speaking and reading)

我 是 美 國 人. Lao Shi 是 中國 人. 你 姓 什 麼? 你 叫 什麼
您 貴姓? 妳 好
他 是 英 國 人 媽?

I am American. Teacher is Chinese. What is your last name? What is your first name?
What is your last name (with respect)? Hello/How are you?
Is she British?


Anonymous said...

I knew a BoPoMoFo in college.

snowtweety said...

I can totally read that. Haven't lost it all. Woo-hoo!