The Amazons of China

Little Miss kept waking me up again throughout the night, and I think all the interrupted sleep over the past few weeks finally caught up with me today. Despite having two cups of coffee this morning – which I avoid as much as possible unless I absolutely need that second cup to function – I still felt really out of sorts all day. So I had to take a nap to make sure I got through my Chinese lesson tonight!

And luckily I did, because I was then actually functioning like a normal person during the lesson 👍 We talked about online shopping in China, as of course I had to mention my new headset 😆 We talked mainly about two websites that I view as sorta like the Amazons of China, Taobao and JD, or Jing Dong. There are others too (competition in China ironically seems to be much better than in the west), but I think these are the two main ones.

They both have Black Friday type sales and the amount of turnover during these sales is staggering. This year, one of the sites, Taobao, I think, had sales in the first hour of over ¥200 billion. That’s over US$28 billion in the first hour alone 😱 I struggle to count in Chinese when the numbers are that huge, so I had to actually write the number down 😅

I told her I still buy off Amazon because the Chinese sites don’t have English, and I don’t yet trust my Chinese to buy stuff on those websites. I really should give it a go one of these days, I probably don’t give myself enough credit 😊 Especially since we are now living in China and all, I really should take advantage of it! Even if it is a Special Administrative Region and the HK protesters are currently wanting to sever all ties with the mainland, it is still currently part of China. I should make the most of it while we’re here 😊

My new toy!

My Amazon purchase arrived today and I absolutely love my new headset. My voice sounds so clear through them! Although I don’t really have anything to go by except for the earphones that my iPhone came with 😆 But for US$20, I think they sound pretty damn good! My voice comes across quite naturally. Now all I want to do is record stuff! I sorta wish I had my own podcast now, just so I can record stuff with my new headset. Maybe I can start one 😉

I called my parents to try out the new headset, just to make sure they were working ok. My mum said I sounded like I was really far away, so I started to become discouraged, thinking that I might have just wasted US$20 on a crap headset. But after fiddling around with the audio settings on my computer, I managed to get the volume back up, and I sounded perfectly fine again – a bit too loud, actually, according to my mum. So it was all good 👍 So I’m really happyyy!

I’ll get to try it out again tomorrow during my online lesson. No doubt I’ll be going on about how excited I am with my new headset – in Chinese! 😆 But to what extent I can express that excitement in Chinese, let’s wait and see, shall we?!? 🤔

Oh what exactly are these headsets, you may be wondering. Well it’s these ones:

MPOW BH071A USB Headset

And here is the Amazon link, if you’re interested. Not that I get any kickbacks for sending you this link, I’m just sayin’ it’s here, FYI. But I should give them some feedback anyhow, because I’m so happyyy with this product! 😁😁

Delivery attempted

I got yet another crappy night’s sleep, with Little Miss waking me up numerous times throughout the night 😒 But I somehow managed to still have quite a productive day, so I was happy with that.

Did I mention that I bought a few things on Amazon last week? Well I think my package is already in HK! That was quick. I assume they’ll deliver it sometime tomorrow, so I’m terribly excited about that. I may not like the process of shopping itself, but it is fun to get packages 📦 😆

The tracking on their website is a bit stuffed, so I don’t quite know when I’ll get my package. Last time I rang them up to query the tracking, and they said to ignore the “delivery attempted” updates as they weren’t correct 🙄 I’m getting the same updates again this time, so I assume it’s the same issue as last time again, and so I’m ignoring them. All I know is that it’s in HK already, so I’m expecting it to arrive sometime tomorrow. Fingers crossed! 🤞

Google Translate, shopping and the RWC

I texted a handyman here to fix our leaking toilet. I used Google Translate to reverse-engineer my English, to make sure that what I say in my text in English can be understood in Chinese if he chooses to use Google Translate to translate my text 😂 I’ve done it before too, when people send me texts that sound really odd in English. I just put it into Google Translate and read the Chinese, which ends up making more sense 😜 A different way to use Google Translate, but hey, whatever works!

We then went to Wan Chai and Fortress Hill to do a bit of shopping. It was pretty quiet, which is still really odd to see on the weekend. I guess people are still not really going out, despite the protests quietening down the last few weekends. I still think it’s a good time for people to take advantage of this time! Snap up a few bargains virtually everywhere 👍

We went home soon after to watch the Wales vs South Africa rugby semi-final, which was a really close match. It was anyone’s game for pretty much the entire 80 minutes! Now just one more match to play and then the Rugby World Cup will be over once again. That’s quite sad. I am really enjoying it, and so it’ll be quite sad to see it come to an end 😔

Apart from the rugby

We went and had yum cha again today, which was nice 😊 We then did a bit of shopping and then N went to the gym and I went to the library, before meeting back up again at home to watch the disastrous England vs NZ semi final in the Rugby World Cup 😒

We then went to the vet to pick up some more meds for Kitty, and ran into one of N’s workmates on our way there. I just realised that at least three of N’s workmates live within, say, 300m from us. That is insane! Goes to show just how compact this city is!

We then picked up a pizza on our way back from the vet, and then afterwards N went to meet up with some workmates for a few drinks.

Apart from the crappy rugby match, it wasn’t a bad Saturday 😊

No issues today

I managed to make it to an 8am trading webinar today. One, I made it on time, and two, I actually got the time right! I’ve been missing a few webinars lately because it seemed like I couldn’t figure out the local time of when the seminar would start 🙄 But luckily, no issues today 😅 They gave me a few ideas to backtest, so that should keep me busy for a while.

We gave Kitty her painkillers last night, and that seemed to have helped her, I think. She ate a lot of food today, which is also another good sign. Let’s see if she can keep it down, though. Poor little miss. She’s thrown up three times this week. No wonder I’ve been a bit stressed lately 😔

And then in the evening, I just watched a few more episodes of Ode to Joy 2, my current Chinese drama, while N was out for birthday drinks. A quiet evening in for me, though 😊

Tired, stressed and anxious

We’ve been opening our windows at home lately, now that the heat of summer is pretty much gone and the weather is now a little cooler. This has meant the sounds outside are wafting into the apartment much more now. It doesn’t normally bother us – until last night, when some building construction guys figured that drilling and hammering at 4am is ok. Seriously?!? So I went to shut the windows to minimise the sound. It was dulled somewhat, but we could still hear it 😡

And then a few hours later, Kitty woke me up, as she didn’t quite make it into her litter tray. She’s been having a few more accidents now and is also throwing up more. Sighhh… Poor little one 😔 She was ok the rest of the day, though, and still has a good appetite, so I also wonder if I’m stressing out too much about her.

All this stress and anxiety didn’t help my productivity today 😔 Not to mention my lack of sleep because of all the drilling and hammering in the middle of the night! 😒 Fingers crossed for a better day tomorrow 🤞

Stress and my continued language learning

Kitty threw up again last night. She seems to be throwing up a bit more now, which isn’t good. If she continues to throw up more regularly now, we may have to discuss with the vet again in terms of her medicine dosage. Poor little one 😔

I did some online shopping today, shock horror 😱 My bi-annual online purchase, it seems. I don’t tend to do much online shopping at all, which is so odd because you’d think I’d be all over it, given how convenient it is! But I don’t like shopping in general, so perhaps this is just an extension of that 🤷‍♀️

I bought the next textbook in the series of textbooks that we’ve been using to learn Chinese. Book four! I’m not sure if I’m ready for book four, as I barely remember what we learnt in book three! So maybe I should review book three while I wait for book four to be delivered 😊

And I had my Chinese lesson today, which was actually quite ok! The ones where we’re just talking about general day-to-day stuff is relatively ok and easier to follow. It’s when we’re talking about the harder topics (eg the ongoing HK protests, government policy, and even expressing my opinions on a particular topic) that is when my mind is completely blown 🤯 I still have to get her to repeat herself quite a number of times, but nonetheless, it feels like my comprehension is getting better. I’m still learning a ton of new words, it’s an ongoing, endless journey! 😆

My gift and WeChat

My friend received her photo book today, the one that I created for her in memory of her cat who passed away recently. I was sooo happy when she messaged me to tell me that she had received it, and that she thought it was so amazing. I’m really happy that I was able to do this for her. I know how devastating it must’ve been to lose him, so I’m glad she can smile so many more times now and in the future just by flicking through her new photo book 😊 🙏

This YouTube clip about WeChat came up in my recommendations. It’s basically one of China’s gigantic social media apps and then some. I’ve known a little bit of what you can do on it, and this clip showed it to me in action. Plus the beer place in the clip is pretty freaking awesome! The video is worth checking out just for that beer scene 😆 Totes jells!

So I went looking for another clip that gave a bit more information on other features that I wasn’t aware of, and found this one. It’s making me rather envious that WeChat is not as ubiquitous in HK as it is on the mainland! And here I thought HK was already pretty damn convenient. China takes it to a whole new level 😲

All work and no play would make me a dull lady 😜

I had a very productive day today. I couldn’t have asked for a more productive day. I ticked off everything on my to-do list, now how often does that ever happen?! I was so proud of my effort. But I did tell myself to learn from the shambles of a week that I had last week, when I didn’t use my Bullet Journal to organise myself until Friday. So the first thing I did today was organise my week. And man, did that make a total difference for me! 😲 Totally happy with my day 👍

I even managed to slot in an episode of Ode to Joy 2, my current Chinese drama. And then we rounded off the day with another episode of Lucifer. So today wasn’t just all about work 😊