Chit-Chat, or Chinese Women Love to Pry

Today I went to visit my friendly neighborhood fruit vendor to restock our Hami melon supply (it was running dangerously low since we ate our weight in freezing-cold melon chunks yesterday). (For the uninitiated, Hami melon is China’s answer to canteloupe, but it’s bigger and crunchier and 100% more delicious. It comes from the western province of Xinjiang, where they also make great bread. Can’t wait to go there. But this is neither here nor there. I was telling you about the fruit lady.) Owen came along for a late-afternoon errand and stroll by the West Lake, which is now a part of his bedtime routine.

Our conversation was more involved than usual (she normally says hello, oh my but your baby is big, how many bananas would you like?, don’t you want to buy some grapes they are very sweet?, that will be 5 kuai, bye bye). Today, accidentally, we really got into it.

Fruit lady: “Let me hold your baby while you shop.”

Me: “Alright.”

Fruit lady: “He is wonderfully fat. [Pointing at my chest] Does he eat breast milk or formula?”
Me: “Breast milk.”

Fruit lady: “Your breast milk?”
Me: “Yes, mine.”

Fruit lady: “Oh. Is it sufficient for him? Do you make enough milk?”
Me: “Yes. But once he is 6 months old I will give him other food, like bananas and oatmeal.”
Fruit lady: “Oh. Good. Where do you live, exactly?”
Me: “Over in that building [gesturing].”

Fruit lady: “Do you rent an apartment?”
Me: “Yes, we rent.”
Fruit lady: “Is it expensive?”
Me: “It is a little expensive, but not too expensive.”
Fruit lady: “Oh. How much does it cost per month?”
Me: “…I don’t know. My husband pays the rent.”
Fruit lady: “Oh, your husband rents it.”

Owen: “Roar!”

Me: “I would like six bananas and a melon, please.”
Fruit lady: “That will be 30 kuai. Bye bye!”

Me: “Bye bye!”

Owen: “Hoot.”

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1 Comment

Filed under Life in the Bike Lane

One response to “Chit-Chat, or Chinese Women Love to Pry

  1. Grandma Alice

    Owen’s comments are the best!

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