02 October 2013

Andrew in Chinese

My dear friend Khya moved to Shanghai a year or two back and recently, my other dear friend Andrew went to visit him.
Upon his return Andrew posted this on his fbook and I loved it:


Lots of people in Shanghai take on a western name for ease of communication with us linguistically unskilled outsiders. I met, among more pedestrian names, a Banana and a New Star. And I unexpectedly was given a Chinese way to write my name that is way better than the trisyllabic default used in translating the Bible. ALex Zhang blessed me with "Ānzhū," a friendly bisyllable meaning "peaceful pig."

And in a comment later:
Incidentally, Tyler's has switched around between meaning "Thai happy," "too happy," and "too spicy."

Michael and I are planning a trip to visit Khya in May and I absolutely cannot wait.  I´ve never travelled to Asia before and to see a tiny bit of it with a friend, and my dear husband will be a dream come true.  It will only be my second time visiting a country whose native language I do not speak.  I went to Prague in 2008, and was hoping it would be like the rest of the Europe I had seen--where everyone speaks English, if only a little bit.  Yeah, no.  It wasn´t.  No one spoke any English at all.  In fact, I was lucky most of them spoke some passable German and I was able to fumble around that way.  Anyway, I´m sure China with no Chinese would be completely different from the China I´ll get to see with Khya to guide us.  I mean, I have no reservations about visiting the rest of Asia with no knowledge of the languages and getting by with guidebook in hand like any other tourist, but I´m just so happy about going to visit Khya there.

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