By Numerologist Sally Faubion
Phone : (415) 433-9808
App website: www.cosmicmates.net
In this newsletter
This newsletter has nothing to do with numerology but I felt compelled to share a few of my observations about my recent trip to China. I spent the last two weeks in China and arrived back in the States on Wednesday, May 30th - - very glad to be back on American soil - - the reasons being few but noteworthy:
1) Toilets and TP: Even though most places were very clean in China where we were taken on the tours, in America we don't have to wait in long lines for what was usually the ONLY toilet with a seat, or rather that wasn't a "squat" toilet (which should be called the "squat and splatter" toilets). I was obliged to use the squat technique a couple of times which was easier than I thought but the splatter aspect was something one had to get used to, kind of like peeing in the woods type thing. Oh, and God forbid you should forget to take TP with you because there were no TP dispensers in most of toilets we visited - except in the hotels, of course. Indoctrinated by the "clean freak" mentality that prevails in America, I often washed my shoes along with myself in the evening.
2) The Food: Chinese food is very good - - lots of veggies and many dishes containing different meats and fishes, but having it three times a day for 10 straight days makes one yearn for the simplicity and Americanized deliciousness of an In and Out burger. There are McDonalds, KFCs, and Submarine Sandwiches on most every main thoroughfare, and Starbucks galore, the latter of which serve up a great rendition of the American non-fat latte. McDonalds, KFC, and Submarine Sandwiches, on the other hand, are franchises owned by independent conglomerates outside China, but they are required to purchase all the food components for their outlets from China which caters to the China inhabitants' tastes, rightly enough. However, foreign word has it that the food compositions do not deliver a comparable palatable taste for those accustomed to the "real thing." I ordered a chicken half-sandwich from a Starbucks and while I did eat it because I was close to starving (in my mind, of course), there didn't appear to be any semblance of chicken in it but at least it kept the wolves away.
3) The Smog: Smog was everywhere, at times so thick (especially in Beijing) that you didn't need to carry sunscreen because there was no way the UV rays could penetrate the film in the atmosphere enough to burn your skin. Lots of big nuclear-looking cooling towers with smoke spewing from them around most of the cities we visited. We were told they were burning coal and that the nuclear silos were located in only one area of China far away from where we were. Whatever! Seems to me whether coal or nuclear, both are hazardous to the health of the people at large, not to say BTW that we don't have some of those same hazardous circumstances in this country.
4) The Population: San Francisco is considered a metropolis, albeit small in comparison to New York City, but if you include the whole of the Bay Area then the population is approximately 6.3 million. In China, all the cities we visited were 18 to 25 million in population. Considering San Francisco's current population of approximately 800,000 that would make it like a very small barrio of one of those cities in China. I can now understand why so many Chinese have moved to our fair city - it's like being on a holiday away from throngs of people, even though to us natives San Francisco is quite bustling. Beijing was more like bustling on steroids.
5) The Government: Although we get upset with our government for overspending and occasionally going beyond the boundaries of what we consider our privacy rights, it is a far cry from what I observed in China. In Beijing, which is the capital of the Government of China, the government buildings looked like George Orwellian depictions of "Big Brother is watching." Almost every one of the hundreds of government building was gigantic and dark gray in color with either big red Chinese letters across the top or a big red emblem in the center of the top. They were very ominous looking, to say the least. One resident of Beijing that I spoke with at length on a plane flight said that if you might even write about the government, even in a humorous tone, in an email, you would likely receive a comment about that in an email from the government - - in other words, "Big Brother" IS watching.
ON THE POSITIVE SIDE:
Cultural Amenities: There were many beautiful and massive flower arrangements and trees planted everywhere throughout the cities we visited, along with many lovely parks with lakes and Pagodas and other structures that were intricately and artfully designed. The history of each area was interesting, even though so much of it was about the power and opulent living of the Emperors and Empresses and how the rest of their civilization was oppressed by the powerful reigning dynasties.
Basically, I saw people just living as people, doing much the same as we do. Loving their children (or child, as it were) and it appeared that there was an elevation in status for much of the population by all the construction taking place of what appeared to be single-level family dwellings (perhaps because they are nearing owning a chunk of the USA due to our outstanding debt to them). Most of the residents live in the hundreds of high-rise apartment buildings which contain 400-500 sq. ft. apartments that house sometimes two to three generations of one family, all living in those small confines at the same time. There is apparently a constant tearing down and rebuilding of those structures and because there is so much building going on everywhere one of our tour guides said that now their national bird is the mechanical crane instead of the long-reigning red-crowned crane. He was joking, of course.
The Best Part: Shanghai was spectacular -- very clean and utterly astounding and colorful skyline. There were at least 30 huge skyscrapers around the pier of the bay, all lit up almost like a giant caricature of Las Vegas, only classier. Some of the buildings were 80 to 100+ floors and our tour guide said that it takes a half hour to climb to the top of one of the sight-seeing structures. Loads of stairs were everywhere - perhaps that's why there are seemingly no overweight Chinese. That impressed me greatly and I'm considering adopting some of the daily food fare of the Chinese, which includes veggies like bean, cabbage, and tomatoes for breakfast, which could be another reason for their svelte physiques.
Conclusion: Overall, this experience helped me to be grateful for living in America but understanding at the same time that people are the same wherever you go - all of us have akin souls that are doing our best to cope with, and hopefully find some solace in, what our daily personal lives are dishing out.
One of my most magnanimous and humanitarian clients, Olenka Villarreal, has founded "Magical Bridge" which is the first of its kind playground for children with and without special needs in her communiity (Palo Alto, CA). It is my pleasure to introduce this unique and beneficial project. You may be inspired to begin something comparable in your own community or to offer a donation at www.magicalbridge.org.