i haven’t been writing much lately because… well, i haven’t been shopping very much. at least, i haven’t been shopping very much in china. i’ve been spending most of my time “window-shopping” — going through all my favorite american on-line retailers, putting things in my virtual shopping cart, and then just leaving them there for weeks and weeks until they get sold out. as you can see, some of my imaginary purchases even get imaginary backordered.
i am homesick, and this is what i do for therapy.
on-line shopping in china takes a bit more energy. i often ask my friend/dealer Luna to make orders for me, but i search for things on my own. what i’ve started doing is using Google Translate to get what i’m looking for in chinese characters. then i copy and paste that into the keyword search. this is pretty easy when you’re searching for something very straightforward — like a hairdryer — but not so easy when you’re searching for something that you don’t know the name of. and google translate does not always give you the accurate translation. also, things can get weird really fast when you’re blindly clicking on buttons: once i was searching for dumpling rolling pin, and after a few random clicks, i somehow ended up finding a bunch of X-rated toys.
but eventually, i always find what i’m looking for. i recently saw a very random thing (can’t tell you what it is because i’m getting my brother the said item for x-mas and he occasionally visits this blog) that i didn’t even know the name of, and i found it pretty quickly on taobao.com by google translating random combinations of words. i think this is just yet another proof that when it comes to shopping, i am a freaking genius — not even illiteracy can hold me back.