All about the bling

I spend a lot of time shopping since I’ve moved to China. I’m not really sure how that happened because I was never much of a shopper in the States. I think it may have something to do with the fact that there is so much cool stuff that is so cheap. I’m a big bargain shopper and I love to hunt for a deal. I really have a hard time passing up something cool that is absurdly cheap, even if I don’t really need it. The other day I bought this pair of shoes for $1.50. I probably won’t wear them but a couple of times, but really… $1.50?! Pretty sure I’ll get my money’s worth if I wear them more than once. There is no shortage of deals to be hunted in Shenyang.

The other reason I enjoy shopping in China is the amazingly interesting sights you come across. You can’t spend 1 hour out and about without running into something that makes your mouth fall open. One of our favorite sayings in China (besides DONKEY!) is “zhendi ma?” (pronounced ‘jendama’) which means “really??” in Chinese.

As in… did I really just witness… (fill in the blank)?

Examples that might (and have) filled in that blank: …a baby peeing on the sidewalk; …someone carrying a refrigerator… on a bicycle; …a grown man peeing on the sidewalk; …a dog in a Santa costume… in October… peeing on the sidewalk.

“Zhendi ma?” That’s what you were thinking too, right? Now you get it…

Lately, we’ve been using this phrase a lot to speak about the overwhelming amount of sparkle that has now arrived on… well, everything. Apparently, when Springtime and warmer weather come around, that means it is time to celebrate by busting out the bedazzlers.


I was having my Chinese lessons the other day and my Chinese teacher mentioned something about Spring and putting on your bling. At first I just looked at her and thought I misunderstood. Surely she was just mispronouncing something or had accidentally used “bling” instead of the correct word.

But when I looked confused, she went on to explain. “You know, in the Summer, you have the many colors, and the jewelry on your bag, and your scarf, and your umbrella. And the jewelry on your cellphone… you know, bling.”

And she proceeded to pick up her cellphone to show me the gold and silver and crystal beads dangling from it. “The Chinese love bling.”

Wow. She was absolutely correct in her use of the word ‘bling’. Laughing, I just answered, “I know!”

Well, in case you need to add some bling to your life. I found some shoes that might do the trick…


I’m afraid no one explained the idea of “less is more” to the kid they turned loose with the bedazzler in this booth.

And in case you can’t decide whether to wear pearls or diamonds…


Don’t worry!


With this shoe, you can wear both!

It’s Springtime!… where is your BLING?


3 thoughts on “All about the bling

  1. THAT would explain this ugly, I mean shirt with bling that Toby (my exchange student) bought today to take back to China to a friend. He flys out on the 23rd.