royann’s chinese new year gift to me

Technically, there is no such thing as a Chinese New Year gift. Not in that Christmas or birthday sense of the word. These days, I consider the smallest gestures a gift. Like when someone offers to hold Mila for five minutes. Because they can tell that I am an overwhelmed new mother.

In other Chinese New Year news, I had a unique encounter at Golden House restaurant where this picture is taken. The proprietor is from 福州 (Fuzhou), and I bonded with her (in my crap Mandarin) over how my grandparents were also 福州人 (people from Fuzhou). Then I told her I was from Singapore, to which she said, “从新加坡来得?你的普通话为什么讲的这么好?” (Translation: You’re from Singapore? How come you speak so well?)

Any real Mandarin speaker who has had the painful pleasure of conversing with me would find this statement pretty amusing.

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