Taking Stock: March

Hello there! How are you?

I promised in my first post on Nanjing Nian that I would NOT bitch and moan here, so I am going to be true to my word and not do that. All I will say is that I have had a horrible day, one of those days where everything that could go wrong does, and it seems that the world is against you. Y’know how those days can be? When several different Chinese bureaucrats yell at you and don’t give you a piece of paper, which is the only thing you need for you and your one true love to stay in the country?

OK, maybe you don’t know about that exact situation, but you will have had horrible days of your own (and by the way, I am fully aware that nothing TRULY terrible has happened and that everyone I love is safe and well, and am ever so thankful for that! Let’s keep things in perspective).

I wanted to say g’day to all of you, and to take stock. Taking stock is this great thing I learnt from Meet Me at Mikes, and you can join in too! Just post your own taking stock list in the comments box. I would so love to hear from you. It would cheer me up no end. But for now, here is my own stock take on the 9th March, 2015… 

Making: a secret present for a dear friend (it’s a crochet thing – but ssshh, don’t tell!)
Cooking: stewed apple, which I forgot about, and only remembered when the apartment filled with smoke. Now the whole place smells of burnt apple
Drinking: half a mini bottle of red wine that Steve got from the plane
Reading: Emma by Jane Austen. I just love Jane. Sigh.
Wanting: a blue visa form from Mr Zhu at Nanjing University that will let Steve stay in China with me! Please Mr Zhu? Pretty please?                                                                                                            Looking: out the window at the grey old world                                                                                Deciding: whether to stay in the intermediate Chinese class (hard!) or move down to where I feel more comfortable/less stupid
Wishing: the sun would come out soon
Enjoying: this hot water bottle on my chilly feet
Waiting: to be finished with the Chinese bureaucracy for a while
Liking: Ravelry…can you believe they have a list of wool shops in Nanjing? And we found one…amazing! I love the internet.
Wondering: what I would do if Steve had to go home.
Loving: our Chinese friends, who are being ever so helpful and took us for DELICIOUS hotpot on Saturday night
Pondering: whether or not to buy this e-book for bloggers
Considering: what TV series to watch next…any recommendations?
Buying: apartment basics like a cutlery organiser – much harder to find that you think!
Watching: Breaking Bad (Season 3) for the second time. Man it is good. Oh Walter White, why are you so evil? 
Hoping: that everything will sort itself out in time
Marvelling: at how lucky I am not to be a bureaucrat
Cringing: at how mean bureaucrats can be
Needing: something from a bureaucrat! Can you tell?!
Questioning: our decision to come here (but only a little bit)
Smelling: burnt apple
Wearing: thermal underwear and my down jacket (even in bed!)
Following: the advice of whatever wise person said ‘all things shall pass’
Noticing: how easy it is to make new friends when you are all in a strange new place together. It’s nice to have a crew 🙂
Knowing: that I am lucky to be here in the first place
Thinking: about what I will do when I get back to Aus…
Admiring: the commitment and skill of Chinese people who speak fluent English. They are amazing!
Sorting: through my Yunnan photos (the one at the top is of photographers at sunrise at the Yuanyang Rice Terraces)
Getting: more familiar with our local hood
Bookmarking: this list of the 100 Best Chinese Films of All Time, and wondering which one to start with (again, recommendations welcome!)
Coveting: another glass of red wine (I sound like an alcoholic, but I’m really not, I swear!)
Disliking: the fact that wine is really expensive here
Opening: my Chinese books to study (well I’m actually not, but probably should be)
Giggling: at Chinese taxi drivers. Insane!
Feeling: much better after a little rest from the outside world
Snacking: on nothing much, and thinking we need to do a grocery shop!
Comforting: myself with a hot water bottle and Breaking Bad in bed 🙂
Wishing: I could find a 4.5mm crochet hook somewhere in Nanjing
Helping: no one really…at the moment I am needing help from everyone I know!
Hearing: the sound of cars and buses on Shanghai Rd

Here’s a blank list if you want to join in and take stock yourself (you can share if you want (please do!)).

Making :
Cooking :
Drinking :


I’d love to hear where you’re at in your own life stock take…and hope you enjoy reading my Taking Stock, even if it seems a little downbeat. Things can only get better I say!



3 thoughts on “Taking Stock: March

  1. Iza! Thanks for a great post! Good luck with Mr. Zhu. I am up to Season 5 – and Walter is only getting more villainous – it’s too good!!! Much love xx Ez.
    “Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.” – Sonny from Marigold Hotel.


  2. Making :my own muesli with cornflakes, rolled oats allbran,cranberries, sunflower seeds etc
    Cooking : boiled fruit cake
    Drinking : Lipton’s peach cordial, well diluted with cold water & ice
    Reading: Helen Garner’s true stories, & RL Stevenson Travels in the Cevenne with a donkey
    Wanting: my leg to feel better
    Looking: at the beginning of autumn in my garden
    Playing: 3MBS FM , and ABC FM
    Deciding:whether to drive or cycle to the Supermarket
    Wishing:all the photos, prints, paintings that are in a box, were on our walls
    Enjoying:teaching Beginners Italian class
    Waiting: for heavy rain, so I can stop watering plants with a 2 litre milk bottle of tank water
    Liking: Izy’s blog
    Wondering: if she’s feeling better
    Loving:the purple cashmere jumper Susie gave me, that she didn’t want anymore
    Pondering: whether to discuss any travel plans with David
    Considering:whether I am coming to Nanjing
    Buying:a new vacuum cleaner
    Watching:Q&A with Annabel Crabbe hosting for International Womens Day
    Hoping:Jenny & Bruce get another dog to replace Lucy the labrador who has died
    Marvelling:at the dedicated tradies who arrive at 6.30am to work on some rich woman’s house
    Cringing: that someone buys a really good house, then pulls its apart & spends another $1milion
    Needing:to do more things that are good and enjoyable
    Questioning:what life is all about
    Smelling:too much Brut aftershave
    Wearing:autumn tonings (again)
    Following:AFL news to prepare for Supercoach
    Noticing:bulbs coming up
    Knowing:that all things pass
    Thinking:that too many people live in cities
    Admiring:Bruce who had a stroke 5 years ago, and is still learning to walk again
    Sorting:through cake tins to find the one I like
    Getting:sick of this long list
    Bookmarking:pages in Prego my Italian grammar book
    Coveting:Alison St J’s powder blue VW Golf
    Disliking:nature programs sound tracks
    Opening:another final demand from the dentist!
    Giggling:at DMR’s visual explanations of a bread knife
    Feeling:pretty happy that the dentist won’t charge me $247 after I wrote them a letter enclosing a reluctant payment
    Snacking:on my homemade pistacchio and cranberry biscotti
    Comforting:to know that Stephen made it safely
    Wishing:they let him stay
    Helping:other people learn a language
    Hearing:tradies hammering and punching a nail gun


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