Chinglish Cookies; Chinese Discovery of America; Blue Plate Special

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Sun Sep 22 11:03:24 UTC 2002

   Greetings from Gyantse.  I had a pleasant 8-hour drive on unpaved roads at 16,000 feet about sea level.
   My MIR tour leader is at my Tibet tour guide's throat.  A few more "What's on top of that mountain?" "Mountain?";  "Does that pole have any meaning in Buddhism?" "Yes"; and others were more than we could take.  It makes a HUGE difference in a country like this.  We are paying for a guide, but don't have one.
   The Hard Yak Cafe is popular, but is not affiliated with the mentally unstable yak restaurants (Mad Yak, Crazy Yak).

BLUE PLATE SPECIAL--I just posted some searching for this with NEW YORK TIMES full text!...The original "blue plates" come from China.

CHINGLISH COOKIES--I bought some cookies (Dali Biscuit, or "ZAOCHABING").  See  From the outside wrapper:
   May the breeze bring you The tenderness and warmth from me Far from each other we may be.  Yet still you are here, At the bottom of my heart.
(Too bad the Chinese don't make Oreos--ed.)

CHINESE DISCOVERY OF AMERICA--About December 2001, someone lectured the Royal Geographic Society (a book will follow) about what he believed to be the pre-Columbian Chinese disovery of America.  He thinks that it's clear that the Europeans borrowed from Chinese maps.
   "Dalai"=ocean.  The Tibetans and the Chinese had many cultural exchanges.  I somehow had the hope that some old book not burned, perhaps in Drepung (1416), in Sera (1419), or here in Gyantse (1440), mentioned the Chinese voyages.
   It would be important to Tibet, to China, to the United States, and to world history, but is probably beyond the scope of this tour.

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