5 chinese dramas

the whole thing started with meteor garden, a netflix series that our friends were watching at the beginning of the year. we watched a few episodes with them in thailand in the hopes of catching glimpses of shanghai, but while we were seeing it, a strange and magical thing happened: all these chinese words buried in a dark corner of my brain for over 10 years, came back all in a rush of familiar tones and expressions. suddenly i really wanted to understand things again, i wanted more!

so since then i’ve watched a few of these series. here are 5 series c-dramas i’ve enjoyed lately:

meteor garden started me on this road, so it had to go first. it’s a netflix remake of a taiwanese series, but with mainland characters. it takes place in shanghai, where dong shancai is a university student that stumbles on a gang of 4 boys who think they’re kings of the world… adventures ensue! it’s mostly silly and light – but also very infuriating at times. i guess this is why they’re called dramas in asia. :D

i found a love so beautiful after searching for shen yue, the main character of the previous series. in this series, we follow her fumbling attempts at confessing her love for her childhood crush from high school till adulthood. it’s generally cutesy and light-hearted, but you can see how tough high school is for kids in china, especially as the dreaded university entrance exam draws in.

following hu yi tian (the male lead on the previous series), led me to go go squid! where he plays a supporting role — and it also lead me the world of e-sports. i’m glad it did, because this was a fun series to watch! like stepping into a parallel reality, it was amazing to see how intense the world of e-sports is in china and many other countries. i laughed out loud at their idea of what norway looks like though — i can’t imagine it has these many skyscrapers… :D

after that, i found some more dramas on the theme of e-sports and now i know more vocabulary about gaming than i’ll ever need, but i still find it fascinating. love O2O mixes a bit of game fantasy scenes with real world interactions and i liked the story quite a bit as well — it’s an adaptation of a novel by gu man, a chinese writer whose books have been so popular that a few of them have been made into tv series. the support cast is hilarious and yang yang is a darling, but the female lead… ouch. please, someone feed that kid. :(

(sorry, couldn’t find a subtitled trailer!)

and last but not least, boss & me, another drama based on one of gu man’s novels. also titled “shanshan comes to eat”, it’s mostly a happy series following a girl’s misadventures as a new employee in her company, where she eventually falls in love with her boss. she really enjoys eating and was hired to the company not because of her unspectacular accounting skills, but because she has “panda blood“, aka Rh-, which in China is said to be as rare as pandas.

so that’s it — five silly dramas that i’ve watched and recommend, if you have some time and would like to brush up on chinese vocabulary and listening skills. it’s a nice complement to more boring (but necessary) aspects of chinese learning, such as grammar or character writing practice. i’ve set myself a goal to take a higher level of the HSK exam in 1-2 years, and these higher level exams all have a speaking component, so i’m going to need all the practice i can get. wish me luck! :)

one second everyday — august 2019

august went by in a blaze of hot days, spent mostly indoors sheltering from the heat.

we worked on the 150 years of postcards project, which will soon come to a close. right now though, we’re in that intense phase that wakes me up in the middle of the night stressing about letter spacing and airport logistics, and makes me wonder why we do these things… but then, i read the messages on all the postcards that have been landing on our mailbox lately, and yeah — this is why.

after dark when temperatures dropped, we ventured outside to meet friends old and new, went to concerts and local fairs, babysat, and i picked up on my chinese studies — more on that in a future post. :)

analogue wednesday #203

a frame from R4R-94, swapped with matthew (aka megalithicmatt) some time ago. his frames were shot in the moray firth and black isle, in scotland and mine… probably around portugal somewhere. :)

vietnamese egg soda

this is one of those egg recipes that you just need to try for yourself, or you’ll never believe it works. it’s really simple though, so there’s no excuse not to give it a go: beat an egg, slowly pour some sparkling water on it, mix, add some condensed milk and stir again until it’s nice and foamy. pour it over a glass with some ice cubes and you’re done! the taste is eggy and sweet, and just the thing for a hot summer afternoon. :)

analogue wednesday #202

a frame from R4R-94, swapped with matthew (aka megalithicmatt) some time ago. those are the boy’s hands — he always finds a way to sneak in to every roll! :P