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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Ni Hao! & Xie Xie!

Ni Hao (pronounced nee how) is a common phrase in China. In Chinese Mandarin it means Hello.  It can be spoken anytime of the day and once said, can spark interesting conversations. None of which we completely understood.  Xie Xie (pronounced Shi-e Shi-e) is also a common phrase.  In Chinese Mandarin it means Thank You.

The Chinese language is very complex. Especially when there are similar words with different meanings depending on the tone that is used.  Take the word ma.  Depending on tone it can mean mother, horse, hemp, or scold.  Say it the wrong way, and you may have called your mother a horse!!

There is also differences in the language depending on the region that you live.  The Chinese language spoken in Shanghai is vastly different than the language spoken in Northern or Southern China.  Chinese Mandarin differs from Chinese Cantonese.  People who know Cantonese understand Mandarin, but people who know Mandarin don't understand Cantonese.  It's enough to make your head spin, but we were always safe with Ni Hao & Xie Xie!

We had a great time in China and will post in the coming weeks tons of pictures, full descriptions of our time there, and the second webisode of Take A Leap by mid-February.  We will also share a story about a chance meeting that came at the tail end of our trip than will truly shape the direction of our future.  As for now, we are still recuperating and adjusting to normal life and getting back into the groove of work.  Yet, we couldn't resist sharing these exhilarating pictures of us atop The Great Wall in Beijing. It was -5 Celsius and we were COLD!! It was in the record books as one of the coldest days in almost 50 years. Just our luck!!

Sharee & Rhonda

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