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Adventures with Alisha

The Muslim Quarters

CHINA | Monday, 18 July 2011 | Views [439]

You know something insanely surprising?  There are many Chinese Muslims.  I think most people are under the impression that most Chinese are atheist if anything, and if they do follow some sort of religion, it's either Buddhism or Christianity.  However, one of the things I have learned while in Xi'an is that there are lots of Chinese Muslims.  I'm not sure how this happened historically, but I'm sure it has to do with some sort of expansion from the Middle East.  But when and how?

This past weekend, I ventured in the Muslim Quarters again to really shop and look around.  The most famous street is one filled with delicious delicacies like kao rou, Choco-Listo, and other rice cakes.  I made sure to gobble up as much food as possible and then settled for a plate of green beans because they looked crispy and filled with nutrients that I needed for the long day ahead.  And they were!

After that, I shopped.  Shopping, shopping, and more shopping.  However, shopping with two boys isn't necessarily the best thing. 

Me: Oh wow this a cute top!

Other two: *shrugs shoulders*  Get it if you, like it.

And then all the bargaining involved!  Something I really don't understand is when to bargain and when to not.  One time, a man asked me for 260 RMB for painted glass, and I said no way, and he just shook his head, took the object out of my hand, and shooed me away.  Other times, people don't leave me alone.  As soon as I look at something, they keep shouting prices after me, even as I am walking away.  How do you know when to bargain and when to not?  And how do you know that however low you get, you're still getting ripped off?  Overall, if you can bargain effectively, it's very satisfying, but if not, you'll find yourself sweating in the heat, wondering how much you overpaid for something.

Tags: bargaing, china, xian

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