Wednesday, March 14, 2012


There's a little boy at school who, whenever he sees me, pretends to be talking on the phone with me. He makes the telephone with his hand, thumb to ear and pinky to mouth, and says repeatedly, "wei? wei? wei?"

"Wei" is a common way to answer the phone in China, and it's pronounced like "way." I'm guessing it's an informal way to say hello, or maybe it's like saying "I'm here" or "I'm listening." I'm told that people don't really use it in face to face conversation, just over the phone.

So then I put my fake telephone to my head and talk back to him, "Is this Bingo?" (yes his name is Bingo). "Bingo! Nice to hear from you, how are you?" And of course he doesn't understand what I'm saying since he's only 5 and I'm speaking English. So I've started saying "No way!" in response to his "wei?" and it cracks him up so bad. And now the other kids in his class have started doing it to each other… "wei?"… "no wei!" and they laugh like crazy. I love kids.

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