Not knowing Chinese has already been frustrating at times. However, knowing only a few sentences and shopping words in Chinese is even worse. I understand some of the things being said, and I want to communicate more, but my language skills while shopping are basically limited to numbers, asking for a reduction in price, and saying thank you.
Yesterday we bought some house plants and some dishes (it's finally starting to feel like an apartment and not an empty warehouse!). I can't wait until I have a better grasp on the language so that I won't feel like an idiot standing there when a Zhongguoren (Chinese person) is speaking to me. But from what I hear and see, that won't happen for a few years. I guess I can try to be patient. ;)
So, what is the lesson that I have been learning in all of this? I have realized that it is far more frustrating and humiliating to know only a tiny bit of something than to be in complete ignorance. I could expound about the ways that this lesson applies not only to language learning, but also to knowledge of a skill or hobby, knowledge of current evens, or even knowledge of the Bible and biblical topics. Instead, I'll let you roll these thoughts around if this is an idea that causes you to ponder.
I have a feeling that China will hack away at my pride until there isn't much left. And that is more than okay.