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Guys… I am telling you the Chinese toilets are bound to kill me one day…. they are after me….. don’t laugh…. my latest encounter…. is the battle of the iPhone….

Just two weeks ago… I was rushing off to class… and I realized I had to go to the bathroom… and knowing I only have five minutes…I showed up in class..put down my books and laptop…. on the desk… and told the class I will be right back…. I am running to the bathroom.

Now I usually carry my phone in my bra… that way… my girls protect it…. but this day..I wore pants with back pockets…so ..I slide the phone there .. so I could … carry all my other stuff…..

I ran to the bathroom.. and I had waited a little longer than I should have.. so I was dancing around trying to get my pants down without peeing on myself….. then …. I heard and saw it at the same time…. I pulled down my pants and plop….. my phone fell down in the hole…. it did not stop… it did not pass go.. it just made a hole in one…. right into the toilet….

squatty potty

I really didn’t have time to think about it.. because I still had to go pee…. so I just squatted over my phone … and peed and cried at the same time…… there was no way… I was going to stick my hand down a Chinese toilet to get my phone back anyway…. and it wouldn’t have worked if I had retrieved it… so I just peed and cried…. until… all the water was out of my body….my heart was broken… that is the second phone… in two years .. I have dropped down a toilet…the other one was at a bar.. and I grabbed it.. but the water had already ruined it….the man at the Apple shop said… the water had been to contaminated…. figures…

So … the war.. is on.   Chinese Toilets vs Jo…… I already have trouble using the damn things…. my pee doesn’t want to cooperate .. and sometimes.. I can’t hit the stupid hole…… or there are days… I can’t get back up…. and there are no handles to pull yourself back up…. (which I have requested.. and no one listens to me).    Calling someone to the stall to help you stand up .. is not common behavior.

One Canadian lady.. had a funnel…. and went in the stall…. I asked her.. when she came out… and was washing it in the sink what was that for… she said… so she can hit the hole…. we both laughed….. however.. carrying a funnel to the bathroom everyday at school might look kind of strange.

My students got a big kick out of Teacher Jo dropping her phone in the toilet.   They all made phone jokes… throughout the day…. in their speeches.. they said things like…. “to use your phone to study English is very helpful… unless you have dropped it in the toilet and you have no phone” ... the little bastards…. aren’t funny…..

So… this week I am buying a new phone…. and of course Jet suggested I buy the largest phone on the I don’t throw it in the toilet…. I informed him… I didn’t THROW it … it fell….he just shook his head….no happy ending for him tonight.

So… boys and girls…. I have declared war…. and I will not let the Chinese toilet win….. I will wrap the phone tightly around my neck…. or duct tape it to my body… but it will not.. fall in the toilet again, Damn it.


until next time…..

From my friends over at Learn Mandarin Now… they have given you some important basic Chinese to get you started on learning the #1 most spoken language in the world. Enjoy!

If you want to learn Mandarin for a trip to China, you may be wondering what are the most important phrases you should learn.  Here are ten of the most important Chinese phrases for travelers.  Use any of these phrases while you’re in China to get you started learning about the culture. For more Mandarin learning tips, feel free to visit our blog Learn Mandarin Now(insert link:


  •  ‘Too expensive’:   Tai Gui Le  太贵了

This phrase is an absolute must for haggling in the market.  Don’t forget to add in a few dramatic gestures to emphasize your point.  If you haven’t quite learned your numbers, most shopkeepers keep a calculator handy and they will be happy to enter the price and show the display.

  •  ‘I don’t understand’:    Ting Bu Dong  听不懂

This single phrase will help you out in a variety of situations.  If you’re in a situation that requires further communication, the other person will go in search of someone who understands English.

  •  ‘No hot pepper’:  Bu Yao La Jiao  不要辣椒

There are a number of places in China, especially Hunan or Sichuan Province, where they really like their spicy foods.  In places like this, this phrase is vital

  •  ‘Excuse me’ (‘let me by’):   Qing Rang Yi Xia  请让一下

China is quite crowded and occasionally you may find yourself needing to get past people.  This is the polite way to ask them to move so you may pass.

  •  ‘Where’s the bathroom?’:  Ce Suo Zai Na Li   厕所在哪里?

Is there anywhere in the world that this would not be a helpful phrase?

  •  ‘Please don’t smoke’:  Qing Bu Yao Chou Yan 请不要抽烟

Many Chinese people smoke, and non-smoking signs are often ignored.  This phrase can come in handy if you’re in a no-smoking area and someone lights up, especially if you don’t smoke.

  •  ‘Thank you’:  Xie Xie  谢谢

Being polite is important and Thank you is an important polite phrase.  There are several ways to say Thank you in Chinese, but this is the one used most often.

  •  ‘Hello’:  Ni Hao   你好

This is certainly a useful phrase, but you might be surprised that it’s just as common to greet someone by asking whether they’ve eaten.

  •  ‘How much is it?’:   Duo Shao Qian?  多少钱?

Obviously, you’re going to use this phrase before you complain it’s too expensive.

  •  ‘No, no, you needn’t’:  Bu Yong, Bu Yong   不用,不用

Chinese people have a tendency to go overboard with hospitality, especially with foreigners and it’s up to you to not take advantage.  Even when you do accept a generous gesture from a Chinese person, it’s polite to demur, at least verbally.

Learning these phrases is a great way to start out with learning Chinese(insert link: and will help you get around the country while you expand your horizons.


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