Thursday, July 2, 2009

From 'tall and fat' to 'average and normal'

Even though I am struggling with my running/fitness there are a few things over here that makes me so happy I almost feel like singing and dancing on the streets.

1. I’m not a giant anymore. Being 175 cm in Finland is completely normal, it's sort of the average length for girls over here. In fact, I think there are at least 3 girls in the office that are taller than me. Not to mention all the men! O la la, here we are talking about the society of tall people! I have to say that it’s a nice change. I mean, I can even wear heels without feeling like a flagpole! (not that I ever do it but still, there is an opportunity here!)

2. I’m not fat anymore. In fact, over here I’m considered quite normal, and even a bit… (oh, do I dear to say this?) slim? Nah, OK, I take it back, but from (almost always) being the ‘biggest girl in the room’ in China I now often look around me and realize that I’m the smallest person around (weeeeird!).

I don’t know how or when this has happened but people have really ballooned here in Scandinavia. Both men and women are not only big, but like, really BIG, and 90% of the skinny girls on the streets are lanky teenagers (and who wasn’t skinny as a teenager? I personally looked like a chopstick. Chubby, apple-cheeked kid, and then skinny as a teenager). Although it’s kind of scary to see how big people have become (I keep asking myself ‘why?!’ because they have SO MUCH good food over here! Endless options of fish and low fat and low sugar… and some really fantastic nature to go out and play in… but obviously you don’t see it that way when you’re living in it every day. A friend of mine also pointed out that it might be the alcohol. People over here love their drink).

3. My feet are absolutely normal. Size 39 is actually the average female feet size here. Meaning my size always sells out first in the store. Bummer. But at least I can BUY shoes here. That’s not always the case in China.

4. My nose is not a big nose. It’s absolutely normal.

5. My arms are proportional and not ‘too big’ that a friend of mine pointed out some months ago over dinner. All that body pumping have paid off! You can aaaaaalmost see the slightest of a biceps muscle if you look up close… or maybe that’s just me? (Yeah, probably).

6. And then, finally, the best bit: NOBODY IS LOOKING AT ME ANYMORE!!! Except for an dirty ol’ man who I caught trying to glance under my skirt the other day (creep!) nobody have stared, giggled or pointed at me during 5 wonderful, stare-free days. This is truly a great thing. I understand that being flagpole tall, wide, big-feet and blonde in China results in curious stares as well as ‘hellooooooo!’s yelled from the left and the right, but to NOT have all that for a change is actually rather nice.

So… for now I’ll enjoy all these changes until I get bored with them, start complaining that ‘it’s boring to look like everyone else!’ and start wishing I was back in China…

Yey, I'm normal!!


Maynard Black said...

Must have been nice! I wasn't skinny as a teenager... I was a lil' plump. It wasn't until my late teens and early adulthood that it came off.

johnnie lim said...

I know the feeling. good for you.
i too had my share of joy when I lost about 2-3 inch on my waist line after working out at the gym.
the only lament i have is my pants are too loose now and i have to get new pants. i had a personal trainer as well and she took me to various stages and now i am happy to say i am quite tone up. I am still working on the abs . my dream is to have a 6 pack. not quite there yet, but eventually it will(i hope)

Anonymous said...

aaaah, I envy you. I can't wait to be home to blend in!!!

Pete In Syracuse said...

Ya! the pointing & laughing - what do the Chinese do when that happens to them or doesn't it happen to them the same way? It must be like a form of torture after awhile if your laughed at everytime you go out. I laughed a bit at this posting not at you but, because of the fact we as people like to have our individuality accentuated in one form or another but, because of your curcumstances the opposite is now sought. This really is a vacation for you I see that happening inside & out! Enjoy!!

Emmy said...

I do love your blog! Glad you can feel "normal" for a while :)

Anonymous said...

Not to worry Jonna. To me, you'll always be too bulky, muscular and butch.


I was told by an ex classmate who was from Germany that Scandanavians were the biggest of all Europeans. Back in the days of the Vikings, if you saw the big bastards, you ran like hell!

No wonder you're such a giantess J.

To make you feel better, just remember that no matter how fat you are told you are, I will always be fatter. (sad but true)


mtl said...

I'm now living with a super tall housemate, with a super tall girlfriend, and they have super tall friends. I feel so short when I hang out with them -_-...

Jonna Wibelius said...

maynard -I was the opposite.. chubby-skinny and theeeeen came the hips and bye bye chopstick figure! :)

Johnnie -great work!!! I love when work out pay off. It's such a nice feeling when u know you've worked hard and it actually makes a difference. Keep up the work out regime!

Kanmuri -Soon, soon you can blend in too. It is absolutely lovely yes!

Pete -yeah, some days the staring and pointing doesn't bother me but then there are bad days... ehhhhh. Anyways, it's awesome to have a change of scene!

Emmy -ah, I'm so happy to hear that. And yes, 'feeling normal' rules :) hihi!

Adrian -not sure about that. I've already decided that when I'm old I'm gonna be a fattie and eat cookies and pastries every day... :)

dfvxc -haha, funny... different worlds! And u can't really wear heels.... ;)

WoAi said...

The funny thing is people stare at me much les (not at all) in London compared to China, but I am Chinese!

The Casual Observer said...

Size 39 shoes? Those are huge. Mine are only size 10.

Oh. European sizes. That's different.


tamara said...

I know exactly how you feel! I'm average height and average shoe size and slender in America, but in Japan I felt like a big fat freak who couldn't buy shoes :)

Moving to New York from Osaka was amazing--all of a sudden nobody looked at me twice anywhere I went, and I could buy clothes and shoes again!

Unfortunately I was also shocked at how many overweight people there were in the States--and I don't just mean fat, I mean there are some people here that will make your jaw drop. It's really sad.

Enjoy the feeling, and carry it with you back to China--you're beautiful exactly the way you are, you're just not Chinese :)