Check this out...
That my excellent friends is thinly sliced Wagyu beef. The smoke effect is from dry ice I believe. This was my first experience with "hot pot". Hot pot involves having a small cauldron of boiling liquid at the table and putting different things in to cook. The liquid we used was chicken broth. It was also seasoned with a bunch of garlic and ginger.
We had veggies, chicken, and the beef. It was excellent. I'm told most hot pot is only super hot boiling water with some spices thrown in. I'm glad I'm remaining open to trying new things. It would be easy to fall back on ordering pizza, burgers, and fried chicken. Fried chicken? Yeah. Believe it or not, there are many more Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants here in China than there are in the states. I've had a couple of pizzas, but that's only seeking variety. I'm still leaning most nights towards food experiments.
In other interesting news the RMB has dropped steadily while I've been here. Currently the ratio compared to the U.S. dollar is 7.01 RMB to 1.00 USD. Before I came it was around 6:1. I had to choose how I wanted to be paid before the year started. I choose USD, which means they have to convert to RMB given the exchange rate. Instead of a check for 36,000 RMB I expect a check for 42,000 RMB. The exchange rate has profited me and extra $1000. Not bad because prices here remain the same. The Chinese dollar will likely continue to fade if they don't lift more Covid restrictions. We'll see.