So. I've been doing some research on Baoding - desperately trying to find an English-speaking or American school for the kids and NOT SUCCEEDING. Desperately trying to get into contact with some LDS people in Baoding so we can have church services (so far, not succeeding...) with someone besides ourselves, etc.
And I came across this little nugget of information - Baoding is where these little ball thingeys came from:
They're called, quite obviously, Baoding Balls. Ben had some when we first got married, actually, and I was like, "What ARE these??" He told me that you kind of roll them around in your hand, and they're supposed to bring you serenity and also give your hands strength and dexterity:
I think he (or let's be honest, I) took them to D.I. shortly thereafter. But I do remember that they have these little chimes inside of them that make these cute little tinkley noises when you roll the balls around.
I told Pooh about Baoding Balls and asked if she wanted me to bring some back for her. She said, "Um, no, I don't really feel the need for tinkling balls in my life." I laughed.