We were always ready to squeeze out one more moment of fun. We liked to think we were just like those people in Berlin. We had heard it was a crazy kind of place, where people did not think about the war….

Winnie expresses these feelings in Chapter 14, talking about the time during the war when they (she, Hulan, and their husbands) were in Kunming. It illustrates the stolen moments of happiness that exist within the misery and suffering of the book. The happy moments are always heightened and wonderful because they lie beside the bad moments of war and abuse. Winnie refers to two countries that exist in a state of war, China and German, and she makes comparisons between them. She draws on the spectacle and exotic foreign qualities of Berlin, and she longs for them, for a "crazy life" in which there is only pleasure but then she says: "of course, that was Berlin. We were in Kunming" where Winnie was slowly becoming bored of mah jong and becoming sad. This quote brings together the ideas of foreign influences, the war, happiness, and suffering—which are all important subjects throughout the novel.