… And still counting.
If you have travelled in China you already know this, but if you just arrived you may be confused by the fact that Chinese people can count up to 10 with only one hand. It does not mean they have 10 fingers on one hand! I looked carefully, like most human being most of them have 5 fingers on each hand. Even better, it sounds reasonable to say that 5 fingers is the maximum a hand is able to hold in China as anywhere else on the planet. If some Galaxy Hitch Hiker can help to generalize, or not, this rule to the galaxy, he or she is more than welcomed.
The big secret, that obviously everybody can see, but that all aliens do not understand, is a special convention the Chinese people have developed in order to count up to 10 with only one hand.
One is obviously the easy one, two is easy in one way, because in France for instance we have a way to say two which is eight in China. Three is funny also, because it means "ok" in other parts of the world. Four is quite as easy as Five, which is as easy as one, already mentioned, because there are not so many ways to show five fingers with five fingers. Six is funny because again in other parts of the world it is the way young skaters, surfers and gliders mentioned they had a good one. Seven in Italy means you can't understand, eight is two, nine I forgot and ten is a hard stretching exercise for your fingers, or you need both hands to use two fingers only!? This looks like a big waste of fingers after having been so carefully using them.
I hope you got the clue, may be some pictures would make it easier to understand, try Google… No, sorry you have to use Baidu (http://www.baidu.com/) instead… but this will be another story.