On my second day in Zibo I hopped into a taxi heading into town, planning to go to the only store I knew about, which was a Walmart. I assumed that the driver would understand me when I asked to be taken to the Walmart, but he didn't, and as we drove through town, he grew increasingly perturbed at having a passenger who couldn't communicate her destination. I now know the name of the road that we traveled along, but at the time I knew nothing. Fortunately I spotted a private English college so I asked the taxi driver to stop, thanked and paid him, and went to the college to introduce myself. The manager kindly gave me directions written in Chinese for my shopping destinations.
If you're asking why I wanted to go to a Walmart instead of say, a quaint farmer's market, the answer is that I was looking for breakfast food I could make in the hotel room with a kettle, and all I needed was some instant oatmeal, a bowl and a spoon. I got my oatmeal -- corn-flavoured Quaker Instant oatmeal in fact.
Oatmeal appears to be a popular breakfast choice in Zibo City, often prepared as a thin gruel. To this is often added walnut powder. Or something called walnut powder that contains a lot of sugar. Walnuts themselves are relatively expensive. For breakfast on the go, the hurried commuter can pick up a long stick of sweet fried bread, the Chinese equivalent of a doughnut, from a bakery or a street vendor. They look delicious but I haven't tried them.
BTW I did force a tip on that taxi driver but that was the last time I've tipped anybody. They just don't tip here in China and when you try, they act confused and embarrassed. In fact, on more than one occasion, the taxi driver has rounded down the fare to the nearest half-yuan or yuan.