"'He is American' warned my mother, as if I had been too blind to notice. A waigoren."
This shows the cultural differences between American and Chinese cultures. The parents want her to marry a Chinese man, instead of an American one.
"She said it was faith that kept all these good things coming our way, only I thought she said 'fate,' because she couldn't pronounce the 'th' sound in 'faith.'"
The whole story plays on the blend between faith and fate and this is where that is set up.
"She had never swum a stroke in her life, but her faith in her own nengkan convinced her that what these Americans couldn't do, she could. She could find Bing."
"I know now that I had never expected to find Bing, just as I know now that I will never be able to save my marriage. My mother tells me, though, that I should still try"
"And I think now that fate is shaped half by expectation, half by inattention. But somehow when you lose something you love, faith takes over.