Sunday, 23 November 2008

Buffet Blowout

I have just come home from a birthday party of an ex-Web employee's daughter. She was one today, or should I say two today, seeing as I am in China. For those who aren't aware, as soon as a baby is born in China (in many parts anyway) they are immediately one year of age, there is no counting of days and months, they are just one for the whole year. It is just like how we count the years: we say it is 2008 now, but if we use the Western way of counting age, we are only in our 2007th year and 11th month.

We arrived at the party more than one hour late because of work finishing at 7pm today. This meant that the buffet dinner was almost eaten by the time we stepped into the function room at the hotel. It was free, so I can't complain. I wasn't very hungry anyway, Kimi had bought me Papa John's as she was so excited that it had opened in Wenzhou today (although it was paid for with my money). I hope the baby likes the gift we bought -- it is a big telephone that can speak English and Chinese.

We had a much more pleasant night tonight than last night. We had planned to go on a night out for our new teacher, Kristian from Canada. Unfortunately the planning had been left to the wrong person and nobody had a clue what we were doing. Most of the others were working so Kimi and I waited until 7pm for them to finish -- I was still only semi-conscious after the trauma of shoe shopping in the afternoon. Eventually we decided to go The Victoria Hotel for the buffet. When we got there -- just like tonight -- it was too late, and most of the food had been obliterated. I couldn't be bothered going anywhere else and would have been satisfied to sit down and start eating, but Kimi wasn't having any of it (she was right, it was not worth the expense). After some talking, we decided to go elsewhere, left the hotel and caught a cycle-rickshaw.

It was Saturday night, so things were extremely busy in Wenzhou. The rickshaw driver decided the pavement was a better option than the road for driving on. As we rushed past a crowd of people, I felt us hit something on the right hand side. I looked and saw that we had collided with a man's leg. The driver stopped, got off the bike and began apologising. The man was furious, shouting and pointing at his leg all of the time. I didn't know what I was supposed to do in the middle of this, people were crowding around and starring right at us. Eventually the driver said "sorry" for the 100th time and we drove off.

A few minutes later, we pulled up outside the restaurant of Kimi's choosing, but it looked different. My worst fear came to fruition: they had changed the restaurant into a hot pot restaurant. After eating the hot pot here, I have not had any appetite for it again. The waiters had set the table and were ready to take our order. With a little embarrassment we got up, apologised, and left. We had no clue where to go next.

After strolling around for a few minutes we ended up near a cheap noodle shop, a place we regularly frequent. They serve brilliant fried rice, so in defeat we went in. I felt terrible that we had ended up in this place and weren't with Kristian having fun. Fortunately I spoke to him and found out that he was so tired he didn't even want to come out and went home not long after arriving at the hotel. We have planned to do something after work this week which should be much less of a hassle I hope.

Kimi and I were on our way home when we decided to buy a dessert from a dessert shop inside the large Intime department store. These shops specialize in fruit desserts, especially ones containing a lot of mango and coconut. We made our order, but unbeknown to Kimi, she had made a mistake: Instead of ordering mango with coconut ice, she had ordered mango with coconut yoghurt. "Just as the night couldn't get any worse" she said with complete sincerity. I ate the yoghurt and she ordered the ice. I do hope we never have any real problems to deal with in the future.

Mango, black sticky rice, and the disaster: coconut yoghurt

Tomorrow I have been asked to go to Wenzhou university to talk to the students about how to improve their English in a short time. In all honesty, I haven't a clue what I am going to talk about. I don't even know the kind of level I should be aiming for. The only reason they are sending me is to advertise the training centre, unfortunately my sales pitch is not going to be up to scratch.


Elwin said...

I just read about the Papa John's opening ceremony at another bbs, and also some photo introduction of the food there, which looks so good. I'll try to take a shot for that these days.

Wayne Chao said...

wow! A really tangled night!!it must be exhausting!!

and u will come to wenzhou uni today??! Mate,u should tell u earlier and maybe we can have a drink or something^_^

Chris said...

We should go to Papa John's together sometime, it's really good. Much better than Pizza Hut I think. They've built it directly opposite to Pizza Hut too. I don't know what the thinking behind that was, unless they're incredibly confident.

Oh, sorry Wayne, I should have mentioned it sooner. I have just finished writing about my experience there. The place is huge, I couldn't believe it. I needed a drink after my class too, haha.

大眼睛熊 said...

That night was horrible, we shouldve stayed at home eating pizza and watching a movie... then maybe the power would suddenly went off when u see a familiar police box shows up on ur balcony. ..

Chris said...

:) I would have liked that much more Kimi!