Saturday, August 12, 2006

This is how NOT to start a day

I'll take 2 litres of beer + only a little food + only 5 hours sleep for $500, Alex.

I'm sure we've all been there, but this morning was brutal for me. We went for drinks after work yesterday (got some great photos I'll upload this evenin'), then took a pedicab (well, Duncan paced it by jogging alongside) to a hotel where they have bowling lanes on the 8th floor. Odd? I thought so. On that note, should anyone visit Tang Shan and stay at the Tang Shan Hotel, don't stay on the 7th floor.

It was awesome. Nick, Michelle and Duncan vs myself, Camilla and Alistair. We lost 5 out of 6, but I bowled a 120 and a 125. We played 6 games, and drank copious quantities of Budweiser. We played from 8:30 until 11:15. Good times, but this morning was rough.

I keep trying to think of things that I'm now taking for granted but which would be novel to you folks. Today I realized there are no speed limits on roads, nor do police ever pull people over. I thought about this as the taxi we used to come back to the school from lunch was driving in the far lane into oncoming traffic and honking as if the bus and 20 other vehicles racing towards us were in the wrong. Quite fun.

Bathrooms. They suck. Period. A few places have western toilets, and all places have urinals, so men do fine. I pity women, however. They have to have superb balance to use what are essentially glorified holes in the ground. Our apartment toilet-seat is busted, it doesn't flush quite right (never caused any problems, though) and it doesn't accept toilet paper because of some rotor thinger in the flushing mechanism. So yeah... less than ideal, and I'd rather not think of how hygenic it is.

This Monday, we're all gathering for movies at mine and Alistair's place. The rules: everyone has to bring two movies they've not seen, and one of them has to be in an individually-assigned genre. I've got "period piece". Thankfully yesterday we went DVD shopping and I got The Proposition (Guy Pearce; Australian movie about 3 brothers, etc.). Michelle has war/drama, Alistair is action/adventure, Duncan is black-and-white. Nick has horror/comedy. Apparently he has a movie that fits both, and many others. Satan's Little Helper? I'd not heard of it, but he's hell-bent on us seeing it. The person whose movie is the most well received doesn't have to pay for their supper.

That's it for now. I'll work on uploading to Flickr images from last night.


callmescipio said...

hello! I have skimmed this thus far (my own students are taking most of my time at the moment!) but am so glad to hear you are enjoying yourself!

I LOVED reading that you realised how you can't plan ahead too far with teaching- what a roller coaster it can be! Hope you keep having fun! Four of my year 8 girls asked if I was engaged the other day, and when I answered in the affirmative, turned up to the next class with a homemade card for me! They can be so gorgeous sometimes.

Wayward Mind said...

Yeah, the kids are great, for the most part. However, propriety is not a forte of the Chinese. Ex: "Are you married? Why? You 27 not married?" or "Is your girlfriend very beautiful than me?" Ummm... it's sometimes very difficult to be a diplomat with these folks.

As for planning... I mostly don't plan ahead because I have all the organizational skills of a stone-drunk mob. You know me... I never had a plan nor prepared in advance for ANYTHING. ;)

The Devine Mrs. B said...

Hiya Patrice! I am just settling in after a (surprisingly uneventful) trip to Heathrow and flight back to Ottawa. Great I am relaxing and catching up on your blog. I feel for all the ladies with the hole-toilets...what happens when they're sick? What's the fun of a hangover if there's no sturdy porcelan to cling to? It just ain't right...

PG said...

Love reading your blog, as usual. I am glad things are going well. By the way, even Greece has holes in the ground in some places, and many toilets there won't accept toilet paper either. Old pipes...

It's funny what we take for granted in North America that thousand-year old civilizations don't have.

Looks like you have made some good friends. Keep writing!


Thus said...

Period Piece?

(Link to a Karate movie called, Tang Shan da Xiong)

Wayward Mind said...

Ah, yes! Fist of Fury is the English title. I should see what Tang Shan means, anyway. I know Shan is mountain. Kinda funny since this place is flat as hell except for this massive and completely unnatural looking mound that is about 800 feet high. Like a small mountain, I guess. Just looks weird with no other formations of the kind around.

As for being sick... well, I guess you have to find a place you can beg for a western toilet. Most apartments have western toilets, but older buildings and restaurants and such have the old ones.