Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Boiling Point

Oh holy matrimony, Batman! The Candyman has gotten a hold of The Thirty Something Bride's blog! I have to admit, I'm curious as to what he's got up his sleeve regarding the sex blog. I'd like to subtly remind The Candyman that family members read this blog. 'Nuff said. However, I do think the poor man is allowed a little leeway - I have been MIA since June 8th. I think we both have sex on the brain.

First, I love the responses The Candyman is getting! So cool! Thanks to my fellow bridal bloggers and followers! Second, many thanks to The Candyman for stepping up and into blog-master in my absence. I couldn't even get onto Blogger for any website, much less my own in the last city I was in, Fuzhou, China. Damn Communists. I am now in ChangAn, which is close to Shenzhen, which is close to Hong Kong. The closer I get to Hong Kong, the happier I get and the more Internet access I have. I have to say it, I've reached my Chinese boiling point. I've been here for 16 days with 9 more to go and I want to start murdering people. I miss home. I miss obese Americans. I miss ordering my food by speaking, rather than pointing. I'm tired of eating my knees in coach class on China Southern airlines. I'm tired of the constant staring. There are so many Westerners here now - it's nothing like the old days when I was the only round-eye in town. You'd think they'd be used to it, or me, by now. Sadly, no.

I have to make a few things clear - make no mistake, I am the foreigner here. I am the one out of my element. The customs are not mine. I try to fit in as best I can though. I try to learn the language, but Mandarin is hard. It doesn't help that all the little villages I go to have different dialects anyway, so whatever I learn to say is wrong somewhere. There are just little things that drive me mad. First, the personal space issue. Here, it's a LOT closer than anywhere else I've been. People are just all up in your grill constantly. Waiters/waitresses hover over your shoulder when you eat, leaping to action at the slightest non-existent inclination that you might need something.

Although, there are little things that are sweet. Today I visited a factory in a Fuzhou village. Fuzhou is a mountain town on the southern coast of China. This factory had been a sub-contractor for a major factory my company used to do business with. This major factory has had massive internal conflicts and is quickly dissolving, much to it's sub-contractor's chagrin. So, a smarty-pants subcontractor got his own export license and invited me to visit his factory. Apparently, I was the first Gweilo (slang for 'white person') to ever set foot on his turf. He was mucho happy about this and drove me himself to the airport - quite an honor by Chinese standards. He also hooked me up with some local tea (the Fujian province if uber-famous for it) which will make The Candyman verrrrrry happy.

Sadly, when I got to the airport and checked in, I found out that my flight was delayed an hour. Left-overs from the level 1 typhoon we'd experienced the night before. Sweet!

I am now at the World's Most Annoying Hotel. I swear, I just don't get it. Here's the scoop: this hotel caters to Westerners and has been around for about 10 years. It's chock full of Americans and Europeans scooping up goodies to export to various countries from a plethora of Chinese ports. Yet not one person here seems to speak any semblance of English other than the bellboys, who really have the least use for it, in my opinion. These guys actually make conversation with me in the elevator.
Them: Welcome, miss. Where you from?
Me: The United States
Them: Ah, America. First time you ChangAn?
Me: No, I practically live here.
Them: Huh?
Me: Nevermind.
Them: I think you very beautiful.
Me: Really? You are very handsome.
Them: *looking down and away* Oh, I do not think this is true.
Me: Left or right to my room?
Them: Left.
This is the most extensive conversation I've had with an employee here.

The waitresses in the Japanese restaurant where I like to grab a quick roll or two, seem totally baffled by their own menu, printed in both English and Mandarin. I point to "California Roll" and they seem confused, write something down, run away to get a supervisor, come back and write something down again. Order the unagi nigiri and repeat. Order the grilled mushrooms and repeat. It seems part of the service protocol is to run back and forth to my table to get my order, serve or constantly move shit around on my table. I am left handed. I move things around to suit this (sake cup, chopstick rest, plates, soy sauce bowl). Every time I do this, they come to my table and rearrange it, AS I'M EATING. Every time, I have to shoo them away and rearrange again. This happens at least three times during the course of a 20 minute dinner. They finally stop when I shoo and scowl simultaneously. Eating here is exhausting. I swear every time I come here I'm going to order room service, but in reality, the sushi is good and it's not offered on the room service menu. Damn it all to hell.

I get to stay in The Most Annoying Hotel for three days, then I'm to Zuhai for a day and then back to Hong Kong to pick up luggage, repack and head out to India. Have I mentioned I'm exhausted?

So while this is more annoying-life oriented, then wedding related, I needed to vent. So far I'm on my 6th hotel, with only 3 more to go! I do have other wedding stuff to blog about, but I needed to get my bitch on, y'know. It happens.


  1. That would drive me crazy! I hope things start getting better!

  2. Just wanted to give you a shout out...I have really been enjoying your blog the past weeks and your adventures are fun to read about especially since you are wedding planning along the way. It def makes my daily adventures less of adventures when I read this...enjoy every experience!

  3. I love LOVE how Candyman is posting!! Greatest thing ever!! Hope you are enjoying your time overseas. Now, I know your busy and I won't be offended for you not to pass on the award, but I did want you to be aware that I've passed on the "Splashing Award" to you. So thank you for alluring, amusing, bewitching, impressing, and inspiring me with your blog!! Like I said, you don't have to pass it on, just wanted you to be aware.


  4. Girl, We miss you in Nashville. It's like when the Fonz visited Laverne and Shirley...yeah it's cool and all, but the Fonz belongs on Happy Days, bucko! Come home!

  5. You are very beautiful, Round Eye!!!