Thanks for the replies folks – it’s nice to see some familiar banter on here and I miss you all dearly! I just finished a mammoth skype sesh with Rachel ‘stinky chebs, echo-basin, well of a thousand truths’ Morton and it will no doubt be the first of many catch-ups/shameless gossips. Alas I didn’t have much gossip per se as the only girls I’ve met here have been chinese. This means they are either looking for a quick marriage to a westerner or they’re a hooker. I could be generalising here but I’m pretty sure that’s scientifically accurate. The past week has gone by ridiculously quickly. Everybody here is in a mad rush so it’s obviously having an effect. People scoff at queues and courtesy as needless wastes of time and I was laughed at the other day for holding a door open. Even in the swimming pool they don’t bother with lanes and half the patrons were opting for widths while the rest of us attempted lengths. This resulted in a kind of swimming connect 4 where everyone vied for the longest straight of open water. I don’t recall nearly drowning with connect 4 mind, nor swearing quite so much. Ah yes, swearing. No-one speaks english whatsoever so I’ve become scarily accustomed to swearing at people when they annoy me, safe in the knowledge there will be no rebuke, physical or otherwise. This could go wrong though. I taught my first lesson on sunday, which is why I’m here predominantly, and it was tough, gruelling but very rewarding. There are a couple of 3 year olds in one of my classes. They can barely walk they’re so young , let alone speak a foreign language. I’ve realised early on that if I can just get them to say their name or age I’ll have been a success.
The night life here is as expected, rather variable. So far I’ve been to a 1930s burlesque house complete with free cocktails, a couple of banging neon clubs where they play dance remixes of Leona Lewis’ song at the end of Avatar (as shit as you’re imagining) and many, many restaurants. From all you can eat japanese joints (10 quid including all drinks) to chicken hot pot or indeed a weird blue-clad eatery where the whole place toasted the foreigner (me) and I taught them how to say Fernando Torres.
Next up, I have to learn chinese or at least enough so I can order food or get a taxi without phoning for help or dying. Oh and if you haven’t seen Toy Story 3 yet, stop what you’re doing and go. Best trilogy ever. Apart from Star Wars of course but that goes without saying.