Warning: You might be reading this and begin to think “oh that’s about me”. Well this blog is basically my 14 year old secret diary… but I’m 22, and it’s public. So I’m sorry.
The week leading up to my previous post was productive, busy and draining. I’d realised I’d lost some weight after hitting the gym a bit and completed my first crazy full week, I had woke up on the morning of Monday the 2nd of April with a big sigh. During this morning’s morning I could barely prise open my eyes because the super-glue called “no fucking way” lining my lids was quickly drying. The week leading up to today wasn’t really a week at all. My working week suffocates me with 52 hours of not being in the house but there was yet another public holiday last week, so I only worked 2/7 days and I’m now feeling like a couch potato.
I don’t utilise my days off properly, especially when you consider the fact that I AM IN CHINA. I use them to plan lessons which is the heart-string pulling, violin playing sob story of a teacher but it’s fucking hard okay. Even when I had 3 days off I didn’t really do anything. Jeez, I’m actually sat here trying to think about what I did 3 days ago and I can’t remember. I had the conversation about memory with Jack from home; we were chatting about how long we’ve known each other, way over 10 years, I reminded him about the terribly vomit-worthy crush I had on him in Year 8/9… For years I stuffed that crush under the carpet, pretended it never happened and smiled awkwardly whenever his name was brought up. Jack, apparently doesn’t recall how disgustingly weird I was (I think he’s just saying I wasn’t weird so that I don’t feel bad). I was also able to tell him what leaving song his class sung at the Year 6 leaving assembly. That was 12 years ago. But I can’t seem to remember what the fuck I did 72 hours ago.
I can pinpoint a couple of moments from last week though so I’ll go right ahead and guide you through them in chronological order. Ever since that night I got completely hammered, threw up next to that band member and locked myself out of my apartment at 3am I had refused to even breathe the word “Beersmith” let alone enter that building EVER EVER again. However, Adi and Mike were in Beijing and after dinner I thought I’d take them to see the skyline in the CBD district and then on for a pint in Beersmith. On approaching the glistening stage lights of the pub I interjected Adi’s conversation (rude I know), to inform her and Mike what had happened and that I was certain I’d turn a fiery shade of red when walking in. The waitress sat us in eyesight of the band so inevitably I kept my head down and eyes on my beer, any time my eyes wandered I mentally punished myself because I did NOT want to be noticed.
The band took a break and within a couple minutes Danny, the member from Manchester who plays the guitar, began heading in my direction with a smile on his face. He was the guy that ensured I returned home safely when I was stumbling all over the place, therefore as soon as he entered ear range I opened my mouth and spoke about 100 words a minute. “I’m so sorry for how I was, I’ve been avoiding showing my face here again, I can’t believe I got so drunk, I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry!!”
After hiding in a shell of humiliation for 2 months I slowly emerged, and he explained how silly I was for avoiding the the pub because of what happened. As a fellow Brit he knows too well the state that we can get in after going on the sesh and he wanted to make sure I was okay. I entered the pub thinking that the story I’d told everyone about me “throwing up on his feet” was just the Drama Queen in me, but nope turns out Danny had to wash his jeans and his shoes because I did in fact chunder all over him.
Reading my complaints on lesson planning gives you deja vu I know, but I think the event of doing it has become a hobby for me. Planning lessons usually comes post-gym and a little after lunch so I head to a cafe named Tribe which is just a short 5 minute walk away. I am so blessed to live in such a commercial area really. I unpack my Teachers Books, planning diary and Macbook and then sit down and scan the menu with hungry eyes, the food is western but not a “hang your head in shame and feel guilty about consuming” kind of western, it’s packed with healthy goodness. Looking down at a bowl full of colour gets my tastebuds doing a little jig and you must be a bit deluded if you disagree. One evening I ordered a falafel packed salad alongside my Mocha and it was the best bowl of rabbit food I ever inhaled – a bed of kale and spinach covered in shredded carrot, red cabbage, cucumber, roasted chickpeas and BEET HUMMUS. Okay firstly lets all agree that hummus is revolutionary, made by angels and blended with gold. Secondly, I want to tell you that that red spoonful of beet hummus that blessed my salad was the best kind of hummus to have ever touched my lips. I’m going to work my way through the veggie side of their amazing menu because I’ve decided that’s my new hobby… pretending I’m a professional teacher who never has time to make her own food just so I can mask the fact that I fucking love food. So that was my Thursday.
In the past few weeks, (before Hong Kong) I had been chatting to a really great guy from Manchester who happens to be a private pilot here in Beijing (I’m kind of regretting starting to write this because he will probably read this, lol hi), we’ve met a couple times and it’s been great we saw Black Panther together (which by the way is the best Marvel film to have been created to date, my mouth was wide open for every second of it). But… of course there is a but, it’s me. If I wasn’t a human who had the grey cloud of “however” hanging over my head I’d probably be in a relationship of 6 years. BUT, I just kept dwelling on the fact that he is so out of my league. I’m so out, under and buried in concrete 6ft below his league that it definitely makes me hella shyer than I am. Uncomfortable? No, not uncomfortable but maybe a little more aware of what I say, how I act and how I look. This happened with “red-alert” Wes. I just kept thinking “nah, he’s not as into me as I am into him” so anytime there was a slow-ass reply I’d think “yup that’s it I’m a flannel!” Perhaps I’m just paranoid because he’s a really cool guy and my fucking heavens above he is just gorgeous so I’m like “What?!”
You know when you just don’t know.
Friday was one of those days where you know it’s going to be lovely but you’re not quite expecting it to be even more lovely than you first thought. A little backstory: way back in January I matched with a Chinese guy on Tinder. He doesn’t fit into that Chinese stereotype that you’re probably conjuring up in your head right now, he has tattoos all over his arms, neck, a couple on his face and his legs, he wears baggy skater clothing and rides a BMX. Totally not what you’d expect right? We’ve been speaking ever so slightly since but have not yet met up because I’ve been busy, but I asked him to go for coffee Friday.
At first I didn’t consider it to be a date but the ladies who I met later in the evening seemed to suggest it was. We headed to Costa for our coffees – yep even in China I can’t resist the place – sat down and began chatting away. He is even more cooler in person, he’s just really chilled out and his tattoos are so sick, he made me hold my arm out on the table so he could examine mine too. He taught himself English a couple years ago and he is actually really good at speaking and understanding, unlike the beautiful Holiland guys who i’ll probably never speak to unless my Chinese improves. I think he was super nervous though because I noticed he spoke really quick and his hands were shaking a little… it was really endearing, I’m not sure why he could’ve been nervous I’m not that great. He’s also a huge Harry Potter fan which is a big fat green flag in my opinion. We were going to meet last night for a film but dopey sprained his ankle when he was on his BMX and it’s now gross and swollen, so when he can walk like a normal human and not a brain-dead zombie we’ll go to the cinema.
Friday night I met up with a couple fabulous friends for “go with the flow drinks” where you order alcoholic beverages and exchange questioning eyes to whether you’ll end up white girl wasted in bed at 1am. I will neither confirm nor deny whether that white girl was me but there were three of us one Chinese woman and one black woman but I’m not permitted to confirm nor deny. We were at The Local to begin with where we fed ourselves, sank a couple of bev-a-rah-jays and chatted about our love lives then we scooted on over to Mix where we drank fake alcohol and shook our booties at the early hours of 11pm. This fake alcohol thing is soul destroying – one moment I can be fully aware of my surroundings and the next I’m stumbling out of the door heading home. I wake the next day with no recollection of how I got from A to B and have several bruises all over my leg. We got there incredibly prematurely which meant the atmosphere lacked and the music wasn’t great but we still managed to have a good time in each others company.
You can take a wild stab in the dark at what my Saturday looked like. Slow, blurry and incredibly hungover but I had to snap into action in the afternoon because I had dinner plans with a special human in the evening. We’d been planning to meet for dinner in April since before I moved to China and the fact that it has come and gone just proves how quickly time moves here. Dr. Victor Ramirez Ladron De Guevara, my lecturer from University, was in Beijing. As I walked down the street with grey brick buildings either side of me I see this happy little man stood by the lamppost looking hopefully at the crowd that passes him by. He spotted me and we both grinned at each other and gave each other a big hug, it was such a relief to see someone so familiar it made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. We dined on traditional roast duck for tea and reminisced about lots of memories, people and places. One moment I brought up was the time I had a classic Jodie devising strop within the first month of being at University and he laughed so hard into his food. We had such a wonderful evening and it was lovely hearing about how everyone still at Uni is doing and by the sounds of it it seems like everyone is smashing it.
What am I doing now? Well, I’m in Tribe and it’s buy one get one free on sandwiches and wraps so, I take this offer and order a mushroom and cheese toastie and a tofu & egg wrap with the thought to take the wrap in a takeaway box. Yeah no I ate the toastie and the wrap and I’m really full and regretting that decision.
Till next week x