Hazy Chinese memories

I’ve discovered that having a blog in a communist country is very relaxing. The blog is blocked, and the writer doesn’t have to bother. Did I constantly take notes anyway? Did I write 20+ posts offline to post as soon as I got home? Nah, I love to write, but I am lazy too, and tend to overestimate the powers of memory, thinking I will be able to recall, roughly, about 100% of my thoughts, experiences, jokes, and observations. Whereas is fact this percentage is probably closer to 5%, the other 95% being replaced by more current and immediate concerns such as “Hmmm, what shall I eat next?”.

So I was in China. Why? God knows. Because it’s on the way from NZ to the Netherlands. Because a friend of mine lives there. That’s about it, which is not a lot compared to other travelers in China that just looove the language (??), or know all about the history (I paid more attention to the discovery/invasion of Latin America), the architecture (all looks pretty much either grey or red and gold to me), or, in the case of many of the guys, come up with all sorts of reasons which are just meant to hide the fact they are there for sex with hot Chinese chicks.

After four weeks in China I can safely say that my interest in this country remains pretty much at the level it was before. Ok, maybe it increased a tiny bit, but not very much. Sure, I didn’t go to the most interesting areas so I’m sure I don’t know what I’m talking about, but I think China is just not for me. Shanghai has a nice river, but it seemed to have Amsterdam’s weather and Barcelona’s smell.

Hangzhou might have been stunning but it was hard to tell through the incessant downpour. Beijing is cool, hip, happening, but also so polluted that even my white skin never burned on sunny days (a grand total of about five days in four weeks). Of course there was a huge amount of stuff I did like, mostly the fact that there is cheap and good food everywhere. Such as meat on a stick, savory pancakes with spicy sauce, noodle soup, deep fried scorpions, baby sharks, and sea horses. (But I’d be lying if I said I tried the last three.)

I also really liked the shopping, the nightlife, and the first temple I went to. And, like on every trip, I met some pretty amazing people. So even though China is not for me, it’s safe to say I’m glad I went anyway.

Now I am back in the Netherlands which is ‘home’, and I guess it kind of feels that way. I thought I had my plans for the next few months figured out but things happened and now I am not so sure, and I keep reviewing all the options over and over and over again. A wise man told me to just not think about it for the next couple of days while I am getting over my jetlag, but clearly he doesn’t understand how my mind works. I guess I could try to not make any real decisions until, say, Monday.

It’s like somewhere in the back of my mind I think I know what I want (passionate sex with a hot Swede? No! Well, yeah sure, but that’s not what I meant!), but I can’t reach it and put in into words. Anyway, I need to figure it out. Let’s see where all this will take me, but it’d better be a quick process with a nice paycheck.

Did I mention I am very jetlagged, and also high on painkillers to fight off flu-symptoms, so I shouldn’t be taken too seriously? In fact, I can barely remember my previous sentence. I mean, did I mention I am jetlagged? I don’t remember….is it time for wine yet?

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2 Responses to Hazy Chinese memories

  1. I think I’ll be up to finding a job and place to live in Amsterdam… How is your job working out for you? What will you do when that ends (it was temporary right?)?

  2. Sara says:

    Nice to see you back! I like you think China sounds interesting but I’ve never had a burning desire to go. Maybe some day. So now that you are back home what will you be up to? Oh and try a neti pot for that congestion. Just tried mine and I love it!

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