Hello my lovelies!
Excuse my tardiness with this blog post, I know that you all probably spent all of yesterday frantically clicking ‘refresh’ on blog.com waiting for the site to come back up, only to no avail.
‘Twas undoubtedly an interesting weekend. After work on Friday, I played a game of pool with Jamie and Leo followed by some serious BBQ action in the far north of Zhuhai.
There wasn’t any BBQ because Jamie led us to a place that supposedly had a massive BBQ but upon arrival it was nowhere to be found. Upon asking the in-the-know locals, it was determined that the BBQ was there everyday except for that Friday because of “management”. Very peculiar. We settled for an outdoor restaurant with many fellow 珠海人 (Zhuhai-ers) dining at its tables. Headed off to an Irish bar in the Ningxi area of Zhuhai and then called it a night.
On Saturday we (myself, Jamie and Helen [Jamie’s FIANCÉE]) met up with some people in the CouchSurfing community and went to Dong’ao Island – about an hour ferry ride from Zhuhai Xiang Zhou ferry port. The ferry port was crazy – the citizens of Zhuhai are clearly huge fans of weekend getaways to Zhuhai’s 140+ islands!! We finally arrived and met up with everyone and got to an amazing secluded beach and swam, relaxed and played some frisbee. When diving for a frisbee and fighting over possession with fellow intern Frank, my right hand fingers sustained some damage and were pretty gross. Soon enough they were dripping an appetising yellow goo! Miamiamiamiam
After sunset, we all had a nice BBQ on the beach along with some brandy and beer and spent the rest of the night on the beach. We did spot a few UFO’s in the distance but fearlessly drank the night away!
Sunday we woke up early (sleeping in tents in Southern China is more akin to sleeping in an oven…) and headed back to Zhuhai and I headed over to the resplendent Sun Yat-sen University Hospital and got my wounds cleaned and bandaged and now they’re already healing quite nicely!
That’s about it for this past weekend’s escapes – forgive me for the lack of photos but my computer is not being cooperative at the moment so you’ll have to enjoy this generic picture of Dong’ao pulled from Google images!!
I cannot believe that my last day of work is a week from today and I am leaving China in 8 days to head off to Macau and Hong Kong!!!
Don’t worry, though, I am going white water river rafting this upcoming weekend so there will be one more good blog post come next Monday! 😉
Last night we all went go karting once again in Gongbei! The experience was equally exhilarating as last time although I find myself lamenting the lack of propositions to engage in halotry – perhaps I looked considerably less desperate this time around. Who knows.
Let’s do this chronologically, though.
Before go karting, we, i.e. myself, Jamie, Leo, Nicolas, James and Andy(Andrea) met up at Alain’s Belgium Beer Bar (A’S BBB) to enjoy a few bottles of scrumptious Belgian beer along with some over-due dosage of western gastronomy. I had the most deliciously sweet beer ever. I would compare it to … nothing. Perhaps it is better described as what Willy Wonka would brew in his factory. I can just image the fat German kid aka Augustus Gloop downing the illustrious Belgian brew from the quaint waters (beer?) of the alcoholic paradise candy river. Yes, it was that good.
Most of us had a delightful pizza which was surprisingly lusciously toothsome. Although a no-contender compared to a real, fresh Italian pizza, the pizza at Alain’s was, nevertheless, legit.
When it came to paying the bill, however, the tides changed. Our favourite advertising/media firm Delta Bridges had a profile of Alain’s on their website and had a large image proclaiming that there was 30% off all alcohol from 17.30 to 20.30 EVERY NIGHT! The discount, however, was seemingly nonexistent! We pushed for it but the manager claimed that it was only valid for one type of beer. NB: the ad said ALL alcohol. After we pushed some more, the cheque went down again but for an apparently random amount.
Brief review of Alain’s: delicious food, illustrious beer and lacklustre management.
GOKARTING, as previously stated, was wonderful. It was Leo’s FIRST TIME EVER driving any type of vehicle and I must say that he managed quite well. After the first round, Jamie was 1st and I was 2nd. The second round, however, was a bit bizarre. During the first round I had noticed that they were wielding the frames of some gokarts together and I was lucky enough to have the pleasure of driving one of these polished turds for my second round. What a disaster. The car kept spinning out and was just plain crazy. Moreover, on my last lap, my brakes stopped working and I smashed into a barrier at the first bend. Wonderful.
Damn you, polished jalopy turd.
A typhoon is coming to Zhuhai. JOY!
Write to you all on Monday
PS – Make sure to check out the pictures along with the score cards from last night in the gallery!
你们好 mes tendres chouchous!
Last night Jamie (the big bad boss of the Zhuhai office) and I made pilgrimage to Guangzhou, the capital of the Guangdong province, about 2 hours north of Zhuhai to see Liverpool FC’s start to their 2011 Asian tour. While I am not a big fan of footy, I am a huge fan of random experiences and this fit the bill perfectly. We took the new, high-speed rail from Zhuhai north to Guangzhou south and then took the also new metro system right to the stadium. While we had originally been expecting that the turnout would be low, there were thousands of fans around the stadium, eagerly queuing up to enter. Surprisingly enough, the Liverpool fans (I am assuming that if they were sporting a Liverpool jersey, they were a “fan”) outnumbered the Sunray Cave FC (the Guangdong FC – 广东日之泉足球俱乐部) at least two to one.
Upon entering the stadium, the police confiscated my war drum (see photo of the big empty water jug). I was heartbroken and crestfallen – but still managed to make quite a bit of noise despite being deprived of my war drum!
It was an exciting match, with Liverpool winning 4-3 over Sunray Cave FC. SCFC did manage to get in two goals in the last few minutes of the game, at the dismay of the Liverpool fans.
After failing to get a taxi (Guangzhou is notorious for its lack of supply of cabs!), we got a bit lost in an odyssey of aimlessly wandering on foot along with some (very) unhelpful metro directions. Despite our hardships, we finally made it to our final destination: Chinese outdoor BBQ (THE BEST!) along with the infamous dice game!!!
The rest is hazy.
I am off to Chengdu in the Sichuan province tomorrow (flying from Guangzhou airport – can’t get enough of that city!) so expect another blog post come Monday!!!
Enjoy the photos
Bacioni fortissimi dappertutto
So, despite my “Crocodile Park” blog post saying that I was heading off to Macao this past weekend, I ended up going to 桂山岛 – Guishan Island, or “Turtle Island” with some friends. The island is home to (I am guessing here…) 500 or so people. It definitely has a small island/fishing village vibe to it. The beach was OK – it was no Sanya but it was definitely better than what’s here in Zhuhai! The beach on Saturday was bumping but Sunday we were the only ones there! A thunderstorm was rolling in late afternoon on Saturday but luckily the local police gave us a ride back to our hotel from the beach right before the storm hit! Now that’s rendering service to the public!! ☺
Saturday night was filled with delicious, fresh seafood – the best shrimp that I’ve ever had the pleasure to sink my teeth into along with some mildly inebriated karaoke. Although a Japanese import, Chinese girls have an insatiable hunger for karaoke that leaves you drunk and with ringing ears come last call.
Sunday we woke up, had breakfast, bought some random foodstuffs at the local general store and headed over to the beach. I lost my goggles. ‘Twas beyond heartbreaking.
At about 16.30 we had to depart from the illustrious Turtle Island and head back to Zhuhai.
Looking for cheap flights to go somewhere next weekend so expect something good come next Monday!
Salut mes tendres chouchous,
Wednesday evening a group of us interns as well as Jamie, Jamie’s FIANCÉE Helen along with Jamie’s brother and his girlfriend got together for some real Guangdong gastronomy in Gongbei, the area of Zhuhai that borders the mythical SAR of Macau.
After some good food and 啤酒 (beer – TSINGDAO) we made the short trek over to the UNDERGROUND GO KART PARADISE. During our pilgrimage over the go kart paradise, I was fortunate enough to have been offered the chance to partake in the economy of the world’s oldest profession. Needless to say, I declined as the underground paradise of go karts was awaiting me!
The entrance to the go karting place was definitely sketchy; we had to walk down this hot, grimy corridor with some random businesses until we got into the go kart area. The waiting area/lounge was veritably kitschy in the best way possible. The plush sofas with some padding missing in prints ranging from a luxurious purple to a lavish cheetah print definitely set the mood. The plastic vines and leaves overhead reminded me of the time that I lived in the Amazon with the Pirahã people….NOSTALGIA.
The go kart course was amazing. It was a converted underground car park with these little go karts RIPPING through the course. Before getting onto the course and watching others drive, we all said that we probably wouldn’t be going THAT fast. After the first lap, however, we found ourselves in an ecstasy of speed-driven adrenaline pumping through our blood streams. After the first round, we were all smiles and giggling, recounting our crashes and victory moments, i.e. when we overtook Jamie 😉
A good time was had by all.
Ello ello everyone,
I went to a certain “Crocodile park” with my host family on Saturday. It was definitely interesting, although the novelty admittedly wore off after about an hour. There were monkeys, pigs and crocodiles. Quite the combination.
Afterwards, they took me to the periphery of Zhuhai and we visited a traditional Guangdong village along with a war memorial commemorating the British defeat at Zhuhai. Mind you, the Brits did end up with the Pearl of the Orient, i.e. Hong Kong.
Overall it was a very nice Saturday. The mountain was so peaceful and had wonderful fresh air. It is actually a nature reserve so any development is not allowed in the area. It was a nice departure from the hustle and bustle of the city! And peculiarly enough, on top of this mountain, I had Hong Kong cell phone service…rather strange!
Can’t wait to fill you all in on my MACAO adventures next weekend! 🙂
So last night an admittedly small group (everyone who skipped out on this one: we definitely had a better time than you did last night!) of Zhuhai interns did a taekwondo class. For those of you who are unfamiliar with TKD, it is a martial art from Korea and is the national sport (and obsession) in South Korea. While it does seem a bit strange to have taken a class here in Zhuhai, my host family informs me that TKD is extremely popular in China, especially here in Zhuhai, with multiple academies established here.
The class was intense; we were all sweating like pigs within the first 15 minutes of warm-ups in the SE China heat. We had one teacher who was originally from Guangzhou, about 1.5-2 hours north of Zhuhai, and his student – both of them were impressive in their physical capabilities as well as their patience with dealing with a group of 外国人 (foreigners) whose Chinese is far from fluency.
Hopefully we’ll get a chance to do it a few more times before summer’s end!
my name is Isabel and I’m the new intern in Zhuhai. Surrounded by some very nice polite guys (I’m the only girl in the office…:-)) , I preferred to have a real tough trip to Zhongshan the last weekend, to get a change from daily office life. No, I’m joking…;-) Because I’m leaving Zhuhai under 2 weeks, I just wanted to collect some more impressions of China. You are probably asking yourselves, where Zhongshan is located and why go to that city. Zhongshan is only 70 minutes far from Zhuhai and I’ve heard a lot about this beautiful city before. (On the detail of the map you can have a look)
As it happens, I met accidentally Jamie and his girlfriend Helen at the bus station in Gongbei. They just stood behind me in the line for buying the bus tickets and because of killing two birds with one stone, we decided to go together to Zhongshan. When we arrived, we were all a little bit disorientated and not really sure what the ‘must see’ sights were. But fortunately Helen had a map of Zhongshan and so we started to walk around with the aim to get to a nice park. After we walked through a pretty pedestrian street with some old houses (ore maybe they just have an antique look and are not really old) we started to get lost. We finally arrived to the park but in the end we discovered that this park wasn’t the right one. We were a little bit confused but after a while, we found the park in which we actually wanted to go.
On the top of the park is a tower and if you want to reach it, you can easily get the impression you have to climb a mountain. 🙂 Because of the immense effort we had a lot of appetite and we decided to find a good restaurant where we can also have beer. We didn’t know that this would be our next challenge. (If you ever have in mind to go to Zhongshan and to have a good meal there, ask Jamie before) After we meandered, we found in the end a real good restaurant and we had a lot of delicious dishes.
I can absolutely recommend Zhongshan for a one day trip and if you go there have fun! 🙂