Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Home, sweet home

Our troubled tub: pretty but problematic

There I was, thinking that this time my return to China was going to be smooth.

Exclusively enough, I enjoyed the privilege of being picked up from the airport by a company driver, since two important business people arrived on the same flight as me (normally I don’t get any pickup). “Wicked!” I thought (that saved me 400 kuai on a private car or the hassle of taking a train/ airport bus), until it was revealed that these 2 important business people had lost their luggage. So, to start things off, I had to spend 1,5 hours waiting at the arrivals at the airport, constantly being approached by strange drivers asking me if I was “Fanny/ Lisa/ Miss Frank/ Miss god-knows-who.”

Eventually we all gathered and could take the car back to Suzhou.

To say I was hungry when I came home is an understatement. Super sweet, artificial tasting cherry crepes as my latest airplane meal x hours ago had proved not to be that filling.

However, there were more important matters to be dealt with, such as:

* A freezing cold flat.

* A somewhat flooded bathroom.

* Angry neighbours complaining about one of our aircons making a noise, so loud that the woman (who’s pregnant – as they eagerly pointed out) downstairs cannot get her beauty sleep.

* A hysterical landlord calling me the minute I stepped inside (“Where have you BEEN?!” I just saw you step inside your building from my window!” –Stop spying on me, woman!) telling me that since our electricity bill from December has not been paid they will turn off our power on Jan 7 unless we take action.

….Ah, what better way to deal with it all but to simply pick up the phone, order in copious amounts of Chinese food (at a minimum charge), wait for it to arrive, eat, and THEN deal with everything?

Yeah, that’s just what I did. I don’t operate well on an empty stomach. Also, as usual, I've missed eating Chinese food.

Now the bill is paid, the bathroom is temporarily fixed, the noisy aircon has been turned off, the neighbours are happy, the flat is still freezing cold, and I have gotten my Chinese food-fix. Time to start house-hunting and dealing with new matters.


Bernard Liu said...

Hi Jonna,
Because my best friend here is swedish, i become interested in Sweden. One time I searched the news about sweden, then I ran into ur blog. I hv read most of the articles u posted. They are really awesome. It's a good way to observe my own country from a foreigner's point of view.
thanks for ur sharing and wish u everything went well in China!

Bernard Liu.

Pete In Syracuse said...

Oh boy I love house hunting. How much time do you have before your under a schedule again? Where are you planning to start looking? You were smart to get the food first before confronting the problems at hand so many of us just plow through the problems on an empty stomach wanting to have the meal as a reward when in fact if you don't fuel your tank you are worse in every situation you handle. Did you get you bags ok? I don't remember if you had said what the outcome of that was? Great to have you back!!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Joanna ... Wish you a very happy new year ... may God bless you with all you desire and more ..

All the best!

WoAi said...

That is so damn freaky that your landlord spies on you like that. And there's nothing worse than coming home after a very long tiring flight and car ride and then have to deal with all that. I always just want to hug Tommy, shower and jump in to bed.

So you can't use your aircon? Turn it off, that's the solution?

Anonymous said...

Hello Joanna,

I enjoyed reading your blog. I am in Brisbane, Australia and also speak Chinese. I like reading about all of your funny encounters! I have experienced some of these encounters when I have visited China. I also research Chinese leadership and I can relate to the cross-cultural oddities that sometimes arise. Anyway, I really just wanted to say that your blog is very interesting.


Jonna Wibelius said...

Bernad Liu -Hi, thanks for telling me that! Great to hear from someone who enjoys this blog AND who is interested in Sweden :) Go on reading and I'll continue sharing!

Pete -I HATE house hunting...! I guess it can be fun if u have a lot of time, but I don't.. I have to find something before Sat, so naaah, it's a pain!

As for the bags -my bag came out almost first this time, it was the other guys (the important biz people) that stood bag-less at the end of the day. Hence why I had to hang at the airport for an extra hour. I don't know how they went in the end, but I assume they got the bags.

Anonymous -same to you!

Woai -Exactly! I am the same. Unfortunately I don't have any Tommy to hug (my bf will have to do), but except for that it's all about eating, showering and sleeping... not fixing flooded bathrooms. Oh well. Moving soon! (Far away from the spying landlord!)

Peter -In Brisbane, huh? Wanna swap!? ;) I looooove Australia! Glad to hear u enjoy my blog, thanks for telling me!

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