the grudge

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…of course the radiator didn’t work. The coldest night so far. Arctic.

I woke up with a grudge and couldn’t get rid of it for the rest of the day.

Shanxi mountain road

The scenery wasn’t bad…

caves in Shanxi

…but I somehow didn’t seem to be able to find the right angles. Maybe it was because I hadn’t had a good night’s sleep in some days.

On the road, some of the trucks annoyed me so much I was actually kind of happy for a moment as I noticed this:

dead truck

Yes, I thought, there you go with your reckless driving and your inconsiderate abuse of the horn!

Then I noticed a character next to the street:

Li

This li 力 is most easily translated as strength. That’s what I was missing today.

I had a grudge, but no strength.

Then I noticed someone REALLY miserable:

guy with mantou

This poor fellah was just kind of staggering along the highway, chewing on a mantou 馒头, staring into the empty space. He couldn’t be talked to. Now I’m no expert but I don’t think this guy was necessarily mentally unfit. But I do think he was having a hard time.

That’s the greatest unfairness of them all: Some people are that unfortunate they even lack the opportunity to be angry.

– No strength to bear a grudge –

I decided to re-evaluate my situation and get my act together:

Shanxi road

Taking this picture cheered me up a bit somehow, and before I knew it I had walked off the day’s march and was there:

phone numbers

This is not my hotel, but I liked the banner and the phone numbers on the wall.

Now you know you’re in some kind of a major settlement when there are pedestrian bridges arching over the streets:

bridge in Pingding

Nice feeling, because big city meant big hotel meant big radiator and very possibly meant a night spent cozy and warm.

…but then the grudge came back:

I’m sitting in this small restaurant having double cooked pork slices 回锅肉, when some guy turns around and snarls at me in his most bad-ass dialect:

guy: “Whatchu comm e fo?”

me: “What I came here for? I’m traveling through here!”

guy: “Travln, eh? Spenn lotsa mone?”

me: “What? No, I’m trying not to spend too much actually.”

guy: Llika hunndrd aday?”

me: “You want to know whether or not I’m spending 100rmb a day?”

guy: “En.”

– and that’s where the grudge comes in –

me: (raised voice) “Now what kind of a matter to talk about is that, huh??”

guy: looks lost.

I feel bad for him, but the damage is done.

Some friendly dudes helped out though and explained that in my country asking about money would be considered impolite. I had a chat with them and then I said good night and went up to my room.

Later that night, I am going through today’s pictures, thinking, not every day is a day spent well, and I have just found out that the heating is not quite as efficient as I had thought, and the grudge is back with a vengeance – that’s when I get this message from the dudes from the restaurant:

“Hey, wanna go out? We’re going to do karaoke, the hookers are really cheap – 50”

Sing love songs with dirt-cheap prostitutes and a bad temper?

Tempting, really tempting.



  • Rubi

    in deinem support sein ehrt mich sehr. ich hoffe, ich werde dem gerecht.
    ich gucke gerade tagesschau. "neiddebatte" wegen managergehältern. geil!

    Reply

  • Marvin

    Be carefull with the cheap Hookers. It's difficult to walk with a bad itch or worse. And again be carefull!

    Reply

  • Christoph

    Rubi: Haha, soll das ne Anspielung sein, dass du auch ein Managergehalt willst?
    Marvin: Always careful – holding out for the real expensive kind! 😉

    Reply

  • Anand-Gua

    Crazy man is my research center,haha.
    I am going to atend a meeting in Shenzhen tomorrow.The meeting will last five days.I can meet the son and grandson of the famousest writer Luxun in Chinese modern literature,.Do you konw LuXun?The meeting is about the research of him.I think I can't read you blog next five years!
    I hope you are able to enjoy yourself in the rest days!

    Reply

  • leena

    Chinese always ask these questions. "how old are you?"or "how much did you spent?".we don't know it's unpolite in your country.

    Reply

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