3 Cities in 3 Nights

Things go by so quickly.  And I have more than enough free time, but I waste it doing god-knows-what.  So let me try to summarize some things before it gets too late.

– Class:  It’s going well.  Students aren’t as engaged as last year hopefully that will change soon.  I see my students for 4x as much time as I did last year.  Well, my International Dept. kids.  My English department kids I begin teaching this week.  I saw class 1001 today.  41 girls and 4 boys.  Ha!  They were more interested in English than my international dept. kids, but hey…it IS their major.

– Lifting: What seemed like it was going to become a solid part of my routine is quickly fading away.  I went to lift one day last week, got there, decided I was too tired.  Did one exercise.  And left.  The trainers all looked at my in surprise as I just shook my head and walked out the door.  My next attempt to lift after that came the day I decided to run there…in 410 degree weather and 8000 percent humidity.  It was only a 31 minute run, but I’m pretty sure I almost had a heart attack.

Traveling:  I’m always traveling…even if it’s just to the grocery store.  Everything is a trip.  And well, I seem to spend more time on buses than anywhere else.   Last weekend for instance:

– Thursday – to Xiangtan – Zak’s town – It was his friend, Cory’s, birthday.  We went to a Brazilian BBQ (unlimited food and beer for an equivalent of 8 USD.  Well worth the price.  Then we went and played laser tag.  My team lost, of course.  I pretended I didn’t care.  Next we went to the arcade.  Nicole, Zak’s friend, and I pretended we were going to steal a whole load of tickets that seemed unaccounted for.  The girl saw us and quickly rushed over.  We were just joking…God..  Nicole then won, but it was far fewer than it would have been had that other overly defensive girl had not just beat her to it.  Nicole one a mini-puzzle.  It was super lame.  Lastly, we went to Rock Bar.  It’s quite awesome.  I had my mini-speaker and we were able to play our own music outside.  Oh, and this Chinese guy, Long, who is friends with Zak had previously been in the army and he told us that he had killed a man once.  Here is his pic:

Long 1 - he was NOT happy with this pic

Long - Take 2 - he was more satisfied with the tougher-looking pic

Friday – After getting food, we realized it was some Jewish holiday.  Zak, being a good Jew, realized that he had to fast.  And so, I decided that Xiangtan was not the place for me.  I left.  Back in Changsha, I met up with the American crew to eat dinner and hit the town.  Somehow it took me longer to get to a different location in the same city than it did to reach Zak in Xiangtan.  True story.

After dinner, we went to some place where a band was playing.   25 Yuan seemed a bit pricey to have our ears blown out so a few of us went to a beer garden and got some drinks.  There was a table of shirtless boys who were clearly 14 years old pounding beers next to us.  Of course, I went over to cheers with them.  After that, we went downtown.  Milky?  Yes.  If you don’t know what Milky is, well, you are missing out.  It is one of the newer clubs in downtown Changsha near Daylight Donuts.

“Where is the stage?”  I asked Michaela.  I couldn’t find it.

“Right there…”  She pointed through a crowd of people towards the DJ booth.  The stage was directly in front of the DJ.  To the stage we went.  After maybe 10 songs, we got down.  But at that point, Team America had taken over the stage.  I left the bar around 1:00 AM seeing as only one out of every four songs seemed to be up to standard.

Saturday –  I had discovered the night before, that everyone else in Changsha had class on Sunday.  No one would be going out Saturday night.  And word on the street was that Mr. Wan (my bff from Zhangjiajie) was in Cili for his birthday.  So what would I do?  Yes, I left for Cili at 7:45 AM.  I wasted money on a taxi, and had to wait an hour for the next bus.  I arrived in Cili around 12:30.  I tried to get the bus schedule from the people at the window in Cili, and it seemed like success.  they gave me a card with times.  Unfortunately, that card is just a suggestion.  Cili people can change their minds about everything.  So the next day, I still showed up an hour before the next bus.  Thanks.

Chelsea and I went to Qing Ya Ju for lunch, and Color Wolf, Zou Qi, and Kevin Table joined us.  Linda came late.

“Drunk after lunch, again,” said Chelsea.  Except, this time it was brought on by ourselves.

After this, we made a college and framed it for Mr. Wan’s birthday.  When I say “we” I basically mean: they.  I contributed by having money, being in some photos, knowing where we could buy a frame, and having knowledge of where photo shops are.

Dinner was with Huang Xing Guo (typically) and other guys who I had seen before but could never remember their names.  I now know “hairy chest man” to be Mr. Ye.  So that’s good.  Richard (my old liaison) and Dyllis (English Teacher) were there, also.  Dinner became Drinker very quickly.  My favorite picture of the night came at the end of dinner.  It was a dedication to Jon (my site-mate last year) pic.  Check it out:

As you may notice...this dedication to Jon has something to do with smoking...

So yeah..  Jon was known as the smoker out of the two of us.  So we took this picture in honor of him. While this is a great picture, I really like this next one a lot to:

Remember that Man Love I wrote about before...yeah...

Do you want to go to KTV (private karaoke rooms)?  The man who was hugging me asked.  Richard pretended that he didn’t.  I probably said that I did because we ended up there.  Rocking out the same tunes as always, we spent about 3 hours there.  I typically wandered to a different room, performed “I Want it That Way”, chugged a full beer with someone, and then ended the night in our room where I berated all of the Chinese people for scoring a 1 on the performance scale.  Yes, they have better voices than us.  But, all they do is sit there.  Get up and move!  How did Steve and I win Gettysburg Idol?  It certainly wasn’t because of our voices.  So yeah.  Oh, and some people threw up.  I won’t name names.  But I will say that it was not me…

Oh and if you didn’t know, Chinese people can sleep anywhere….take a look at this picture and know that the music was too loud to have any conversation:

sleeping...why not?

The other guy saw how fun it looked and decided to join him...

(While these guys were sleeping…this is what the rest of us were doing:)

I get really, really into KTV

Li Hong, Neil, Justin belts it out

my new hat was popular. just ask this Aussie idol

Zou Qi really isn't nearly as good as he thinks. Jon was right.

I personally think Color Wolf is the best

Gotta love when KTV turns into Disco Party

So those were some KTV pics from two weekends ago…but now, back to the current weekend….

The girls went straight home after KTV, but I was hungry so I stopped at my street restaurant for some fried rice.  It was still only about midnight.  Well, this was the state I found Huang Xing Guo in:

HXG dead at the table....

Even the next day, Huang Xing Guo had no clue that I had been to the street restaurant the night before.  He was driving me to the bus station on his motorbike when I reached around his shoulder and showed the picture.  Instead of trying to glance at it while driving, he stopped in the middle of the road as if we were immune to being crushed from behind by a bus.  “Haha.  I was drunk,” was all he said.  He was not hungover at all.  Chinese people don’t seem to get hungover…well, Cili people don’t seem to get hungover…

I went home at 12:30.  Woke up the guards again.  Unfortunately for them, I still torture them at all hours of the night even though I now live a solid three hours away…


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