Trashy in China.2, Day 5

After a long and final day of the week’s meetings, the bunch of us were yearning for some relaxation.

My main presentation went well and despite a couple of hiccups and surprises, I think the final formal meetings on Monday will be a success. What I am involved in amounts to international negotiations and as such progress is measured in small increments and very carefully. This is the third major international project I have been involved with and if there is one thing I have learned it’s that progress is still progress, even if it is at a glacial pace.

So back to the  need for some relaxation. After leaving the meeting, our most awesome bus driver greeted all of us with a can of Tsingtao beer – warm, yet deeply appreciated after a day inside four walls!

A favourite spot to chill after a hard day’s work is the bar in the hotel called Charlie’s. If it wasn’t for the cigarette smoke, the horrible music and the poor selection of beer, it wouldn’t be a bad place… um, yeah, we really should find a better place to have a pint…

But Charlie’s does have Happy Hour when beer is two for one! Woo-hoo!

After our smokey and warm beer, we wandered aimlessly into the early evening looking for a place to eat. After much indecision, we ambled to a booth in what would be the equivalent of a, um, Denny’s in Canada. Food was very cheap – as was the beer – but not very satisfying. Still, for a dozen or so dishes and a half dozen large beers for 339 Yuan (about $50), whaddya want? 8 bucks a pops for dinner ain’t bad.

Of course, we couldn’t leave it at that and go back to the hotel, now could we? Nooooo… we had to do some exploring around a part of the city that was not really that far from the hotel but was on the OTHER SIDE OF THE STREET – a side that we were utterly unfamiliar with!

Hilarity ensued when we wandered unmolested by guards into a gated community. One that didn’t have an unlocked gate other than the one we used to enter. So after much more aimless wandering (though we did find a very bizarre 7-11), we did make our way past a bathhouse back to the hotel. And the good night sleep that I had will not go wasted as the group of us are meeting in 15 minutes to decide where in fact we will aimlessly wander this morning.

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