Last night in Beijing!

Jess (not her real name) identity will remain private for the personal albums

It started with an innocent dinner with Jess at this fabulous restaurant called Dali.

Dali, a modern chinese restaurant with a hint of thai fusion (spice wise), is hidden in the back streets of the hutongs and was hands down the best food I’ve ever had in Beijing. If it wasn’t for Jess, a friend of a friend who is a Beijing local (and an exceptionally wonderful lady), I would have never experience the delicate explosion of tastes that each serving camouflaged through its simple and clean appearance. It was like a colourful fireworks display in my mouth – definitely a happy seat wiggle moment.

After dinner we hit Kokomo, a rooftop bar in Sunlitan which caters to the expat community, and 6 Mohitos later we’re making plans for me to learn Mandarin and move to Beijing, or for Jess to move to Sydney, or go to Europe together. I was really enjoying talking to a Chinese national who is really proud of her country, agrees with the one party, and is passionate about what their government does for the people (which we don’t see a lot of overseas). It’s hard for an outsider to completely understand what it must have been like for China in the past 30 years since they open their doors, and even harder to understand what it would have been like through the cultural revolution the ten years prior. I’ve come to really appreciate the history, the culture, the values, and surprisingly the language, which in the beginning of my trip sounded harsh, like everyone was shouting at each other, and now I find it so fascinating.

We were joined by a young american boy, an expat working in Beijing as a professional football player, and an army of french men.

American over-tanned footballer, without introducing himself – so where do you girls live?

T – ‘I’m just passing through, Jess is from here’

American over-tanned footballer to Jess – Can I have your number? hands over mobile. (To T) I’d ask for yours too but you’re just passing through. (smooth)

Jess – ‘you’ve got the key lock on.’ (hands phone back)

Jess to the table but aimed at this cute french man‘bottoms up!’ then skulls her 10th mohito (we’ve also had about four beers in between)

T – this is going to turn ugly

15 minutes later, Jess throws up on the cute french mans knee. The bar staff, used to this kind of thing, comes out with a bucket of water and quickly washes away the evidence, this process of spewing and cleaning repeats 4 times.

T – ‘Honey, its time to go home’

Somehow, like a cat, I always find my way home, and this proves true even in a foreign country, blind drunk, at 6am in the morning.