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Back to Hangzhou

Up early and rolling again. Down to the breakfast buffet that's remarkably similar in all the hotels I've stayed in while in China. They always offer both western style and Chinese style foods. Aiyun rates this one as the best we've had for breakfast due to the variety and quality. Here's a super quick tour of what's on the menu.

I got a note from Steve this morning asking me about two things that our friend Alicia remembered from her trip to China. (1) spitting and (2) rude men. I can confirm both. Men often make this gross noise bringing stuff from down deep before they spit on the ground. It's way more common than what's comfortable. And the rude men? Absolutely. Mysogony runs super deep here. We had an "incident" occur this week that I was reluctant to write about, but I'll throw it out now.

On Wednesday we had just arrived at the Dujiangyan train station. We were walking to the taxi pickup area so we could go check out the blue tears waterway and bridges. Aiyun stops at a restroom and I'm waiting outside for her. I see a young girl facing a wall. Face in her hands. She was bawling. A young man is standing behind her. Then it happened. He smacks her hard on the back of the head. Twice. It wasn't gentle. Dad instincts kick in and I make a beeline directly towards the dude. Maybe in his mid twenties. No idea if he speaks English. I made a fist and put it on my own jaw and said loudly to him "If you want to hit someone hit me. Don't hit a girl!" There were people around. I was making a scene. I was pointing to my own chest offering him a fair fight. He fully understood me and replied "She's my girlfriend". His English was fine. I was mad. It was ugly. I was ready to throw down. He backed off. I'm certain I was easily twice his size. The young girl never looked at me. I asked if she was okay and she didn't say a word. I've had some anger issues in the past. After a few tense moments I realized I needed to de-escalate the situation. I wasn't helping anyone. Then I thought of Aiyun. How was this going to make her feel. Dang. She came out of the bathroom. I told the young man never hit a girl again, or something like that. I can't remember exactly what I said. Escalated emotions have a way of getting in the way of what exactly was said.

We walked to the taxi area and talked about what had happened. I've thought about it a lot. What could I have said to help the situation, not make it worse? What's the result everyone wants? Maybe a question for the kid. Do you want her love or her obedience? Perhaps a no win situation for all involved. I'm glad I didn't hit the kid and get arrested. Aiyun confirmed that was the most likely outcome as a foreigner in China. I did notice the couple waiting for a taxi as we got in our own. They were both staring at their shoes. Alicia said men in China are rude. I can't argue that. Many I've witnessed have been openly rude, obnoxious, entitled, etc. But let's not make too many broad generalizations. They ain't all bad. Perhaps enough of them that when I do see a gentlemen being openly kind it's noticeable. I couldn't help but notice a Chinese man yesterday gesturing to allow a group of ladies to go before him getting on an escalator in a crazy packed situation.

Marginalized men. It's a concept introduced to me recently by my friend Tony Cohen here in Hangzhou. Men worldwide are giving up power they've assumed they were entitled to. They are being marginalized by women and minorities. Some are handling it better than others. If you're interested in reading more about this topic Tony would be pleased to see me offering you this LINK.

Got to the airport. We're east bound and down. Loaded up and truckin. How about that line Durk? Need a Hint? Not a movie line, but from a song. Anywho, through the airport smoothly with only a few incidents of people pushing ahead in lines. It's just not something we see in the states. It's common place in crowded areas here. I'm sure it's just because of the mad volume of bodies. They have four times the population and the same land area. Aiyun will be heading directly back to Wuxi today. We have a plan to meet up in two weeks and take her mom out for something fun. Not sure yet. I suggested a movie. Maybe just a walk in a park and a meal. We'll see.

Ended up playing screen golf immediately after I got home. Had something sort of surreal happen. I was given this box of golf balls as a gift for my accomplishment.

I have to admit it felt cheesy because it was screen golf. An 8-iron from 158 yards with a slight head wind. My buddy Ian was way more excited than I was. He did a lap around the joint high-fiving everyone. I didn’t score well. Hit the driver better, but today the accuracy with the irons disappeared. Screen golf putting and shirt game in general is way tougher when you can’t tell just how far the Lin is away from you. Feels like total guess work at times. Still had fun and it was nice to grab my first ever ace. Still though, screen golf?

Got my mom on the phone this morning for a quick chat. She says she happy in her new home, but she was fairly confused about everything. I asked about her new fella, David. She couldn’t remember him. That was hard to take. I believe he’s gone for this weekend. Out of sight for a day and out of mind I guess.

Return to the grind of work tomorrow. I’ve sort of fallen into an every other weekend routine. One weekend with Aiyun. The next weekend of poker and playing a round of golf. A good one-two combination for me.

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