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Happy birthday Paul!

My friend Paul is having a birthday soirée tonight at Angelo's. It's a an expat bar and restaurant near the old HIS campus that lots of teachers here frequent.

That's Paul on the far left with some of his colleagues in the Chinese language department. We had quite a crowd at the event. Well over fifty people were there from school.

I didn't drink too much (five total), but made the mistake of not eating. Sometimes I forget to do that. The restaurant has a biker theme to it. There's a riding club called Dragon Riders that call this Italian New York style pizza joint their home. They all ride Harleys. Odd thing. No older bikes exist here in China. They had a hard and strict rule that no bikes on the road could be older than 12 years old. My buddy Jeremy told me that rule was taken off the books just last month. He's expecting some classic Harleys to make their way back to mainland China soon. Currently lots of V-rods and similar styles. Sorry, Calvin, I should have taken a picture of the ceiling that had lighted images of all their bikes.

I ended up talking with tons of random teachers and friends all night. I learned quite a bit about Wales talking to Dr. Ryan (counselor). He's on the far right of that last picture. Interesting dynamic they have with the British. They all hate Margret Thatcher with a passion. We found some common history as Ryan comes from a coal mining area like me. Wales isn't their own sovereign nation, but it's weird how they would prefer to be while simultaneously knowing it's not realistic for them from an economic standpoint. Ryan and his wife Dee are taking their kids to the states next summer for a tour of the east coast starting at Disney Wotld and heading north to Washington DC and New York. He was very interested in hearing about where to stop and be a tourist. In particular he wants to see the "old" south. I suggested Savanah and Charleston as they make their way north.

Headed to the driving range to hit some golf balls before I host another poker night tonight. Going to be a full table with potential players waiting for an open seat. Three of the ladies that played last week at my special ladies' night event are signed up to play tonight. I consider that a success.

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Mike Durkee
Mike Durkee
01 Μαρ 2023

Why the passionate dislike of Thatcher? I know I'm showing my ignorance... but just curious... I don't pay a lot of attention to other countries political climate, views, etc. Can hardly stand putting up the the States s*** show.

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