When Richard turned up, he looked surprised to see me. ‘What are you doing here?‘ he asked. ‘Arthur told me to come,’ I said. ‘Arthur told me that you had told him what time I was to be here.’ I wasn’t expected to be there until Sunday apparently, things get lost in translation, or just not mentioned at all.
We were given a quick tour around the college, it was MASSIVE, from the front gate to my classroom block was a fifteen-minute walk.
Arthur is a LOUD exhibitionist that camouflages deep insecurities – he will say this himself, so I’m not doing him a disservice in describing him like that.
Tim and Suzy (notice teacher in bed behind Tim)
I had met Tim and Suzy, an American couple, in the grounds of my apartment, as I was coming or going one day. They were new like me, and fortunately were going to be working at the same college as I was. They were a bit younger than me; Tim had been a successful builder in Florida until the great American crash had wiped him, and his business out.
“Nanjing is a very pleasant city, despite being known as one of the three huolu, or furnaces, of central China, on account of its hundred-degree summers. Located mostly on the south bank of the Yangtze River, it has a population of more than 6 million people.” China Road: One Man’s Journey into the Heart of Modern China by Rob Gifford
“The name Nanjing (formerly spelt Nanking) means nothing fancier than ‘Southern Capital’. (Beijing means ‘Northern Capital. Tokyo is called Dongjing, which means ‘Eastern Capital’. There is no Western Capital). The city rests on layer upon layer of Chinese history.” 1421: The Year China Discovered the World by Gavin Menzies.
Escaping the tedium of the office, and salary and the nine to five slog
I have had Darling Daughter stay with me every other weekend practically since she was born. Like most dad’s I really wanted to be a twenty-four – seven, three hundred and sixty five days a year dad, but that wasn’t to be. I have tried to be the best dad I could be. I love my Darling Daughter, but I too have a life.
The goodbyes were swift and painful, tears were spilt, but it was best they got in their car and just went – I had a plane to catch.