Because I'm too lazy to write an entry today
21.01.2013 - 21.01.2013
How appurtenant that on the day that I accidentally rip a hole in the silk pyjamas bought for me by a family Jiaxing I used to visit for free (but with little gifts and dinners bought for me)I should- out of the blue- get a text from Claire asking if I'd like to make friends with a Chinese family and stay with them for a few days, I must be lonely in my apartment etc. It's time for a new pair.
These overtures, wrapped in the guise of friendship, are made because families are keen to have private tuition for their child but cannot afford hourly fees.
I include our typos/mistakes for flavour.
Claire: would you like to visit a Chinese family? would u like to live in your apartment by you own or live in a family here for somedays?
James: Hello Claire. I am marking until Jan 25 and then I will go to Liaoning til Feb 5. I will be back Feb 7 but I have a friend who is staying in Bayan Nur who I will show around and discuss some business ideas with. Then on February 14 I will go to Beijing for 5 days to see a friend. So inbetween plans I have a bit of time but I would like to use that to plan next semester's lessons, do some reading and watch YouTube. :-) Thank you for thinking of me.
Claire: ok. would u like to pay a visit to a family with a junior student. their parents are longing to have you as their guest. it is ok if you just spend 1 day or half a day. they even wish to pay u.
James: How old is the student?
Claire: aroud 11. the family will prepare traditional Bayan Nur food for u.
James: I am a vegetarian. :-P
Claire: that is ok. I can tell them and just provide vegetarian fod.
James: Claire, I will do this FOR YOU, ok? Half a day and I'll need you or them to arrange transport from Jin Shan and back again. I don't want payment.
James: And I can't do this til some time in February.
(Note, there is now a much longer gap between messages, perhaps while Claire recovers from being annoyed by my pride and tempers hers).
Claire: so reluctant? sure we will manage the transportation.
(Then, straight after).
Claire: then we decided it! which day would u like or I arrange it?
James: Reluctant but professional. Don't worry, I am good with children. May I arrange with you when I return from Liaoning? I will only know the exact date of return when I have the train tickets and I cannot buy them now. As you know, with Spring Festival near that time it won't be easy. The other thing is, I will be seeing a friend in Hohhot and need to arrange the dates of their stay as well.
Claire: i owe u