Friday, June 23, 2006

Fricken Hell

I finish work at around 4:00am most nights. On this night we had consumed some alcohol. Lyndon and I find ourselves at the noodle place downstairs after escaping a trip to the spa with the rest of the guys. (We were way too tired). I reach into my pocket and realise that its missing a WALLET! F*$#%. So my heart rate is pushing 2000 beats per minute while I am frantically looking around on the floor for any signs. Nothing! I start up the street towards where we got off from the cab. Nothing. I was sure i'd left it in the cab. There are a million cabs in Shanghai, I couldn't remember a single detail about it. You are supposed to get a receipt from the driver when you pay, of course I didn't have that.
So after dicking around and stopping random people, well Lyndon did anyway, I gave up hope. (One of those random people was this chick who offered to give me her food!) Several phone calls later I'd canceled my credit cards. I made a trip to the police station a day later and reported it lost. Try doing that in chinese!
Anyway just yesterday, I get a call from Jane (one of the real estate agents we were using) saying that she had my wallet! It was nuts. The money was gone... of course, but my mutual community card, drivers licence and several other cards were still there. I'd already canceled my credit cards but they were still about.
Lesson to be learnt here, put your address and details in your wallet so they can contact you!

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Wynn or Lose

So I've started work as a DJ in Shanghai. New club called WynnWin. I'll leave the name alone shall I. The club is in the shopping centre Plaza 66, real top end stuff. LV, Armani, Boss, blah blah blah. The club is PLUSH. All white, and massive sound system (although technically there are problems with it). Thursday night opening night. 8th of June. HUGE crowd. They sold out of all stock spirits. (And drinks are real expensive, over 100 AUD for a bottle of Vodka.) All tables were booked. In China, you book tables, and each table has a fee or a minimum spend tab. I'm not sure what it is but if you want a table start saving your pennies.
The owner likes Progressive house. Thats fine. But I'm not sure he knows what progressive house IS! So, apparently he has hated all the DJs that have played so far. not sure what he thinks about me, but I don't really care. I found out last night that I can make the same amount of money I make in a month but doing a few nights work for a DJ agency. Thats an eighth of the work for the same money. Wynn or Lose? Lose the residency at Shanghai's most exclusive, Wynn much better pay for less work? Leaning toward the money....:)
More photos if you click on one of the photo links on the right. unfinished and finished versions.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Cornfields and Soybeans

Most people think of Chicago when they hear Illinois. But theres more! Travel south of Chicago and you get miles and miles of cornfields and soybeans. And I mean MILES of it. Theres the occasional town or two in between, but by and large its farm land. But its the richest farm land around. I swear.

Illinois in 10
1. Abraham Lincoln's birthplace
2. Krispy Kreme factory that supplies everything besides the east coast of the States
3. Birthplace of the Rotary International Foundation
4. Everyone south of Chicago either lives on a golf course, has a lake, lives on a farm or has a combination of the 3.
5. Oprah is shot in Chicago.
6. Cornfields and Soybeans.
7. People are really friendly. Really, they are.
8. Did I mention Krispy Kreme? Everything in the factory is automated. They had SHELVES AND SHELVES of mix. All I needed was 1 bag. Each bag was, I think 15 kilos, maybe 20 and made 1000 fluffly wholesome rings of delights.
9. The great Quincy Jones was born in Chicago. Cindy Crawford in DeKalb. Walt Disney in Chicago too.
10. FLAT. Its flat for kilometres. Far as the eye can see, central Illinois is completely flat. FLAT!

The whole point of me going to Illinois was for Rotary International Exchange. A vocational experience whereby you get to expereince your vocation in another country. So I visited software firms, business development companies as well as some of the other people's vocations. There was also alot of Rotary Meetings. It was like Groundhog day the movie cos every meeting you hand to reintroduce yourself. I got my photo into 2 newspapers and went to 1 television interview.
We did get to visit things like museums, went to see a baseball game and I even went fishing. All and all it was a good experience. One thing to be noted people eat REAL unhealthy there. Salad was equal parts salad dressing and vegetables.

You may have seen the photo of Chi-Hoong and I. That was in a MAC store on Michigan avenue. I managed to catch up with him and Su-Yin. Here is us eating at Mike Ditka's grill restaurant. Really nice steaks. (No thats not a handbag.)

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Right in the thick of it!


Well, we've moved. Hopefully never again, well at least for a while. Try ringing for a moving van when you don't know how to say the address of where you are going, or how to say moving van? I managed to get the door guy at our old apartment to help me out and call one. We somehow had HEAPS of stuff. (Adelaidians use 'HEAPS'....ahhh.. heaps.) I would have taken a picture but the camera was packed in somewhere. The whole move was a stealth operation, it didn't have a name then but I'm calling it 'Shanghai suprise'. You see our landlord was showing people around our apartment while I was in the states. Lyndon didn't know what was going on and so apparently quite a few people came walking through. Quite concerning. We suspected that they were going to sell...great! I mean that in a good way cos we wanted to move and if we did, we would break our contract! Well we ended up finding this place in 3 days, and we shipped all our stuff out on a Sunday. The landlord was coming on Monday to collect more rent. :) Come monday, SUPRISE!!!! Bad as it sounds no one was upset about any of it. They were quite ok about it in the end.
So now we are right in the thick of it. Next to a Metro line, walking distance from clubs, restaurants and shopping. Conveniant.

The picture is the view from my room window. The arrow is pointing at a road. Just off to the left is one of Shanghai's main roads. Nan Jing Road.