Friday 29th July
Who knows how the footy match turned out, because it was way too boring and much too noisy for our liking. And besides, there are more important-and very interesting-things to talk about today.
It all started out like a normal day. Bleary eyed in the mornings, an annoying droning voice that can only be LOH’s in the background like a sort of less fuzzy bumblebee, with the temperament of a hornet, followed by traffic on the roads. TV on, even though no one’s watching apart from to steal the occasional glance.
But the evening was where it all started, at the football stadium, near the hotspots for many foreign expats. You noticed a sizeable amount of foreigners riding on bikes across the streets.
We collected our tickets before stopping to have a quick ‘dinner’-aka extremely pricey ices and lattes, along with delicious but small samples of cakes-including a Black Forest cake and a sort of crepe layered cake that was very filling-that were the same price as an entire spaghetti from Pizza Hut. Ouchies.
Black forest cake-mmm…
The football match took place in the Workers’ Stadium, which was built before the 60’s and so, as you can imagine, is veritably old. It was between Guo An, a Beijing team, which was green, and some team from Hang Zhou, which just also happened to be green. Made it a very confusing stadium, as I didn’t have a damned clue who was on who’s side. Not like I cared anyway; neither deserved to win. I’m pretty sure I could play it better on FIFA. There were so many fake injuries, balls flying into the air and so many failed attempts at a goal which is blatantly empty it makes you want to hurl insults and curses at the players. Which is exactly what everyone did, of course.
It is not a nice atmosphere. No-it’s terrible, almost horrifying. The consequences of a crowd crush are very obvious, and there’s always this terrifying feeling that, if someone scores, the audience will simply start a civil war with themselves. Indeed, when they all started screaming ‘Sha Bi’-the equivalent of the s-word-as if it were perfectly all right to swear at their own team players. Someone decided giving little kids massive horns was a great idea, so that they could blow everyone in their vicinity’s ears off. The drinks everyone sell are pricey and specifically designed to easily break, causing the liquid to flow down the steps and annoy everyone else below you who was already hot and stuffy and now has to suffer with sticky steps too. Making everyone’s day a dream I see.
With no obvious end in sight and with ten or of minutes to go, after saying goodbye to a couple of expat friends we met, who had also left (they thought LOH was over eighteen-she has had someone take a selfie with her because she was foreign, someone on a motorbike call out ‘I love you!’ and, worst of all, some hapless chap who probably thought he was ever so clever when he went ‘hello, can I have you?’ Oh Lord, maybe I shouldn’t grow any taller.) we ran off before the crowd crush of the tubes began as the massive crowd made its exodus outwards.
As we walked home at night, LOH decided, at the last road, to sprint across it. No, she didn’t get run over if you think that’s what I’m leading up to. But, as she kept running through the night, she didn’t notice the semicircular hole on the already tiny pathway, given for the sewage drain. She hit it with both her feet, nearly taking off her entire big toe’s nail and severely damaging the other one. Funny thing is, it was bound to happen. It was just when. And you know, at least she didn’t get run over. That would have probably been a bit worse.
Take two and call me in the morning! (Kudos if you get the reference)
Next up: hospital trips for the broken Sophia, general despondency. Reading whilst despondent.
Update: So that was the last part of my trip with the derpy spork ie Sophia, as much as I like to mess around saying she’s useless it was a great time we had together and hopefully in the future we can do something like this again! Next up: Scotland! (Unless you guys want some random reviews from TripAdvisor???)