Yeah, sorry. Been meaning to write. Busy though, you know. End of term, reports, had another son, that sort of thing. What shall we call this one? Verb? He is quite active. I think he can be Rat, actually. He doesn’t look like one, but it’s almost short for his name, and a good friend wanted that to be his nickname. It isn’t, because Jesus, you wouldn’t do that to a child. I wouldn’t call him louse or bacterium either, however well it fitted with his given name.
Where had I got to? China, right? OK, so the winters were unbelievably, and I mean unbelievably, cold. On my birthday this year I’d arranged a babysitter so Sarah and I could go out. We were going to go to Gou Lo, or Houhai, or one of the hip BJ suburbs that you couldn’t possibly have heard of. Bing Pong. There, that do you? Anyway, the plan was to get the tube there and then basically go bar-hopping. It was minus 15. We went outside. We looked each other. We went back inside.That kind of cold is physically painful. The best example I can give you of the cold is the ice slugs. The building opposite my flat in BJ was the school sports hall, which was four stories high. The air would condense inside, drip from the edges of the roof and hit the floor, but before it hit the floor it would begin to freeze – it wouldn’t be solid,but it would have reached a sort of gel state that meant that whilst it wouldn’t spread, it also wouldn’t pile up. What you got was a sort of weird slug shaped thing of solid layered ice. Here’s a photo of it, with a small boy for scale. This is noun, not rat. But a year ago. Rat now wears the coat that Noun wears here, or would, if we lived in a place that ever needed a coat. More about which later
The cold, and whole load of other reasons, meant that we left. There’s a bit of “reader, I moved countries and geographic zones” here, but you’ll just have to live with that. I’m in Brunei now. They recently banned Christmas. No, for real. Look it up. It’s also dry, though I am drunk as I type, so not that effectively. Obviously I’ll have lots of things to talk about – my house backs on to actual jungle, for a start – so I’ll try to update more often.
I’m back, basically. See you soon.