February 24th: Going, going…

One man can only leave so many times…

Mr John Burgess, advocate of Guinness and of pool bars everywhere in Shanghai, will shortly be gone, leaving behind him a weeping trail of trading department ladies (and men).  And leaving following the highest number of leaving dos of anyone I’ve ever met.

Bron sings "Superstar"... again...

Bron sings “Superstar”… again…

Wednesday night featured JB leaving do number 87, back in Masse (favourite bar in Shanghai) for a last Wednesday night drubbing at pool (with me the recipient).  On Friday we ventured into a KTV bar for another leaving do with most of the trading team and a few others, featuring such quality karaoke songs as Lionel Richie’s “Hello”.  And, of course, “Pretty Boy”.  The night ended in a small bar called the Wooden Box where Bron and I met Rachel around 1am (after French folk band people had finally given up with their extended Corsa advert).

Rob, Tim, me, Bron and Sarah saying another goodbye to JB

Rob, Tim, me, Bron and Sarah saying another goodbye to JB

Saturday night’s leaving do was in Mr Willis, a fairly posh restaurant (for me, that is, since I ended up wearing a shirt), also joined by the Bradfords and Jo.   This following JB’s last ever trip to Masse for an afternoon of pool and goodbyes to the staff there (in a Cheers sort of way, we can now enter the bar and have a pint poured without asking for it).

Tonight (Sunday) we’re going back out with most of the Argos UK team to say goodbye to both Richard and JB, since Richard also leaves China for good in a couple of weeks.  This is probably (hopefully) JB’s last leaving do, but he doesn’t fly until about 1pm tomorrow so there’s always time.

Today is “Chinese Lantern Day”, marking the end of the Chinese New Year festival (the 15th day of the first lunar month of the Chinese year).  Fireworks are currently going off everywhere – hopefully we’ll see some and not be hit by any on the way to the restaurant.

Chong – sorry to do this to you, but this was one of my favourite text conversations from the last few months (from Friday):

  • “Do you and Bronwen fancy playing badminton on Sunday morning?”
  • “Possibly, but we’re not very fit”
  • “Neither are we so it should be OK”

Shortly followed by:

  • “Do you and Bronwen have bats?”
  • “Good point – no we don’t”
  • “Neither do we.  Should we just go for brunch instead”.

So we met Chong and Isaac for brunch instead early this morning – far better.

Meanwhile, “The band” (we don’t have a name yet) has now reached four members, following the introduction of a bass player and the second visit from a drummer.  8 songs nearly complete, and a couple more on the way…  3 hours of playing guitar this afternoon means my hands are pretty well destroyed but I could get used to this.

So John’s gone… Richard’s gone… Maybe another update on the blog tomorrow…

JB says goodbye to Masse,,,

JB says goodbye to Masse,,,

A tram, in Shanghai.  Not really.

A tram, in Shanghai. Not really.