Because I am the proud author of a blog- I find it mandatory to do an entry about the New Year. I must mention I am not referring to the Chinese New year, instead the one that occurs on December 31st, regardless of the fact I am posting this in March :/ A new year means taking control of your life, becoming the best you and not putting anything off another minute, right? I promise to include at least three resolutions in my entry about how I can live my life to the fullest in 2014- although I mainly want to talk about the really kick ass lunch we had on NYE.
Cody and I were up early, our friend Brendan told us he would be over at our place about 10am to pick us up and get on the road. If you know my boyfriend, you know that means he packed the night before, was up at seven and worked out all before I rustled in bed around nine. I shoved all my shit in a bag, classically over packed, and hustled to make a cup of coffee before getting in the van. 12:30 rolls around and Brendan and his wife, Vivian, show up. I can't remember why we thought they might be on time that day, nevertheless we were off to a bit of a late start. His van is Chinese made, looks like a short cab space craft and backfires every five miles or so. We packed seven people in, all our gear and started for a little beach town called Hou hai, about three quarters down the east coast of Hainan.
I am forever grateful for Brendan and his van, it is exceedingly nice to have a friend with wheels, but it is a death trap. I have visions of the van, full of long haired foreigners breaking down in front of a chain smoking, bijou drinking semi truck driver on the freeway. We wouldn't stand a chance. Resolution #1- I will only ride in Brendan's van when all other options have been exhausted.
When we got to Hou hai, we met with four more friends, and headed off to get some lunch. I had never been to the restaurant, but Vivian assured us it would be good. We parked the van in a gravel lot, gave the 'attendant' 10 RMB and walked down to the boat dock. Apparently the restaurant floats! We hopped on a boat after some negotiating that I had nothing to do with, and took off down the marina looking for the restaurant. After passing every restaurant in sight, the driver pointed the bow toward the open sea and cranked it full throttle. I took it pretty well, I decided there was nothing I could do about being taken away into the South China Sea by a pirate and his trusty boat pup, so I opened the bottle of wine I had in my purse. The mood on the boat turned, and the two mandarin speakers on the boat quickly started chatting with our pirate captain. Eventually they got the driver to turn around and bring us to what resembled a floating fish farm. We jumped off the boat and gabbed a big round table to begin our feast. Again, I had nothing to do with the ordering or negotiating of price, I don't think I would have been much help. Cody and Vivian picked out our lunch from the nets in the water and I was in charge of the champagne fountain. Resolution #2- I will always carry wine in my purse.
We ate crab congee, fried oysters and clams, steamed fish and prawns that were literally the size of my head. It was an exceptional way to ring in the new year and leads me to my final resolution- I will stop complaining about the food in China, positive vibes make for positive feasts.
Embrace the Chaos