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John and Dean's China adventure

On the way to Hong Kong

overcast 20 °C
View John and Dean's China adventure on JohnVosler's travel map.

It's been a while since I checked in and I've received a few e-mails reminding of this, so here is a little update. We are now back in Zhuhai after a trip to Hong Kong. The night before we left we did have a little excitement though. We had just finished doing Tai Chi and I wanted to show our instructor, Wong, the Machatz Self Defense studio web site. I wanted to show him the other techniques I was studying in the states. I tried many different ways to visit the web site but no luck. So I decided to google search the type of martial art I was talking about. It was an Israeli self defense technique. The next thing you know I was googling away and ended up on a German site, then another site which was written in Arabic and then another that was talking about nuclear war and yet another that was showing me techniques on how to kill the enemy and protect myself. I couldn't believe all the information I was able to access, normally China has such tight control over what web sites you can visit. I started feeling a little bit paranoid so I quit the search. I remember reading about people being monitored while they were on skype and others having had their e-mails read, it was all a bit eerie.

A little while later, after our teacher left, Dean started dinner and I sat down to look over my homework when there was a knock at the door. I thought maybe it was Wong and he'd forgotten something. Dean opened the door and there stood two plain clothed officers with their badges out and one of the security guards from downstairs. They wanted our passports and wanted to know whose apartment this was.... Okay, yes for a brief second I thought.. OH MY GOD THEY'VE COME FOR ME!! Why did I visit those dam web sites. They must have been monitoring my computer. Now what???

By the time I got to the door Dean was telling them, in chinese, that he wanted to talk to someone who spoke english. One of the guys put his badge away and pulled out a cell phone and dialed the office. I went to get the passports and when I got back Dean was on the phone charming the lady on the other end. Seems we didn't register with the police as required by the Chinese goverment of all foreign national. They wanted us to follow them down the street to make copies and then go to the police station to register, but Dean had other plans. Now speaking fluent chinese, he said we would make the copies tonight but that we wouldn't be going to the police station until we returned from Hong Kong.

By this time he had the two guys and the girl on the phone laughing and smiling. The other guy was a stone, all business. Long story longer we walked down the street to make copies and then back to the apartment to our now cold dinner. Excitement living abroad. Again, I don't know what I would've done had Dean not been there to straighten things out. His ability to make everyone feel comfortable and at ease is remarkable. ALL IN CHINESE!!! He continues to astonish me..
No I didn't get a picture of the police at the door so instead here is a picture of Dean on the way to Hong Kong.

Posted by JohnVosler 03:42 Archived in China Tagged living_abroad

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