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Published: April 13th 2018
By this point in time, I was very well settled in Suzhou. I have amazing friends and have become quite the social butterfly. But to an extent that I did not even realise. After a year of flatting with Americans then a year with just one Irish girl, feeling like a challenge, I made the decision to flat alone. I was getting to the point I just needed some me time and a place to calm down and reconnect with my inner self. What better way to do this than in a beautiful two bedroomed apartment with a massive 52 inch tv on the 16th floor with a great view and have it all to myself!? Of course, moving into a new flat is not complete without a house warming party.
So I decided by October 2017 it was time to have my house warming because I had been living there since August yet not hosted any significant event to celebrate my move in. So I created a WeChat group for my house warming. For those of you not familiar with the WeChat app it's China's equivalent of WhatsApp, Facebook, paywave, food deliveries and everything else you need in life all rolled into one. Anyway, I started adding people into the group who I wanted there and rather quickly the group grew from ten to twenty to about 40-something people coming to my little apartment on the 16th floor where walls are not sound proof.
As I was very aware I had gone a bit overboard in inviting people to my party (even inviting some people I would meet on an evening out at the bar and they said they were all for it), I decided to pre-warn my neighbours it would be loud at this particular event. I was so cautious I even got a Chinese translation and informed the security guards of my complex.
The night of the party finally arrived. I was drinking my fav; prosecco, with people of all different nationalities, races, colours, and sexualities. It was the most beautiful thing to watch because there was just so many different people from various cultural backgrounds but yet we all had one thing in common - we were all just trying to find our way in China way or another and it all just worked. Unfortunately, this got to me so much because I was so overwhelmed with happiness and appreciation for all these wonderful people coming to see me I did end up mucking up my make up by bawling my eyes out.
When I finally got myself together, the party was truly underway. Although, given that we had so many people in this one apartment and drinking, of course we were a bit noisy. We also had music going and oh, how we love to dance here in Suzhou. At 12am we hear a knock on the door. Somehow with my strict teacher voice I manage to hush every one and answered the door. Waiting for me were not my friendly security guards but the police in full riot gear ready to shut down my party. Long story short, we headed to Hemingway to finish the night out.
The drama continues. Next morning, I get a message from my agent who deals with all my housing. My landlord wants to see me regarding this party last night. He said he was coming over in half hour. Apparently landlords can do that in China.... I had to wake up the people that stayed at my apartment to help clean up spilled sangria, cigarette butts on my balcony and all the alcohol and glasses around my apartment. By some miracle, we managed to clean my entire apartment ready to be inspected.
The landlord arrives and asks what went on. I decided to be smart and play as many foreigner cards as possible. I told him it was a tradition in our culture to have a celebration when someone moves to a different home and it just got a little noisy but I am extremely sorry and it is absolutely a one off.
Somehow, I managed to get off Scott Free. #winningatlife
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