Asian Disaster: On Dating Chinese Guys and other Mishaps

Back in the day – I was probably around eight or nine – my mum used to drag me to Poland to spent the summers with my grandparents and the rest of the extended family. It was the same every year, in fact it was our ritual all the way through primary school. For a while I loved it, my grandparents were great fun and there were plenty of kids around. Mum was mostly busy catching up with relatives, so I got plenty of unsupervised playtime. Any child’s dream. A sea of kids to entertain you, loose parenting, great food, holidays… 

Except, I really didn’t enjoy it was much as mum thought I did.

All my cousins were boys and they played rough. My older cousins wouldn’t let me join their soccer games, saying it wasn’t a girl’s game and my younger cousins, well quite frankly, I didn’t know what to do with them. I found myself constantly fighting for dominance, fighting to be noticed, fighting to be part of the group. It was exhausting. No matter how much I gave out, my older cousins only ever took but didn’t throw any punches in return. My younger cousins got the brunt of my anger and more often then not I found myself in trouble with the aunts and uncles. They made it quite obvious that I way too wild and while mum tried her best to keep me – at least somewhat – under control, she failed miserably. She wasn’t a bad mother, not at all. She did the best she could but I was a loose cannonball, with way too much energy on hand, and there wasn’t much she could do about that.

Sooner rather than later, I gave it to her straight – there’d be no more summer vacations in Poland, at least not ones that included me. I had no intention of going, I wanted to hang out with the few friends I’d at home. Back when I was a wee tod I became firm friends with this gal – about two years older than me – and we were practically inseparable. Let’s call her K. She was the cool one, daring and bold, and I was the shy one, tagging behind and silently admiring her. In hindsight, this relationship between us could have gone south quite easily, especially when we came into our teenage years, but while K was wild and unpredictable she never went over the top. 

She was the first one I ever had a drink with. In fact, we had a lot of firsts together and she forever tried to drag me to parties, to meet more people, to be less shy and more open. She was the first one to have a boyfriend but I was kind of a late bloomer and found boys rather disgusting until sometime in seventh grade.

If I remember right I was about fourteen then. We’d just started a new year and our new homeroom teacher was calling us out individually to come up and present our report cards from the previous year. You see, no matter how perfect our grades were, our parents had to sign the report card and we had to present them after the summer holiday. The easiest way to get onto the homeroom’s teacher’s blacklist was not to have a signed report card with you on the first day of class. Back then I was an OK student. I didn’t impress but I wasn’t completely without any talent, I was somewhere in the middle. I was also lucky enough in the regard that my parents never gave me a hard time when it came to signing for grades. No matter how good or bad they were, I always got my signature. Naturally I preferred asking Dad for his precious autograph – mum did sometimes give me a little bit of grief – but either way was fine. As for that particular report card, I’d asked both my parents to sign in, for no other reason than that I wanted both their signatures on the paper. It was important to me and they didn’t mind.

The teacher had just called my name and I’d made my way to the front of the class to show my report card when there was a knock on the door and when it opened seconds later, a fit young lad stepped in. Tall, extremely handsome, spiky blond hair, piercing blue eyes, cheeky grin on his face, Harry Potter-style glasses. He looked a perfect mixture between geeky and cool and in hindsight he reminded me a little bit of a young Nicky Byrne from Westlife. The moment I set my eyes on him, my mouth went dry and my stomach did summersaults. I nearly died when he grinned at me and gave him a shy smile. He winked and I thought I’d faint. I didn’t know what had just happened but when I returned to my seat, I was in a daze. As a result, I sat down beside my chair and landed flat on my arse with a loud thud. I was bright-red in the face and after the teacher reprimanded me, the rest of the class laughed at me. They hadn’t noticed my fangirlish reaction to our new arrival and feeling mortified I quietly sat down, wanting and hoping for the floor to open up and swallow me alive. Instead the new guy shot me this killer smile and I felt like I’d died and gone to Heaven.

I wasn’t quite sure what had happened and that afternoon I sought out K to tell her all about it. She listened patiently and her informed decision was that I had a major crush on the new guy. It was all news to me, but a crush I had indeed. I couldn’t stop staring at him and whenever he looked my way, I’d go all red and mumbled incomprehensible gibberish. It got so bad that even my homeroom teacher coped on to what was going on. Somehow everyone seemed to wait for me to make move, to tell the new guy exactly how I felt about him. Even K told me to get over myself and just tell the guy. I wasn’t going to do any such thing, instead I quietly brooded away over my crush, dreaming of being his girlfriend. It was puppy love, really.

Even my homeroom teacher took pity on me, and, miraculously, for every single assignment I found myself paired with the new guy, my teacher’s feeble attempt at pushing me to make a move. I stubbornly refused, that just wasn’t me, and instead continued to nurse my crush on Mr Handsome. When, sometime later, a friend fell for him, I offered to help her write him a letter and later watched them go out together. It broke my heart but I kept my feelings to myself – instead starting a brief puppy love relationship with a girl, though how that came together I’m still not sure about. In any way, I was content that the new guy would always chose me to be on his team when we played basketball after school. Amongst all the girls, I showed some serious talent and the boys liked that. In that regard I was one of them, but that was about it.

Fast forward a couple of years, I finally got over my crush, but I hadn’t gotten any braver at talking to boys. My friends took pity on me and tried to pair me off with one of the guys two years above me but I chinked out when he asked me for a date. K and the other girls were at a loss, I was too shy for my own good, at least when it came to boys. In all other departments I had a big mouth and never ever shut my trap. Graduation loomed over me and I was desperate to leave my small hometown behind. I wanted to go big. I’d dreams of living it up in America or even Australia. I wanted to go somewhere were I got speak English. I didn’t like German, it was too strict and serious for me. I felt like the odd one out. I wanted to get away and I was adamant about it. Also, I was pretty sure that if I stayed, I’d never find a decent guy, my hometown being far too small for that. In the year coming up to graduation I had this big dream of using my language skills to work for one of big international companies, I’d had my heart set on Daimler-Chrysler or BMW down in Munich. I’d heard they were looking for foreign language correspondents and so that became my dream. I worked my arse off to try and get into one of the business schools to complete the degree, but the fee was steep and nothing my family could afford to pay.

I figured the German Federal Law on Support in Education (BAföG) would pay for it, but my dreams got crushed and feeling like my entire life was over, my need to get away became stronger and stronger. My parents didn’t stop me and before graduation dad send me off to America to visit my mum’s best friend and her daughter. We’d become good friends a couple years back on a rare mother and daughter trip to Poland and until today I’ve no idea how my parents paid for this holiday. Well, actually I do, and I can’t believe my mum actually did this for me. She sacrificed everything for me and I’ll be eternally grateful to her for what she did, although back then I was a bit of a b*tch.
Anyway, off I went, my first flight and going across the Atlantic too. Back then most seventeen-year-olds only got to dream of such an opportunity and for the next couple of weeks I lived it up. I fell hopelessly in love with San Francisco and when the time came for me to return to Germany, I cried and cried and cried. I didn’t want to leave. My trip had made one thing pretty clear to me, I needed to, no, had to, get away from that suffocating small town, I’d spend the first eighteen years of my life in.

My dream was still in shambles, but I put my head down and got through my graduation. Mum, wanting to help my future along and show me that I shouldn’t lose hope, organised internships and part-time jobs, sent me to Paris and Italy and Greece and came up with a million ideas of how to turn my life around. At that point, I was a right brat, I couldn’t care less about any of her efforts and found her help invading and distracting. We argued, we fought to the degree that dad was sure one of us would end up scratching the other’s eyes out. Throughout it all, I just had one idea. I wanted to get away, there was no way I was staying in my hometown. I got in touch with my aunt in Scotland and poured my heart out to her. She took pity on me and suggested I’d do some AuPair work. Despite being the youngest in the family, I had experience with younger kids and loved being around them. My aunt explained the whole concept to me and the idea of looking after kids, doing light housework and getting paid for it, really appealed. I decided Scotland was the place to be but when it came down to it I couldn’t understand their strange accents and freaked out.

At this stage I’d gotten over my mental obsession with an American boyband named ‘Natural’ and had pretty much stopped following them around everywhere. But I’d made a bunch of new friends and I was getting hooked on boybands bigtime. I didn’t like the look of the Backstreet Boys, although I had to admit that their music was good and hated Take That’s “Back for Good” with a passion. My friends laughed at my unfounded hatred – I could never give them a good reason for my dislike of the song – and before long my bedroom walls were plastered with Westlife posters. I was a woman possessed, especially after the first time I set my eyes on Shane Filan. Suddenly I remembered that new boy from all those years ago and Shane Filan became just that guy, even though the two couldn’t have looked any more different. Still, I had the biggest crush on Shane and – fuelled by one of my friends, who’d moved to Ireland a while back – I was determined to follow into her footsteps. It seemed like a great idea, it ticked all the boxes.

Get away, make money and be closer to Westlife and therefore also Shane Filan, though I wasn’t quite sure why I want to archive that last goal. It wasn’t like I wanted to marry him. Scratch that, I did want to marry him. Just about every teenage girl in Europe wanted to be his girlfriend… Still, it was just an innocent crush type of thing, not something I was seriously considering. I had final exams looming over me so I put my head down – only briefly losing sight once when Westlife came to Germany for a bunch of live shows – and told my parents that I intended to move to Ireland. I wisely didn’t mention my obsession with Shane Filan or Westlife (though I’m sure dad knew all about it anyway) and went about finding a suitable AuPair job somewhere on the Emerald Isle. I knew virtually nothing about Ireland, except that I wanted to move there. Because that’s just how you should go about moving to a new country, right? Jump in head first.

I briefly dated a dark-haired bloke, K set me up with, but it fizzled out as soon as it started. My heart simply wasn’t in it but K was determined that I should have at least one successful relationship under my belt. Successful…that part was debatable. Thinking back now, I reckon K had the bar set quite low. In her eyes ‘successful’ meant I’d get a good snog out of it.

Still, I was already halfway to Ireland and I was damned if I was going to let some guy interfere with my plans. I didn’t even give him a chance. I simply didn’t see the point. In hindsight, it was decent of me not to string him along, but I could have been nicer to the poor bloke. Nevertheless, he took the breakup like a man and I went off to pursue my dream of living in Ireland. I still remember that moment when I stepped off the plane. The aircraft had come to a halt somewhere far off the terminal building and as I clambered down the shaky staircase to get to the shuttle bus I took a couple of deep breaths and felt oddly at peace. I hadn’t even left the airport yet but my heart already felt at home, I definitely didn’t want to leave again.

Before long I was having the time of my life and even though my stint as AuPair didn’t last long, I didn’t give up. I wasn’t going to give up on Ireland and was determined to make it work. I dragged my friend up to the capital, and together we shacked up in a big hostel dormitory. We were determined to find real jobs. We were both a bit mad on Westlife and whenever they were on the telly, we’d take over the common room in the hostel and hide the remote control. The other guests weren’t impressed but somehow the staff let us get away with it. Their reprimands were only ever half-arsed attempts to make us hand over the remote, but puppy dog eyes and pleading always worked in our favour. Also, Westlife were Irish and so was the staff, so yes, we definitely got away with it. I remember there was this one lad working at the hostel (dark hair, brown eyes…if you get my drift) and I had a bit of a crush on him, but for some reason he seemed convinced that the girl was with was actually my girlfriend. I have no idea how he got that into his head, but I guess it was because she and I were joined at the hip.

Fast forward a couple of months, I was no longer living in a hostel but sharing a room with my new bestie and partner in crime. We did our best to find a job and dad was being as supportive as he could. He sent money to cover the rent but even he kept reminding me that he couldn’t and wouldn’t be doing that forever, effectively pressuring me to either find a job or come back. The day he said he wouldn’t be sending any more money was the day I got a job offer to work for Microsoft. Some people want to be pop stars or win the lottery but I felt like I’d just won the jackpot. Finally, a proper job and in an international company to boot. I felt on top of the world and I couldn’t get the grin off my face, I was beaming, I was ecstatic. I will honestly never forget that day, it was the best day of my life. Looking back, all I can say is that I was so young and so innocent, but getting that job meant the world to me. I felt validated, I felt like I’d just climbed Everest. I was well and truly on the way to building a life for myself and I didn’t need my parents anymore.

Of course, the moment I started working, dad kept nagging me to get some form of higher education and quite literally told him to f*ck off. I was making money now, there was no way I was going back to a classroom. No sooner had I said the words, I apologised profusely and then did exactly what my dad asked me to do, I found a way of getting educated, though my heart was most definitely not in it, all while keeping my job. Turns out, I was doing great at work, I went from strength to strength. My only regret is that I never really took the opportunity to hang out with my colleagues. They often asked me to join them at the pub, especially on a Friday, but I couldn’t jump over my own shadow, I wanted nothing more than to proof to everyone that I wasn’t just some stupid, young bimbo, but that I actually had skills. I figured going out drinking wasn’t one of them, so I turned down most invitations.

Back then my social life really sucked. Instead of enjoying life I kept my head down and worked myself to the ground, wanting to proof to everyone that I had it in me. I went above and beyond to archive that goal, but if you ask me now, I could have probably done a little less of that and a little more of, you know, being social.

Fast forward a couple more years, I felt like the job was no longer a challenge. I was pretty good at it – even if my temper was a bit unpredictable at times – and it became easy. I felt bored and figured I needed something to challenge me mentally. In the beginning the job had done that for me, but now that I knew what I was doing, I needed something else. There was always story writing, but I needed something else.

Back then it never occurred to me to give dating a try, I was kind of happy by myself. I didn’t have the talent to pursue anyone I liked and lacked the confidence to believe anyone might like me. I tried playing the guitar but my teacher played with his right hand and I was left-handed. I couldn’t wrap my head around converting from right to left and eventually gave up. I continued to agonise over my lack of mental stimulation for months on end until I finally came to the conclusion that I could learn another language. At this stage, Dublin was a bit of a melting pot for people from all over Europe – what with so many international companies choosing Ireland for their European headquarters – but none of these languages tickled my fancy and another couple of months of debating with myself I eventually decided to learn Chinese.

When I told dad, he was very supportive. K and another good friend of mine probably thought I was nuts but they had the decency to keep their opinion about my latest endeavour to themselves. Before long, I was head over heels in love with the Chinese language, the culture, the food… I’d discovered a famous popstar – Wang Leehom – and couldn’t get enough of his music. I couldn’t understand a single word of what he was singing about, but that just made me study harder.

Suddenly I had a new dream. I wanted to move to China. I think even my dad thought I was nuts when I told him, but as ever he continued to be supportive, telling me to do whatever I thought was right. Around the time that dream popped into my head, I was a little bit fed up with living in Ireland. I still loved my job but the overtime was getting to me and I wanted a change. And I change I got. Jobwise I ended up making two bad choices but I was young and burning with the desire to try something new. If I could go back in time, I’d do a couple of things differently and although I initially had regrets, I’m now well and truly over it.

Learning Chinese also meant that I got to know a bunch of new and interesting people. One of them was Tim – that’s the English name I gave him. He had the most gorgeous smile, the sweetest dark-brown eyes and a seriously sexy black mop of hair. To this day I’m still confused about how we actually met, but I vaguely recall a mutual friend introducing us.

Remember me telling you about wanting to move to China? Well, after meeting Tim I wanted to do that more so than ever. My friends and my Chinese teacher cautioned me, but I was already in to deep and in 2012 I got my wish. Well not exactly. For my twenty-fifth birthday I got to travel to China and spend about a month exploring the country. That was also the first time I got to meet Tim in the flesh. He came to Shanghai to spend my birthday with me and made me, and another friend of mine, feel like I was a goodness. I probably spend most of the day telling my friend all about how hot I thought this guy was but I just didn’t have it in me to make a move and was convinced that I would never stand a chance with a guy like him.

Later that evening, it was still my birthday, I was to find out exactly how wrong I was. Our whirlwind romance took off right out of nowhere and with the most amazing kiss ever. I came back to Ireland with my head full of stupid ideas, really stupid ideas. I was convinced that I’d met the man of my dreams and we talked marriage and kids all the time. Suddenly, all the things, I’d never considered before, seemed possible. I wanted to get away so badly, I just wanted to be with him. We made plans for him to visit but when his visa got rejected and our long-distance relationship was extended by another people of months, we could most definitely feel the strain. Still, I wasn’t going to give up on my Prince Charming and we tried our best to remain positive. Again, my friends cautioned me and again I wouldn’t listen. He was the one for me, or so I repeatedly told myself and everyone around me. I was head over heels in love, sickeningly so, and looking back, I’m pretty sure that I went on just about everyone’s nerves. I wouldn’t listen to reason, now more so than ever, I had my heart set on leaving Ireland behind and starting over in China. I didn’t hate Ireland, I still loved it more than anything for it had become my home, but like I said, I was in love.

Eventually, what with Tim’s visa having been denied, I somehow managed to get about a month off work and decided to fly to China. He was over the moon when I told him and for a while everything seemed great again. Gone was the strain of what had seemed like an everlasting long-distance relationship. We were together again and I couldn’t get enough of him. Tim, on the other hand, was, after a while, happy to keep me at an arms’ length but I was oblivious to what was happening. At times it was obvious but I just wouldn’t see it, didn’t want to. I was convinced it was just the culture difference and even when we started fighting – that was shortly before I was due to return to Ireland and I couldn’t bear the thought of leaving him again – I put on a brave face and pretended everything was okay.

By the time I got back to Ireland, shit was hitting the fan and my relationship – sometimes I wonder if we actually ever had one – was well and truly falling apart. I could feel it and it tore me apart. I didn’t want to accept it and I dug my heels in, clinging to the illusion that everything would be great again once I moved to China. He had after all brought me a ring, he’d promised to marry me. We wanted to spend forever together, I was sure that whatever hurdles life was throwing at us, we would get through it, we would survive, because well we had each other. On the inside I was miserable, I couldn’t imagine a life without him. To me he was the man of my dreams. I was – or at least I thought I was – so in love with the man I was oblivious to anything. My friends would try to keep me on the straight and narrow but I couldn’t and wouldn’t give up on what I thought was the love of my life. We were at the verge of breaking up – in fact, I believe at some point we even broke up – and when I got this amazing job offer back in Ireland, I should have realised to give up on my illusion of the perfect romance but I wouldn’t have it. I was adamant, I wanted to give up all I had build for myself in Ireland, I wanted to move to China and so I did.

I’d thought so hard to get a job in his hometown, I’d stupidly given up everything for him and I was convinced I was doing the right thing. The moment I arrived, jet-lagged and exhausted beyond imagination, I realised I’d been kidding myself all along. There was no perfect romance, there was nothing. I worked really hard to make a name for myself in my new job but no matter what I did, it was never good enough and I soon realised that no matter how hard I would work, nobody would ever give a toss about my efforts or reward me for any of them. Still, I just couldn’t give up on that too, so I put on a brave face and pretended everything as perfect. I pretended that I had the perfect job, the perfect fiancé, the perfect life. Not even my dad, my closest confidante, knew what was going on. For the first time in my life, I stopped confiding in him. His health wasn’t the best and I was chewing my nails with worry, thinking I might just lose him. There was no way I could tell him about the mess my life had become. There was nobody I could tell. I was all alone and getting more and more depressed by the minute. I wouldn’t and couldn’t accept that Tim didn’t love me the way I loved him – probably never did – and I was mad that I’d given up everything only to be so cruelly taken advantage of. I figured, if I was to disappear from the earth, nobody would miss me.

Less than six months into my new life in China, on a Valentine’s Day I will never forget (for all the wrong reasons), I had a fateful accident with an electric hot water bottle. Tim had been nice enough to call but he wasn’t there and that infuriated me. He was never there and I always gave him an ear-bashing about it, but he never changed. Nothing ever changed. Except that night it did. I scalded myself so horrendously that I would spend the next three months in and out of hospital, needing surgery even. My parents were shocked and helpless, as were my friends, and I found myself tied to a bed, relying on friends for almost everything. Work was utterly oblivious and ignorant and Tim? Well, he was absent, as ever. That’s when I finally realised that I had to break free, before he destroyed every last shred of my sanity. I finally allowed myself to acknowledge the fact that a guy who doesn’t show up when you need surgery is a guy that will never show up. For anything.
I resolutely broke all ties with him and it didn’t even seem to matter to him. I was heartbroken but I had other things on my mind – namely getting better. I was heartbroken and once I’d broken free from the illusion that I’d found the perfect man, would have a perfect wedding, perfect children and a perfect life, I pretty much turned into what can only be described as a “slut”. I think my story made it pretty obvious that I’ve never been fairly straightforward with any guy – except one bloke I dated for a split second while still in Ireland. He was so insistently trying to get into my knickers that, in a feeble attempt to get him off my back, I told him that I would sleep with him if he got me a meet & greet with Shane Filan from Westlife. He actually agreed to that and the next day I blocked and deleted his phone number and pretended he’d never existed.

Back to my post-breakup meltdown then. I had somehow managed to convince myself that if Tim didn’t want me, I would make damn sure that everyone else did want me. I was on a mission to sleep with as many guys as possible and I didn’t really care about how many or the aftermath of it all. I had to repeatedly tell myself that I was having fun, but that was a blatant lie. I just wasn’t that kind of girl and when one guy asked me to be his girlfriend only to break up with me the morning after we, well, got down to business, I lost the rag. I couldn’t believe why Chinese men were so utterly incapable of having one-night-stands. It was as if they thought they’d break my heart if they told me that they only wanted sex and I couldn’t comprehend the lengths they’d go to, to avoid telling me all they wanted was a fling. I certainly didn’t want more than that. Still, I couldn’t live with the constant betrayal and thought all Chinese men were rotten to the core. I was convinced that back home guys didn’t treat you like that, back home guys made it obvious if they were only in it for the sex.

I was, however, still in the midst of a post-breakup meltdown and despite being careful, one of my mediocre flings resulted in a pregnancy. I never had that child, though it wasn’t my decision not to, and my meltdown turned into a breakdown. I’d never thought I’d ever have children, but that was before Tim and his constant talk about how we’d have the perfect family: one boy and one girl and how the four of us would live happily ever after. When that was taken away from me too, I went of the rails big time. I pushed just about everyone away from me and wouldn’t let anyone close. Well, there’s one person who got through but he shall remain nameless. Though, hadn’t it been for him I reckon I mightn’t be writing this today.

My Asian Disaster. I couldn’t think of a more fitting title and it’s almost comical how spot on it is. Not only was my entire relationship with Tim a disaster, no, so was my subsequent meltdown and the breakdown that followed. In all honesty, it made me bitter and properly turned me off relationships and love. I couldn’t see the point in it, and although I’ve since enjoyed being pursuit by a good few men, I have come to realise that they all fit in one of two categories. They were all either another Tim or one of the good-for-nothing w**kers I got involved with while on the rebound.

While I am sure that there are definitely a couple of decent Asian men out there – there’s proof – I must admit I’ve thoroughly gone off them. Admittedly, I’m surrounded by a bunch of handsome guys, but I’ve zero interest in dating any of them. Too much has happened for me to even consider. Once burned, twice shy, huh? Somehow it fits perfectly. I’ve never been the most outgoing person but in the short period that I gave love a try I had my heart torn out, stamped on, shredded to pieces and burned to ashes. I’ve since picked it up off the ground and painstakingly pierced it back together and I’m not even remotely interested in allowing anyone to get close enough to break my fragile heart. It’s mine and mine alone.

Besides, I’m really not the kind of gal who will happily live in the same flat with my husband’s parents, raising my children exactly the way his mother sees fit. My kids, my style of parenting. My kids, my style of education. If they come out of my womb, I damn well demand to have a say in how they’re raised and will not pawn them off on their grandparents – or an Ayi – to be looked after while I enjoy life. I’m also not into sajiaoing and constantly fighting to be considered more important than all the overtime he has to do or business dinners he has to attend. I’m worth enough to come first, not second or third and most definitely not last. I had the pleasure of experiencing first hand what it feels like to be considered least important and I’m not doing that ever again. I’m not settling for anything like that, I’m worth so much more than that. I know that now.

I’ve never been the type of person to care about wealth. Growing up, wealth to me meant getting a fiver after scrubbing down dad’s car. Back then I felt like a millionaire, and I still do now. Before learning about – and experiencing – Chinese dating, I was convinced that two people could be happy as long as they had each other, but that kind of concept is pretty much non-existent in China. Having a car, a good job and owning a house is just not a prerequisite for a relationship for me. A relationship built on those particular pillars isn’t a relationship to me. I was raised to believe that, as long as they had each other, two people could be happy with nothing and deep down I still believe that to be true. If two people love each other enough and are willing to work hard for their dream, anything is possible. Life isn’t easy and shying away from trouble is just looking for disaster.

A girl on a famous Chinese Dating show (Fei Cheng Wu Rao / 非诚勿扰 / If You Are the One) once said she’d rather cry in the back of the BMW than be happy on the back of a bike. Well, I would rather cry on the back of a bike than be happy in a BMW, because let’s face it, at the end of the day it’s just a car. I do not come from wealth, I’ve never known wealth and I’ve no interest in wealth. Having enough money to live on is enough for me. For me money doesn’t mean security, it doesn’t give me a sense of belonging. However, a man who works hard, who is intelligent, funny and knows how to treat a woman right will always win my heart over a flash car, a big fat bank account and a couple of expensive properties. Living in any of them wouldn’t feel like home anyway. If I haven’t spent a dime on it, then it isn’t home and if it isn’t home I don’t want to live there.

I’ve come to the conclusion that Chinese men just aren’t for me and while I don’t regret my move to China any longer, I think that maybe, just maybe, I might have had enough.