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Tag Archives: humor

“Sorry – I Can’t…I Am Knocked Up!”

3 Jul

Last week Beijing celebrated Roberto Cavalli’s new fragrance at the Legendale Hotel with champagne, martinis, and one crazy Eastern European exotic dancer (i.e. – her full time job is most likely a stripper at Chocolate…click to read about this Beijing “treasure”).  I, on the other hand, celebrated with sparkling water and a headache from the strobe lights and the massive amounts of perfume being pumped through the vents.  Don’t get me wrong – I had a great time…but it turns out that some parties are less preggers friendly than others.

Brett & Morgan Hutchinson – Roberto Cavalli Fragrance Launch Beijing 2012

Sarah Wilson & Morgan Hutchinson – Roberto Cavalli Fragrance Launch Beijing 2012

One thing I certainly do love about being pregnant in China is that the local ladies praise you for the smallest of accomplishments.  Case in point – the mere fact that I was wearing heels awarded me many an admiring word.  But the highlight of my night came just moments after the “dancer” finished her routine and left the stage (more of a life-size trophy stand really).

“Exotic dancer” and an admiring male model at the Cavalli Fragrance Launch

As I stood there watching and chatting with Brett and Sarah, one of the local PR girls responsible for the event approached me and asked if I would like a “go”.

 “A go?  A go… at what, Miss?”  I quite confusedly asked her.
“Would you like to go next?” She responded, pointing to the trophy stand.
After my initial shock and short, yet warranted bout of laughter – I said to her, “Sorry, I can’t – I am knocked up!”
This of course was a bit lost in translation, so I quickly added, “I mean – I really shouldn’t,  I am 5 months pregnant”.  And then guess what happened?  That’s right – more praise for the high heels.  Fabulous.

I must be honest though – I was tempted.  If only the “stage” had been a little larger (and safer).  What a great story it could have been to tell the little one some day…  But alas – I guess I will just have to stick to the legendary tale of how her grandmother, Momo, beat out scores of 18-year olds at age 37 to win a HOT LEG’S CONTEST.  Not even an official mother yet – and I am already a disappointment  to our family’s legacy ♥

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A Bump in Beijing!

27 Jun

While I cannot yet confirm whether or not our little one will be another Blonde in Beijing – I can confirm that this bump does in fact contain a petite-pois with an ETA of November 4th!  Brett and I couldn’t be happier.  I hope that this announcement will excuse my absence from posting of late.  Between the morning sickness, exhaustion, migraines, and two transatlantic trips to the states – leaving me with two lovely and lingering cases of jet lag, my creative juices have not been flowing…to say the least.  Now that I am 21 weeks along – my energy appears to be back a bit and my appetite for living vicariously through the Resort 2013 collections is in full force – I believe that I am back to being the Blonde in Beijing.  I am just a bigger version!

Speaking of bigger…here are shots of The Bump in Beijing from week 18 to 21.  More weekly “bump” shots to come (mostly for our family’s sake!)  And for my fashion followers – you needn’t worry.  With resort just finishing and couture shows around the corner, there will be plenty!

The Bump in Beijing: Weeks 18-21

Ice Fishing???

24 Feb

Only in China can you find two men “ice fishing”, on a Wednesday afternoon in below freezing temperatures from a shallow, trash-filled stream in the middle of Beijing.  With cold fingers and a red nose, I watched them for quite some time.  Unfortunately – but not surprising at all…there was no catch of the day!  Love the dedication, Zhong Guo Nan Ren!

Only in China: JAMMED!

21 Feb

While it was certainly not the first “JAM” I have spotted in China, it was one of the more intense.  It is also Reason Number 486:  Why I will not be driving a motor bike anytime soon.  Reasons 1 through 485….I am a terrible driver.  Period.

If a Valentine Walked the Runway

15 Feb

I believe that if Hallmark cards up and decided to leave their “racks” for the runway that they would most likely look like this…

Meadham Kirchoff Spring 2012

Meadham Kirchoff Spring 2012

Thakoon Fall 2012

Meadham Kirchoff Spring 2012

I think it is very clear that Hallmark needs keep their cards in check…we can’t have these looks running around every day!

Images courtesy of http://www.style.com

From Russia with NO Love

2 Feb

Walking down the never-ending hallway of LEFT luggage....

I suppose it is not really fair to use the phrase “NO Love” when, in fact, we did feel a Dr. Zhivago and Lara kind of love during our time in Russia.  That said, it is very fair to say that immediately upon arrival, we felt NO love.

It all started when Aeroflot decided to cancel the redeye flight from Beijing.  This forced us to take the morning flight 12 hours earlier than intended and add an overnight in Moscow.  Honestly, we were thrilled.  Our original plan was to visit Saint Petersburg only. Now we had the opportunity to see their capital city and experience some serious Russian nightlife!  I immediately booked a hotel  – just feet from Red Square and began chatting with the concierge about bookings for the evening.  Thanks to our great friend, Michael Davitiashvili and his wonderful recommendations, we were set with a 9PM dinner at Pushkin on the 2nd floor in their romantic Library room, 11:30 after dinner drinks and dancing at Karlson, and a 2AM reservation for dessert and more dancing at the Soho Rooms.  It could have been the perfect evening…but as you may have guessed by now – we never made it.

Perhaps it was excitement that clouded our judgement or perhaps it was just plain ignorance, but neither Brett nor I thought about the implications that arriving to Russia 12 hours earlier might have on our Visas.  You see – getting into Russia is not a cake walk.  The visa application alone is quite comprehensive – requiring all sorts of personal history including details of education, employment, and family.  Somehow – even after completing this lengthy process, it still did not occur to us that our Visas would have such rigid arrival and departure dates.  After all, every other country we have visited that requires Visas (which of late has been almost all of them) offers a window of at least 30 days for arrival and departure.  We now know (after learning by way of quarantine) that Russia is an exception.

The truth is – we noticed the specificity of the dates on our Visas for the first time as we were filling out our immigration arrival cards at 30,000 feet just 30 minutes before landing in Moscow.  Initially is seemed like a cause for concern, but our flight attendants assured us that everything would be fine.  In retrospect, I believe that they were just trying to shelter us from our inevitable fate; and that they didn’t want to disrupt our last glass of champagne before being thrown to the immigration wolves. I may have done the same thing…I mean – who wants to be the bearer of bad news if you don’t have to be?

When we got to the immigration hall, I received a text message that our car service was waiting for us just outside of baggage claim.  We believed (thanks to the false positives of the Aeroflot Crew) that are trip was off to the perfect start.  Immigration was blowing people through the lines, and in no time at all, it was our turn.  Unfortunately, “our turn” turned out to last for almost 10 hours…

While our plane landed at 4:40PM – we were not allowed into the country until midnight.  After flying for 8 hours, the last thing you want to do is hang out in the airport for another 8…especially when you have already reached your destination!  We begged and pleaded to no avail.  Finally, a member of the security crew of the airport  came to our rescue – sort of.  He agreed to escort us to the First Class Lounge and free us from immigration purgatory where there wasn’t even so much as a water fountain.  Unfortunately for us though, the Olympian skilled speed walker was already out of sight when we discovered that our previous first class boarding passes did not currently qualify us to relax in the lounge.  So – from immigration purgatory, we had now entered duty-free purgatory.  Bad duty-free purgatory –  liquor and cigarette only duty-free.

What else could we do but laugh?  Perhaps I laughed after I shed a couple of silly girl tears…but I assure you that the laughing came fairly soon!  We decided to get something to eat, have a beer, and then try to find a place to get some rest before our freedom would ring at the stroke of midnight.

Not exactly Belluga...and not exactly the Blinis or toast points we were hoping for! But we did have pre-packed butter and plastic knives so that's something.

I am not sure why we thought airport caviar would be a good idea…but when in Russia, right?  It was definitely not the caviar tasting experience that I was expecting…but that would come later.  Looking back, I kind of love the way it turned out.  I mean – at least I didn’t fall into a fire or anything!

At 11:30, after several hours of terrible sleep piled up like two puppies on a park bench, we trekked back to the security office to wait for an officer to escort us back to the immigration hall.  At 11:50, a half-naked man poked his head out of the office door to say he would be with us in 5 minutes.  A man of his word, the three of us were on our way to immigration at 11:55PM.  We arrived at 11:57 and were told to wait for 3 minutes.  3 minutes became 10 – but at 12:07 we were released!  Not without being fined first though –  for breaking their immigration laws. 2000 Rubles each (about $75 USD).

I received yet another text message alert that a second car service had been sent and was waiting for us again just outside baggage claim.  (FYI – we had to pay for the first one as well – which is awesome!)  We thought we had reached the promise land…but we were wrong.  Apparently, it is just too easy for them to leave your bags in the terminal in which you arrive.  So they sent our bags to a far, far away Moscow airport land.  For those of you who have spent anytime in the Moscow International Airport, you can appreciate what this meant.  It meant a 10 minute drive plus an hour-long walk down what seemed to be the longest, most disturbing hallway (outside of a mental institution) that I have ever seen.  Eventually, we were reunited with our bags – but there was no shortage of paperwork filled out in order to claim them.  And why have a copy machine when you can just re-write the 3 page bag-reclaim application by hand 3 times?

It was after 2 AM before we reached our hotel.  According to our original plan, we would have been sitting down for a delicious dessert at The Soho Rooms…instead we opted to share a Ritz cheeseburger and hit the sack.  We drifted off to sleep with prayers for a brighter tomorrow.  It’s affirmative.  God does answer prayers!

Stayed tuned for the rest of our Russian tale….I promise it get’s better – and so do the pictures!

TRAVEL TIP:  When we return to Russia (and we will because despite the above story – it is absolutely lovely) we will most definitely allow for wiggle room in our agenda.  The fact that it is necessary for an American Tourist to be sponsored by a hotel (or other travel institution) makes this a bit difficult.  If we had it to do over, we would have initially booked our stay in the hotel for a longer period of time, obtained our Visas, and then altered the reservation for our actual intended stay.  There are probably even better ways to do this…just be sure to look into all the details before you take-off!

Royal Russia Up Next!

A Portrait of China

16 Jan

I recently saw this painting in a restaurant here in Beijing.  Of all the chaos happening in this picture, can you guess which item or action I haven’t seen yet with my own two eyes???

Answer coming soon….

Only in China

22 Sep

The only way in which my words can possibly complement the images below is by merely explaining verbatim the situation that is occurring in each one.  Not to suggest that you can’t see what it going on in the photos with your own eyes…but even after witnessing these actions with mine, I had a hard time believing it.

Picture This:  Bumper to bumper traffic across 12 lanes in pouring rain on the streets of downtown Beijing.  This makes the work of a New York City garbage man look like a cake walk.

Picture this:  A metal ladder balancing on a plastic bucket turned upside down, resting against live power lines.  Seriously.  You can’t make this up.  Also, look closely…no hard hats or any sort of protective gear.  Where is OSHA when you need them?

From Beijing with Love

31 May

The shopping in Beijing is amazing and at times completely overwhelming.  And believe me – it takes a lot for a shopping excursion to overwhelm me.  In fact, if retail therapy was considered a sport… I would be an Olympic team member.  I love to haggle, and I love the thrill of a bargain.  All of that is to say that I am currently working on A Blonde Buys – a shopping guide to Beijing (and other places in Asia) to include on the blog.

In the meantime, I will include a picture of Brett’s favorite Beijing purchase to date.  It is the most perfectly inappropriate souvenir for friends back home.  Craig, this is just the look for a new dad of a sweet baby girl.

Company Party

8 Apr

Brett and The King of PopI think most Americans would agree that the era of over the top company holiday parties is somewhat a thing of the past.  This is definitely NOT the case here in China!  In fact, the Year End NCGA (Brett’s company) party was one of the most fascinating events I have ever attended.

Our first clue that the soiree was not going to be a typical year end celebration came about 3 weeks prior to the event when Brett was approached by a few staff members and asked to participate in the company wide competition on the night of the party.  I mean – why pay for professional entertainment when the company has an abundance of employees more than willing to humiliate themselves for a laugh?  When Brett accepted the request for him to play the role of Michael Jackson as a part of the corporate team, I knew that I was in for a treat!

The competition proved to be far more intense than we expected.  Brett attended dance practice 3 to 4 times a week, props and costumes were purchased, and dress rehearsals were held.  When the night of the event finally arrived, I couldn’t wait to see “Mr. Jackson” up on the stage.

As a performer, Brett had to arrive many hours earlier  – so I had the unforgettable experience of walking into a room of over 900 extremely excited Chinese people all by my lonesome.  The celebration began almost immediately.  Wine and champagne were passed around and the “Gan Bei’s” commenced.  Gan Bei, the phrase used for toasting in China, literally means, “dry the cup”.  Honestly, I had never shot an entire flute of champagne before.  I would not recommend it.

After an hour or so of shooting drinks that should never be shot, everyone was seated and the show began.  Brett’s performance was legen…wait for it…dary!  He nailed it.  I literally could not take pictures fast enough.  They even won 3rd place (1st place went to an unbeatable group of men dressed as ladies in the Chinese version of a beauty pageant).

A 12-course sit down dinner was served after the show.  Well…it was 12 courses for the executives.  As best I could tell, the other 880 guests were eating some sort of simple rice dish.  I mean at least AIG had the decency to spend government bail out money on a gourmet meal for all of their employees, right?

The night ended with most everyone dancing on some sort of higher surface – a chair, a table, or the stage.  It was a fantastic night – made even more fantastic by the fact that I got to see Brett moon walk across a massive stage and that, once again, I got to be the only blonde in a room of almost 1000 people.

Beijing Tip: At the end of the Chinese calendar year, it is appropriate to give red envelopes with money inside to those who have helped you throughout the year: nannies, doormen, drivers, assistants, etc.  In fact, red envelopes are used for all monetary gifts given for weddings, graduations, and other celebratory events.

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