while 2 of the girls in the office i'm interested in are out on vacation, the girl i used to like but now sort of despise was back from hers. fengya came back with a new outfit, an all black ensemble which featured a peacoat which she ridiculously wore the entire day. i came to work in a new outfit as well, the baby blue shirt i got from chongqing last saturday as well as a pair of faux wool fabric pants. these were the same pants i spent every single day the past 5 days trying to get them altered correctly. so i could only laugh when i saw that the seam along one of the inner thigh area was starting to unravel. it's only noticeable when i sit down, but still, i spent the day afraid those pants would fall apart even more. i'll have to take them back to the tailor tomorrow and get then adjusted. again. can a pair of pants be cursed?

the day went by fast for some reason, even though i had very little work to do. loren was in chongqing for a meeting for most of the day. the scheduling department got a new employee, a rather attractive chinese woman. the engineering department was abuzz with chatter as she made her rounds of introductions. she seems to be in her late 20's or early 30's, so there's a good chance she's married. our eyes caught each other when she first walked into the office; maybe it was the new shirt working it's RMB$100 magic.

i told fengya i wasn't eating dinner at the office. i'm not even sure why i do that. true, it's a formality since she's in charge of the dinner roster, but i hate revealing to her any evidence of my evening plans. next time i'm gone i won't bother telling her.

my original plan was to go home and eat ramen with all those fermented vegetables i have in my fridge. then i thought about going to the sushi place in the mall and trying their braised eel rice combo. i was going to go by myself but decided it'd be better with somebody else so i asked lihui. he said yes. later when loren returned to the office (i didn't think he would), i asked him as well. i also really wanted to ask fengya just because i'm stupid but figured there'd be a good chance she'd decline the offer anyway.

in the late afternoon i was chatting with sunmeng - she has just 9 days left in the office. and i revealed to her some more details of my sudden tepid relationship with fengya, despite the fact that she was very warm to me when i first started working here. she already knew i had a crush on fengya, but i also told her about my weird love triangle involving my frenemy guo. sunmeng in turn revealed her own secret - that she's getting back together with her itching-to-cheat korean boyfriend. i sort of already knew that, but she confirmed it.

so imagine my surprise when later i turned around and saw sunmeng chatting with fengya. you'll recall they used to be good friends, and sunmeng used to hang out in our cubicle area all the time, which was how i got to know her. when she returned to her desk, i messaged her fake hurt that she didn't say hi. she asked if i didn't like her talking with fengya, and told me she wouldn't tell my secret. but actually i do want her to tell fengya my secret. but i couldn't say that. so i just told her i don't know if fengya knows since she probably hates me anyway. what i really want is for sunmeng to spy for me. with just 9 days, i don't know if i have time to turn her into a secret agent.

i wasn't surprised that fengya also skipped the office dinner tonight, leaving work with yangyi and i imagine guo as well. i steeled myself when i saw them getting on the bus, but still felt hurt. i was after all going to have dinner of my own, but in my heart i rather be going with them, had they invited me. they ended up getting off the large bus to take the medium bus back into town (the medium bus has been running return service the past few days).

loren, lihui, and i ended up having a good time on our own though. the sushi restaurant had a buffet special - RMB$79 per person - all you can eat for 2 hours. besides ordering anything off of the menu, we could also pick whatever sushi we wanted from the revolving sushi bar. unfortunately it was in the evening, and the sushi chef wasn't making anymore new sushi since it'd go bad anyway. the best time to come would be for lunch, but business seems slow, since the only customers were us and another table. people here just don't have a habit of eating sushi. i'm actually surprised there's even a sushi restaurant here. the sushi was surprisingly okay give our location. the salmon sashimi - loren and lihui's favorite - came in a huge portion that we ended up not being able to finish. the thing with sushi buffet is you end up eating so much rice, it quickly fills you up. some of the sushi we just ate the fish and left the rice.

afterwards we were stuffed. we went by the gym, where there was a bellydancing class in progress with 3 late middle aged female students. lihui went home, while i walked with loren as far as i could before turning into my apartment.

later in the evening, around 10:00, i got a phone call from yuwei. she wasn't in the office again today, and neither was she yesterday even though i saw her briefly in the morning. she sounded like she was crying, but then sounded sick, with convincing coughing breaks. she told me to tell mr.lee about her condition, since she figured he was angry with her for not being at work for almost 2 weeks. if she really is sick, maybe she can still work from home? and that still doesn't excuse her for not showing for work for most of last week.