one day i hope to look back on all of this drama and be able to laugh about it. right now is not that time. on the bus this morning i sat next to xianglian. she was actually taking our vacation seriously for once, asking about how we'd get there and where we'd live. she even got a hotel recommendation from LXL. everything seemed right with the world.

then we arrived at the office and she went to go get her vacation permission slip signed (yeah, here you need permission in order to take your vacation), and the head of admin told her she couldn't use her accrued vacation days because they'd already expired at the end of last month (april).

i was angry: not at xianglian but mad at the system. i wanted to cheer her up. i asked her if she was free tonight. "i'm going out dancing with mahui," she told me. wasn't she out dancing last night? that's why she couldn't meet me to make vacation plans? again tonight? "do you plan on dancing every night," i said half-jokingly but a bit annoyed as well. "just about," she told me. that was the wrong answer.

when a girl goes out of her way not to meet me, or always meet me with her friends, those are a pretty clear signals. but why were we even making vacation plans? all these mixed messages are very confusing. i told her i was angry with her not because our vacation plans got cancelled, but because she never seems to have anytime for me. that's when she dropped the, "we need to have a talk. i have something to tell you" bomb. "we need to talk" is never a good thing. is she planning on dumping me? this girl i'm not even going out with? like i said, super confusing, makes my head spin just thinking about it.

after work instead of following my usual anger route of hiding on the medium bus, i decided to take the large bus instead. i found xianglian already outside, standing by herself. was she waiting for me? i went to go talk with her. everything and anything except for what i really wanted to say. it seemed like she was trying to sit next to me on the bus but for some reason lihui blocked her opportunity. i was pretty quiet during the ride home, but xianglian was the exact opposite, chatting with a few coworkers. i'm always happy to hear people having a good time when i'm miserable!

getting off the bus, i saw xianglian following behind a group of people. she paid no attention to me, either she was having dinner with them or waiting for others to show up. i went home, grabbed my camera, and headed out the door. i went to the park besides the phoenix hotel, an area i'd never been before but only seen it from afar and heard other people talk about it.

the park seemed like it was created just to attract people to buy into the condominium skyscrapers being built around the park. the place was nicely maintained, but you could tell it was new because there was hardly any tall trees. also the nearby construction was creating all sorts of toxic dust blowing into the park. in went to the park headquarter, which was a building filled with scale models of the finished apartment complex and various styles of condos people can buy.

afterwards i walked home, but not before stopping to watch some sales lady put on a trade show by the side of the road. i went to the chengdu fat intestines rice noodles restaurant and had a bowl of their namesake dish (RMB$10). it was okay, a bit too spicy that i was just tasting the hotness instead of the noodles themselves. i tried to be careful, but noodles are messy and i got a few spots on my shirt.

first thing i did when i got home was to do some laundry. i was hoping xianglian would text me but she didn't. i saw that she was online and texted her instead. "are you downloading friends?" i asked. "already finished," she said. a few minutes later she added she was "watching castle." "oh," i replied, didn't know what else to say. i'm still mad at her. today i wish i could be on a plane right now flying back to boston. i've had enough of china. time to go home.