Today I was having dinner with Hong, previous employer of my company who is also from China. While I was diving deeply into my organic dutch beef burger and heated conversation in Chinese, the waitress handed us a little piece of paper that says “<3 Dames”.
Hong and I meticulously opened the paper, and in it it says:
My first reaction, interestingly, was “Did I just talk too loud?” After all, this neighborhood doesn’t have many Asians and I was afraid I was unintentionally living up the “stereotypical Chinese image in Europe”. We looked around, there was also no “suspicious admirers” within our field of view. So we continue our organic beef feast…
After a while another note comes, which says: Will you consider our offering? Along with it was a bottle of Cabernet Shiraz–exactly the same as what we just ordered. “These guys are good!” I said to Hong.
So we decided to write something back in order to show our gratefulness. I was running out of witty words to say though. So in the end we put: Merci beaucoup! New to the country, would be glad to know a local guide! *email adress*
A few minutes later a reply note came:
Oola-la! It turned out that it was a lovely joke from my colleague Euan and Christos, plus my boss Matt who is the sponsor of all this. Of course we are gonna “spend A LOT of time in den haag”, but hopefully not in the office!
This past week has been a little bit crazy with past due projects and overtime. Christos and Euan joked that they think they should include me to the “du-du club” (euphemism for OT club), which I definitely have no interest in becoming part of other than the bonding aspect.
Many times I am just amazed at this kind of positive energy characters in the office. They are always able to keep the spirit up with their sense of humor, amazing patience and tolerance (to my crazy Photoshop layers), and dilute any kind of stress with a sense of ease and positive thinking. I am feeling lucky that no matter where I go and how dire the office atmosphere is, I am always able to meet some positive energy people to save me from unnecessary self-doubt. Seeing them makes me feel puzzelled by all the tension and selfishness some people have–life is already tough enough, why shouldn’t we walk through it together with an open and light-hearted mind?