Yesterday at 19:00 we had a rather sharp knock on the door: the man who lives in the apartment just below us was somewhat peeved by the noise generated from Arthur’s inter-room shuttle running. He wasn’t particularly friendly in his tone, but I of course apologised and explained that we would do our best to restrain him, I thanked him for communicating with us. Unfortunately there was a return visit just after 20:00, were he explained how he’d just moved in and was a little on edge (his words: 神经衰弱). The second time Zhouzhou answered the door; after a continued aggravated and curt tone, I was on the verge of getting up and going over, but thankfully the “conversation” ended just in time. Not quite sure what to do, or how guilty I should feel. Previously we’ve had neighbours with wailing children and accepted it as a fact of nature, the present situation being slightly different in the sense that there is ostensibly more we can do to stop him running around, but which inevitably leads to Arthur’s cries of protest.

Zhouzhou went to get her vaccination in the nearby community centre this week with Arthur in tow. They have a access lane (this in itself is a long story: it was set up at the request of one of Nana’s friends), but Zhouzhou was told that she wasn’t allowed to use it as there were too many people queuing for vaccination at that time (I would have thought this was an argument for the contrary..). There was a community hotline which Zhouzhou promptly rang up and was told that she should be allowed in the access lane, but the security guard refused to budge on his stance and after a couple of other members of staff came over they oh-so-helpfully suggested that Zhouzhou shouldn’t have brought a toddler with her.. I’m not going to go in to this as this is an extended essay in itself!

Had a pleasant quiet birthday on Wednesday, Zhouzhou thoughtfully picked out 4 new glasses frames for me to choose from, and my initial anxiety that I might not like any of them was promptly dispelled. My present two pairs of glasses that I bought from Kyoto have been with me for nearly a decade now, but 10 years of sweat-corrosion, and deformation from carelessly placing on sofas and beds have meant that I have to tighten the screws on the legs more than once a week. Zhouzhou and I went on on Friday night for Japanese as our own private celebration, about a year since just the two of us have managed to get out for dinner!

Last teaching week! Nana is booked to leave on July 3rd and henceforth Zhouzhou has various work/masters things to do, so looks like I will have a week to spend some quality time with Arthur, ohhhh what to do!?

Living in Beijing. Everyday trivialities, trivial thoughts.