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Imi was born and raised in Europe, Hungary. After finishing his school years, he moved to Canada to search for a better life. He lived in Toronto for 13 years and currently resides in Vancouver. He is a romantic at heart with a strong desire to always do the right thing. He would like to give hope to the Chinese and Asian ladies with his story and send a message that love eventually finds everybody.
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Moments of Our Relationship - In Yangchun    

By Imi
1918 Views | 9 Comments | 9/6/2016 1:17:39 PM

Janessa and I had arrived in Yangchun, her hometown, by bus, at around ten in the evening. We walked the short distance from the bus terminal to the hotel. As soon as we checked in, Janessa's phone began to ring.

 

“It was my friend,” she said after hanging up. “He's going to pick us up in ten minutes, here at the hotel. We're going to have a late dinner. Are you hungry?”

 

I'd had some noodles on the way when the bus stopped at a pit stop and would have preferred to take a shower and go to bed, but Janessa's eyes, glittering with excitement, made me say, “Sure, I can eat something.”

 

The guy who picked us up at the hotel was of Janessa's age. They were classmates, Janessa explained, when they were children. They talked in a local dialect. I tried to listen to them, but I didn't understand a single word or tone.

 

My brain grew tired of their chit-chat first, then my eyes followed suit, languidly fighting against the heaviness that alighted on them. I stopped paying attention to them and began to take in the busy activities of the streets, instead.

 

People walked hastily. Cars and mopeds sped toward their destinations. They honked at us most of the time and seemed to drive without any rules. So different, I thought; China was so different from Canada or even from my original country. I felt as if I were in a colony of industrious ants. People had been bustling from the morning to late evening. I felt tired, but their energies were contagious. I felt as if the city of Yangchun or, should I say the village of Yangchun, had splashed my face with a bucket of water to wake me up. It didn't let me be a lazy white man. It welcomed me with the true Chinese spirit, and for some bizarre seconds, I even thought I understood what Janessa and the guy were talking about.

 

“We are here, this is where we're going to have dinner,” said the guy.

 

“I know this place,” said, Janessa. “Imi, we are here.”

 

Hearing my name took the smug smile off my face—what are you thinking? Understanding Chinese? Are you crazy?—and my mind regained the presence of reality. They spoke in English.

 

“Hey, I didn't know you could speak English,” I said to the guy.

 

“Just a little bit,” said he with a grin.

 

I held Janessa's hand proudly when we walked in the restaurant, which was on the main level of an impressive edifice. Two lofty palm trees stood guard over the entrance, adding to the building's imposing structure. Janessa looked very sexy in a black, short dress. My eyes discretely started to take in her shape with appreciating glances, which, of course, filled me up with desire, and I started to think about skipping dinner and going back to the hotel as soon as possible.

 

It was already late—at least, for me—yet the restaurant was full of noisy people, with not just adults but children, too. The grown-ups who had already finished their meals were chattering and smoking, and if the kids weren't sitting, they were loitering among tables and checking the people out with curious eyes.

 

We headed for a big, round table close to the entrance where five people were already sitting and talking. When they saw us coming, the two women of the group left their chairs with grins of joy lightning up their faces and came to welcome us. The two and a half men—yes, one of the men was only a skinny boy—stayed at the table and measured me up with their eyes. The boy did so with timid curiosity and the men with a mixture of intrigue, interest, and a hint of suspicion. I greeted all of them, using up half of my Chinese knowledge with a “Ni hao,” and before the dinner was over, I had the opportunity to use my knowledge of the Chinese language entirely with a “Xie Xie.”

 

Janessa's friends talked in Chinese during dinner. Once in a while, Janessa translated to me that they had been talking about. Between the translations when my mind had been bombarded by the sounds of this enigmaticat least, to melanguage, creating an even bigger and deeper crater of the bitter realization in my head that I would never be able to master Mandarin, I tried to feed the boy who sat next to me. He was eight years old and only twenty-one kilos.

 

When I was his age, I recalled, I was already over thirty kilos. The boy was tall and scrawny, yet looked healthy. He must have inherited his father's genes, who'd gotten my height, but—as Janessa told me after asking the man's wife (her best friend)—he was only fifty kilos. The boy was shy, but as is so often the case with children, their shyness usually gets overrun by curiosity. He mustn’t have seen many white men in his life, if any at all. Now, he had one sitting next to him, and his interest skyrocketed and showed in his eyes.

 

“What's your name?” I asked him. He put a heap of rice in his mouth with his chopsticks, gave me a fleeting glance, then turned his head toward his father. His father was busy talking to the other men, and the protection or the encouraging words that the boy expected from him weren’t there. Disappointed, he started to eyeball his bowl again.

 

“I'm Imi,” I tried it again, placing my right hand on my chest. “What's your name?”

 

For a few seconds, the boy scrupulously dug through the rice in his bowl with his chopsticks, just like an archeologist does for bones in the dirt. When he found his courage in it, he looked up at me and said, “Chi.”

 

“Nice to meet you, Chi. Ni hao ma?”

 

“Hao.” And there he went back to the bowl again, rummaging, perhaps even counting the rice grains in it.

 

I had watched him eating a chicken foot earlier, so I put another one in his bowl. All of a sudden, his chopsticks halted excavating the rice and grabbed the foot.

 

“You know, my mother loves chicken foot, too. And the neck. Do you like the neck?” I asked him, expecting no answer.

 

The boy looked up at me for a second with a piece of chicken toe hanging out of his mouth and then, there he went back to his excavation site. “You just eat and don't mind what I'm chattering about here. I'm just bored a little bit because I don't understand your language. It's my problem, though. Regrettably, I'm not that smart. My brain size doesn't equal with the size of my nose, you know?. . . Do you want some tofu or vegetables, too?” I asked him and landed both in his bowl for digging.

 

“My friend says,” I heard Janessa's voice from the left, “you are very skillful with the chopsticks like an Asian.”

 

“Tell her, thank you,” I said and then whispered into Janessa's ear, “I'm more skilled with my. . . own chopstick. When are we going back to the hotel?”

 

“You are a bad man. I hate you!” she said as her lips started out into a smile, and her cheekbones began to blaze in red.

 

“Chicken or beef, sir?” I heard suddenly with a slight accent. I turned my head into the direction of the voice and saw an unfamiliar face. Too much make-up, too much fake smile.

 

“Sir, chicken or beef?” the red lipstick asked again, and slowly, my sluggish mind realized I was staring at the flight attendant’s lips. I was on a plane, and it was dinner time.

 

“Chicken, please. Thank you!” I said, slightly embarrassed.

 

With my eyes still amply steeped in the images of my newly-found friends in China, I carefully opened the plastic wrapping of the plastic fork. Trying not to disturb my fellow passenger next to me, I stabbed the sticky rice with my fork, which then, as I lifted, broke in half, and one-half dived back into the tray. The other half that remained impaled on my plastic fork still managed to keep the shape of the small tray it had been before.

 

I was in a plastic world again with its fake foods. Disappointed, I fitted the chunk of rice with its other half on the plate and ate the vegetables and fruits only.

 

I missed Chi, the young Chinese boy, and his curious glances. The only glances that I got there, as I was crammed into that small economy seat, were from my fellow contortion artist next to me as he eyeballed my pastry that I hadn't touched.

 

“Would you like it?” I asked him. He gave me an enthusiastic nod, and I gave it to him.

 

What an utter and abrupt change it is!

 

I missed Janessa's friends and family. I missed my girlfriend and her son. I missed the small moments that may have been unimportant to others but meant everything to Janessa and me. I especially missed Janessa's eyes, demurely searching the distance for English words when we walked the streets and talked. When she had found the correct word fluttering by like a rare butterfly that she had scarcely seen before, the pleased smile on her face and the triumph in her voice pulled me closer to fathom her unpretentious spirit. Slowly, I found myself retted in her essence, soaking it up through my skin and beginning to fill up the emptiness within me with unforgettable memories. The various timbres of her laughs. The twinkle in her eyes when I teased her with words or ever probing touches. The feel of her fingertips on my skin. The taste of her kiss. All of them made me long for her ever since our farewells parted us at the airport.

 

When the flight attendant took my tray away, I drank a cup of water and closed my eyes again. In a few minutes, I began to doze off deeper and deeper. And before long, I had met Janessa in my memories once again.

 

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(Showing 1 to 9 of 9) 1
#2016-09-06 13:44:29 by JohnAbbot @JohnAbbot

Imi, you are really taking me back now to my early years experiencing China. For my first two years I spent my time alternating 6 weeks in China and 6 weeks in Canada. This made for a lot of flights back and forth, and during those flights I experienced similar dreams to the one you describe. By similar I mean extremely lifelike, around a variety of events but almost always involving real people I had come to know in China, and all good dreams. I don't remember having a bad one during that period of time.

I don't sleep well on airliners generally, so by the time I was sleeping and dreaming I had fallen asleep out of sheer exhaustion; maybe that's why the dreams came so easily and so frequently.

Your Janessa sounds like a lovely woman, Imi.

"“You are a bad man. I hate you!” she said as her lips started out into a smile, and her cheekbones began to blaze in red."

That sentence alone says so much about her. In those words I see a sense of humour, a sense of adventure, a bit of sauciness mixed with a sense of proper decorum. That is a great combination to to find in a woman, and it tends to lend itself to a partnership that will not get boring and will therefore have a good chance of lasting for life.

I am happy for you because you followed your heart but used your head, and as a result you seem to be in a good relationship with strong promise.

Speaking as one Canadian to another, good on ya, mate. (rock)

#2016-09-07 03:51:53 by Imi5922 @Imi5922

Thank you, John.


Janessa is a woman who is rare amongst women of now. From the start, she hadn't been interested in what I had but who I was. All her friends had kept asking her why she had to choose me, a poor foreign man, almost until the day we got married.


Just an example of how simple of a woman she is: one of her workmates told her after our marriage: "Your husband would never be able to buy you beautiful jewellery or expensive car. You're pretty. You could have easily found a wealthy Chinese man and lived a rich life."


Her answer was simple, even though she got mad at the woman (she doesn't like to fight with anybody), she only said, "I don't want my husband to buy jewellery for me. We can buy plenty of food for ourselves with all that money."


When she told me this, I had to ask her why she had really chosen me. She said, "Most of the time your eyes are sad, tired, and surly, but when you say, 'I love you, baby,' your eyes are tender."


Have I really found a woman who doesn't care about money as long as she can eat and live a simple but happy life? I guess I'll find out when she finally comes to Canada to live with me.

#2016-09-07 15:10:29 by melcyan @melcyan

Imi, I think you have finally got the right one. She loves you for who you are rather than what you have. You and Janessa are a team ( and you accept that her son will always be a part of her, hence also part of your team).

Whatever you have materially, belongs to the team. Your money (no matter how small or large) is your servant. Some western men are imprisoned by the way they view money. Never let that happen to you.

If you can be Janessa's servant and Janessa can be yours, money will never be a major problem. The biggest problem for each of you will be wishing that you could do more for the other.

#2016-09-07 23:50:51 by Juanler @Juanler

@catincoq

China has a lot of women like Jane is traditional, simple, dedication to the love, as long as the men give them enough sense of security and love.

#2016-09-08 01:13:32 by anonymous15473 @anonymous15473

Imi, I am happy to read you have a Chinese woman who loves "you for you" married "you for you" not for what you can give her financially and materialistically, many Chinese women can learn a valuable lesson here! I hope that the female members here read this episode. 

As I am an eternal romantic man I really enjoy reading these blogs and look forward to your next episode. 

I am also very inerested in your dealings with Canadian Immigration when it comes time to sponsor your wife to Canada. The do's and dont's, how you both handle this endeavour. I am Canadian as well so this is why I am very interested in what happens with this situation.

I wish you success

 

Cheers....

#2016-09-09 01:52:39 by QinQL @QinQL

@Imi5922

From this story, I could see your Janessa really fall in love with you. When a chinese woman loves her man much, she would like to have words "hate you"or "bad man" instead of "love you" with shy(as you observed "her lips started out into a smile, and her cheekbones began to blaze in red") and smile in her face full of happiness.  There is a very friendly guy who is Janessa's friend and classmate. From him we could see most of chinese people could speak a little English. A little boy Chi who always enjoys eating "a peace of chicken toe hanging out of his mouth" (rofl).... 


A day, someone who has met me every day from Monday to Friday  for over a year, told me that she met someone else who really looked like me. I am not the only one time to be told so even from my studenthood. You see how common I look like. From inside I am most more common. You all could see I just could write very simple sentences in English to express myself. It's too limited to have blog articles in English for me though I do hope I could do the way that you and Zoe have done. I know I should learn from you all here. Recently I sound have made a good progress in pronunciation in English. And I find that I could read your new story without a help from translator though still there are some new words that I could guess what they would be meaning for according above and follow sentences. I am glad that I could read and understand most of sentences from John's last blog article, too. Anyway thanks for your encouragement. 

#2016-09-09 08:37:39 by Imi5922 @Imi5922

@melcyan

@anonymous15473

 

Thank you both of you for your comments.

 

Melcyan, I think, too, that I got the right one this time. Not because she is pretty or a good woman, but because I feel that I'm a better man because of her.

 

Anonymous15473, I already talked to a lawyer. And since my/our case is not that simple, I'm planning to write a blog about the process, which is going to be a long 12 to 13 months procedure. But I guess it will be longer than that because of our "not that simple case."
The only good thing so far is that the lawyer is Chinese, and he can talk to Janessa directly.    

#2016-09-11 21:39:24 by Imi5922 @Imi5922

@QinQL

 

You are one of the Chinese women who has the qualities that attract us, white men, to Asian women. You are smart, have a beautiful mind, and show these qualities, every time in your comments. So even if you don't start blogging, we'll all know how special you are. You are a woman amongst the female readers here like @melcyan amongst the men. A helping, always trying to find the best solution for both sides in arguments kind of person. And just looking at that by itself, you would be a great blogger. As you mentioned, you can read my and John's blogs without any difficulty. So in my humble opinion, you would be ready to write engaging articles with a feminine touch that would be like refreshing oases in the tirade of blogs and comments against the women's gender. However, I respect your decision and won't bring up this topic in the future.  

#2016-10-04 01:38:53 by anonymous15577 @anonymous15577

Another successful and wonderful love story between a Western man and a Chinese woman; another beautiful China love story added to the millions alike! 

 

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