Thursday, May 16, 2013


Last week my husband was out of town, in Calcutta to be precise, with a couple of days in UK tagged on to the end of his trip. Ahead of me, including a weekend lay in store. I was busy making plans of things to do while he was away.

I would fit in a pedicure, tidy some drawers, I had a couple of DVD's lined up and also a couple of books downloaded, oh and I might fit in a bit of shopping! I was going to enjoy this week. The sun was shining and temperatures due to be in mid to high 20's. It would be a relaxing week, the diary was clear. Or so I thought!!!!!

Friday night cocktails on Jason Atherton's roof terrace 5-00pm Debbie's text said. Saturday lunch at new Deli said Fiona's text. Sandra's text was very similar, drinks on terrace of Puli Hotel followed by dinner. My weekend was full. Of course I accepted all three invitations, and so happy I did. Debbie's invite ended with dinner at Paula's apartment, a casual relaxed evening. Good conversation, and as this was the first time I had met Paula, a Boston native, I was delighted to be included.

Saturday lunch was another relaxed affair. Sitting outside enjoying lunch and watching people promenading along the street. This is one of the newest areas opening up in Pudong and a five minute walk from the apartment. Think I could spend a lot of time there this summer.I loved the sun. Not yet humid, so able to enjoy it.

                                     Manage to fit in pedicure on the way home.

On to Sunday. Was picked up at 4-30 driven across the river to pick up my friend Sandra. Her husband was at a meeting and may or may not join us for dinner. Sandra and I have been friends from my first weeks in Shanghai.

We arrived at the terrace bar and I was slightly surprised to see everyone lolling across very wide sofas. I have to admit they were not the most comfortable unless you actually did lie back, but hey that made my drink too far away and crawling to pick up a drink is not really cool. We sat as elegantly as we could, trying to look trendy and cool. Think maybe we were the oldest people there. But no problem, sun was still shining and we were in a beautiful environment, and the conversation was good, as always. A cold glass in hand and all was well with the world.

Dinner was delicious, and although Sandra's husband got stuck in a meeting, it did not detract from our evening. Sorry Melvyn, not to say evening wouldn't have benefited from your company, but we did the best we could!  Back across the river and safely home I was thinking what a great weekend I had had.

It is so great to know that in a strange city I never need to feel alone. After just one year here I have a wonderful group of women who all look out for, and care for each other. We are all experiencing the same things, husbands away, different customs and cultures and at times it can be difficult but knowing there is a friendly face always willing to share a cocktail or two, lol, makes it all seem so much better.

Now when can I get those DVD's watched and the books read?


  1. Glad you are enjoying your time in China. You are such a social animal. I never embraced that sort of lifestyle in Antwerp because ladies who lunch I found too boring. It was all about how important their husbands were, the women there didn't seem to grasp they could be important in their own right not just an appendage on their husband's arm I hated it. Much better for me to have a job with chidren so fulfilling and stimulating. I used to wish I could but never mastered it. Spain suits me and even although I am retired there is always something interesting to do.

  2. Glad you had a good weekend, Jacqui. I certainly enjoyed our Sunday evening, trying hard not to roll around on the sofas! As you say, great to have such a good group of friends, here in Shanghai. It makes all the difference when the menfolk are away.

  3. Avril rest assured these women are all smart intelligent women in their own right, who are happy to work hard to support their husbands, not always as easy for the ladies who lunch as you seem to think. Many of them do charity work therefore putting something back into the community where they live. Perhaps I have just been lucky finding such wonderful women who support each other.

  4. Sounds like you had a wonderful time Jacqui. Not as exotic as living in China, but when we lived in France for 7 years, I found a group of wonderful women - only one was English, but they were all so friendly, kind and helpful.