KTV Time

KTV is the short word for Karaoke here in China, and it’s a verb
they take very seriously.

Yesterday, I finally got around to texting a Chinese girl I met a
few weeks ago while she was working in the KFC across the street from Nankai.
She was very friendly and it was my second time running into her, so she gave
me her number and I promptly forgot to contact her, of course. (I am so bad
about that kind of thing) So I randomly thought of her and sent her a text with
a bogus excuse, something about losing her number haha. Anyways, we texted back
and forth, I found out she’s a student at Tianjin Ligong University and that we
shared a common love for KTV. She invited me out THAT same night to go out with
her friends for the KTV night they had planned. Loving a good spontaneous
adventure, I told Avi that we were heading out in an hour for some good old
Chinese fun.

Around 8pm, we took the bus to the Ligong University stop and met
Cao Ting right there. She is so much tinier than I remembered! But, she’s one
of those bubbly tiny girls who bounce around and always happy, I’m really glad
I finally got around to contacting her. She led us from the bus stop back to
her campus and into the night class that she left to get us, Current Day
Japanese Culture. Walking into that packed lecture was pretty hilarious, the
gasps and silence really made it obvious to the teacher up front, but there was
no helping it. The class didn’t end until 9pm, sorry to be such a nerd, but I
was so relieved to sit in a normal Chinese class again. I noticed that
sometimes our Chinese language teachers start speaking slowly and even repeat
their sentences…it annoys the hell out of me! From the start, Dr. Shepherd
always talked to us in normal speed and made sure the other Chinese teachers
did the same, now I can really see the difference. After the lecture on
Japanese cuisine finished, Cao Ting, Avi, and I went up to the front to talk
with the teacher. Cao Ting is so funny, apparently she likes to skip this class
anyways and the teacher was joking with her about it. She’s too bubbly/sweet to
be mad at. I told him about why I loved his class and he invited us to come
back whenever we want to listen 🙂

Afterwards, we took a walk through campus to go
with Cao Ting to her dorm and wait for roommates. Their campus has the typical
Chinese college hours, therefore, the gates and dorms all lock up at 11pm, no
one gets in or out after that time. That’s when I realized why we were going to
KTV so late….I learned a new Chinese phrase, 通宵 (Tong1Xiao1), it means all-nighter. Ordinary
Chinese people don’t club, but singing the night away until their morning class
is typical, haha. They had class the next day at 8am, and Avi and I had class
at 8:30, not to mention I had the chapter test to look forward to as well. We
thought about it for a moment, but still decided to go to KTV because we haven’t
had that many opportunities to spend time in an all Chinese environment. Living
in the foreigner’s dorm, having classes with foreigners, and being new to town
I was happy to be all around Chinese people again and practicing my language
skills hard core! We took taxis to a very nice, well-decorated KTV, though I
can’t remember the name of it for the life of me.

In total, there were 12 Chinese girls, me, and Avi. We
both alternated between Chinese and American songs, but by the last few hours
it was only American songs…only because Avi and I became live juke boxes. There
are many Amreican songs that they like but can’t sing themselves so we didn’t
mind singing them for them. One thing about Chinese people are that they KTV hard,
there were peanuts, chips, sunflower seeds, beer, wine, cake (it was a person’s
birthday), and tea. When we finally sang “Happy Birthday” everyone got a large
slice of cake and the cake war began. There was cake on the walls and sofas,
not to mention on faces, clothes, and hair. It was hilarious. One negative
about KTV is the sloooow, slow Chinese songs that are so popular here. Without
the fast, American songs to offer breaks I would have been asleep around 1am, I
know. We left at 3am to head back to our dorm and get at least a few hours of
sleep. In the end, I almost fell asleep in class but it was worth it. I had a free
night out (in China the birthday person treats everyone), delicious cake, and
new friends! (And I kind of rocked my test so no worries there~)

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