Monday, July 31, 2006

So much for being back.

So, back in China for a whole 5 days, I've just arrived in Singapore on business.

Flight down was largely uneventful as I managed to restrain the urge to slaughter one of my fellow passengers. Have you noticed how aggressive travelling can make me these days? I definitely think I'm overdoing it...

You clearly don't get a better class of passenger in Business Class - on the first leg of the journey to Hong Kong the guy (my row but fortunately the other side of the plane) spent the first 1.5 hours of the flight continually snorting air in through his nose as if it was blocked. Me: I'd be concerned that everyone else on the plane would be unhappy about me making pig impressions and would disappear to the toilets to sort my nose out but this guy, not a bit of it. Worse, about 10 minutes before we came in to land he started making avery loud gurgling cough which culminiated in him fishing for the air sickness bag, noisily hewing a big lump of phlegm into it and the putting it back in the seat pocket in front of him.

The second flight was much better (quieter at least) and had movies so watched MI-III. I was intrigued to learn, from the plot of the film, that there are secret biological weapons stored in a building in Hengshan Lu in Shanghai. That's where TGI Fridays and the rather nice Mexican Restaurant Zapatas are located. So much for the recent discovery of organo-phosphates in Chinese Spinach, what I want to know is whether they test for Rabbit's Foot in the Margaritas!

Singapore is lovely, as always. It's a nice 29 degrees C so far today (Sunday at home was 38 C ( did say "feels like 43") so this is glorious. Started the day in the open air pool at 6:30am with myna birds and hummingbirds flitting overhead then, disaster struck.

I have a meeting this afternoon with a very senior client. Even though it's very hot in Singapore, this is the kind of meeting where suits would always be required, at least for the first 30 seconds before everyone ditches their jackets but... I have brought my 'small' suit (I have 3 different sizes of suit - Overweight, Obese and pro-wrestler. As I don't wear suits in daily life, I haven't worn this in ages and had assumed it would be OK. Clearly that last few kilos I lost has taken me below the acceptable threshhold. With the trousers on and held and a comfortable degree of tightness there were no less than 6 inches of spare trousers. I kid you not. Even trying jaunty things with a belt to stop a 'funny home videos' moment (the sort where I'm walking down the street and suddenly 'whoops - they're off') isn't going to disguise the fact that I looked like Stan Laurel wearing Oliver Hardy's suit.

Still - at least, it being Singapore, I can go to every British person's last refuge for clothing, Marks and Spencer. The galling thing about this is the I still intend to lose a further 10 kilos which means these clother will then be too big so I'm going to buy a new suit that, in all likelihood, I will wear for a 60 minute meeting this afternoon and the jacket will probably only stay on for the first 60 seconds. I'll remember this if anyone questions my expenses as to whether I really did need that can of Diet Pepsi from the minibar.

Update - who knew Marks and Spencer would be so much more expensive here than in the UK. It's just cost me 300 GBP (550 USD) for a jacket, trousers and a shirt. OK, and some cufflinks because the shirt I liked didn't have buttons. Oh, and a tie because the one I'd brought didn't really suit the shirt but still, 300 GBP for a Marks' suit! I did insist on keeping the jacket on for the duration of the meeting just to get some value-for-money.


JP said...

Ha, you're getting funnier as you get thinner...but you really should have tried the suit on before going to Singapore...that was just silly.

PhilB said...

Hummingbirds in Singapore? I seriously doubt it.

dB said...

I was fooled by the curved beak, nectar sipping and the hovering to feed but some simple research does indicate that it's rather unlikely.


PhilB said...

Sunbird seems an awful lot more likely.