After wandering around in the blazing hot sun, i needed to take a break and get out of the heat.. preferably somewhere where i can also get a drink. I read about this place called Mao Mao Chong in the guidebook and set out to find it, but as everything has been here in China, it wasn’t so easy. When i arrived at the address listed in the book, there was nothing to be seen. I wandered back and forth down the street, and just as i was about to give up, i noticed this little alley that cut from the street. When i looked down the alley, there didnt appear to really be anything, just a few rusted doors, but at the last minute, i noticed that one of them had “MMC” written next to it.
I stood there hesitantly as there was no indication that this was for sure the right spot, or that the door lead to anything, and if it did, that the place was open. I didnt want to just barge in. As i stood there, someone walked out of the door and started fiddling w/ a trash can. You would think that seeing me standing there, looking confused, he would have acknowledged me in some way, but he proceeded to totally ignore me until i finally waved to him and then pointed questioningly towards the door while saying “Mao Mao Chong?”. He nodded, with zero trace of emotion or caring whether i came in or not, and went on about his duties.
This has been a bit of a bummer while traveling here. While some people have been indeed incredibly nice, welcoming, and helpful… there have been a lot of people that really dont seem to care less about you whatsoever. You would think that if you saw a confused looking foreigner standing a couple yards from the door of your business, that you would at least attempt to usher them in, or help out, or… i dunno… anything?? Now, i am not a novice traveler by any means. I’ve done more traveling than a lot of people and have been to a shitload of countries, so I feel like i have enough experience to say that out of most countries out there, China is definitely one of the more confusing places to travel and also one of the not so welcoming ones. Of course, this is not a blanket statement as I’ve had some *terrific* interactions with people here who have gone above and beyond to be kind and helpful.
Anyways, I wander in and find myself in a wonderful little cocktail bar. There is a huge assortment of liquor here as you would find in any western bar, and the cocktail menu actually has English translations of the drinks. I ordered a couple of cocktails.. a spicy tequila based drink and a Moscow Mule with chilis. Both of them were delicious, and especially as I was practically melting from the heat outside, the ice cold cocktails (and air conditioning) were incredibly nice.
This turned out like a lot of my experiences in China… difficult, confusing, but in the end, rewarding and great.