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Delightful Ning Back In Farangland 3 – Wisdom From My Visitor


Initially, things go really well with Ning and me. We seem to continue our delightful holiday mood from the other encounters in Europe and Asia. And even if to others she may seem childish or plain stupid – I enjoy her SE Asian follies very much, her
attention and her temperament.

And I am addicted to her smile! I love to make her smile from far away, because her white teeth look so shiny on her dark face. Of course I can't tell her that I love that contrast, as all the time she wants to be paler. Actually she
is offended that Europe doesn't make her snowy white in a snap.

While I do miss serious intellectual exchange, I am thankful that she is a quiet person who never drowns me in recounts of recent market trips, family encounters or soap opera plots. Sometimes we discover nice differences in thinking. For
example, if after a lazy day you feel sleepy in the evening, this can't be called "tired", according to her: "Tired" is only appropriate after exhausting physical labour. There's also her strict insistence that food
is food, but rice is not food, but rice is rice – just as noodles are noodles, and not food.

With all my Ning delight, I even ponder to drop my independent lifestyle and to – how do you call it – ?


Ning: "How about your big job project, my dear, can you finish soon?"

Pothole: "Oh, you know, I already finished 95 percent! Now I just have to do some bug fixing, polishing, handling – but I don't have to think-think-think and create-create-create anymore."

"Wow, that's SO wonderful for you!"

"Yes, no need to be creative-witty-smart all the time any more. I can forget everything very soon."

"Oh, wonderful my dear. Happy you can relax!"

She smiles most empathetically: She knows nothing more painful than being forced to rotate the brain nerves, and that to make a living.


Out on the terrace, we both spot a spider on the house wall. Suddenly Ning takes off her house shoe and – I quickly look away, but I hear a very energetic FLLLAAAPPPPP!!

"Dear, what are you doing??"

"Kill spider, of course!"

"But why, spiders are people, too, no?"

"NO! Have one spider on the house today, have 200 spiders on the house next week. No need!"

I continue to look away, but as the landlord I have to investigate the overall situation:

"Ehm, now the spider… it sticks on the wall?"


"The spider sticks to your house shoe?"


"Spider fell down then?"

"Dear… – NO!!"

"But where is the dead spider now?"

"OH MY DEAR, I don't know where is dead spider. Spider just go… SOMEWHERE!!!"


Every day we fight who remembers to prepare the bed first. She tries to prepare it around six p.m. Early, she thinks; but if not lucky, I may have been there already and done it at around 5.30.

One late afternoon we run into each other in the sleeping room – both decided to prepare the bed before the other one gets a hand on sheets and pillows. OK, we agree to prepare the bed jointly.

We have two similar bed sheets for the two of us. I put one sheet on her side, one on my side. She exchanges the sheets.

I say: "Why do you put this one over there now? They are absolutely identical."

"No, they are not same, this one looks a bit older. I will take the older one".


4.30 a.m. I wake up in a dark sleeping room. My mouth is dry. In the black, I make out big eyes smiling at me. We hug for a while, then I say "Dear, I go to the home office". If I can't sleep, at least I want to make something
of the time. I am too tired to do something serious, but I can still work on my hobby pictures while listening to the news radio.

Suddenly the office door opens. A ghost in pyjama stumbles in, carrying a bed sheet.


"I sleep here, ok, not so boring."

Does she fear ghosts in the bedroom? Does she fear me cheating on her online?

She lies down on the office carpet. I dash to the living room, bring the sheepskin rug, dash to the sleeping room, bring a pillow, shove it all under her, she smiles half asleep.

"Is the radio a problem for you", I ask?

"Noooo…." She is sound asleep.

Soon I switch from news to jazz, from pictures to boring job-tasks – and I work much better than when alone. I get a lot of stuff done for some hours, while Ning sleeps for some hours. Should we plant the bed in the office?

Later she says: "You know, when you go to the office while I sleep, I can sleep very well. But when I am awake and see you walk to the office, I canNOT sleep. I want to stay near you."


"I am not tired – but I can sleep."

"I am not hungry – but I can eat."

"I know this clearly – but I forgot."

"I woke up already, and now I am no more tired, actually I will get up now." – She falls asleep.

Stickman's thoughts:

So even when outside of their own countries, they still keep up that sleep routine?!