Dinner and a show


Today was our first date night.  Our Ayi, Luo, came over at 5pm.  I was a bit lame and didn’t have anything planned for our first date night.  However,this morning, when I went to go clean the church, a young couple invited us to a dinner and a show.  He said he reserved a table for 10, and they had 2 more seats…
We took the subway and met them at the group at the Huixinxijie Beikou subway stop at the C entrance.  We took a short walk South, then took a left at the first light and kept walking until we found a restaurant called Da Zhai Men.  The group was pretty young, and we were the only couple with children.  One of the couples had a baby due in the next few weeks, though.

One of the guys there was a Chinese Canadian and could speak well.  He asked if I wanted to try turtle.  Who wouldn’t?  It ended up that one of the guys at the table had allergies to shellfish and Oceanic creatures which had hospitalized him before.  Well, the turtle had a shell, but we didn’t think it’d be considered a shellfish… and our Chinese Canadian friend assured us that it was probably a fresh-water turtle.  Nevertheless, we played it safe and passed on the turtle.  Maybe next time Franklin.

In general, the dinner was fantastic food.  Because we were in a big group, we got to try a whole bunch of things, and that was fun.   But, the show was where it got really interesting.  There was a man who came out dancing in what I can only describe as a samurai type costume.  Now and then, he would flick his arm up and down over his face, and the mask he was wearing would change.  It was actually quite amazing.  He did it so quickly.  None of us could figure out where the mask was going or coming from.  And then at the end, he blew out a humongous flame out of his mouth.  We were in the front row.  It was hot.

Then, a lady came out.  She had enormous thighs.  It didn’t take long to figure out why.  She laid down on her back on what looked like a bench press bench.  A man came and put a 10 gallon ceramic jug on her feet which was raised straight up over her body.  She started twirling and rolling it with her feet.  Sometimes she was spinning the jug so fast, it seemed like it would come crashing down into the audience.  Then she carefully put the jug down with her feet.  An MC came out and said a bunch of things, and four young men came out and lifted up an enormous jug.  It looked like a planter that hold trees on city streets.  It was about 4 feet high and about 3 feet in diameter.  The young men strained to move it.  It looked heavy.  The hoisted this jug up on top of the lady’s feet.  She then started rolling and twirling that jug, too.  Then they asked for a volunteer from the audience.  A man of light build in a suit came walking up to the stage.  One of the men told him to go inside the jug and showed him how to sit inside.  After the volunteer crawled in and sat Indian style in the jug, they hoisted up the jug again on to the lady’s feet.  This looked like a lawsuit waiting to happen.  But, my guess is that liability law is not too strong in China.  You might get a sorry, but you’re probably not getting any big triple damage settlements…  Anyway, the lady slowly rotated the jug around on her feet, and we could see the volunteer holding on for dear life inside the jug as he spun around atop this lady’s feet.  After they put the jug away, I went over to try and lift the jug to see if they were just putting on an act to make it look heavy when it wasn’t… It was heavy.  In fact, I think if it would have slipped and landed on you, it could cause severe injury if not death.  Certainly any small animal would be killed.

Finally, a trio of Kung Fu people came out and started doing some wild forms on the stage.  Then two of them left and one guy remained on the stage performing what looked like breathing exercises.  Towards the end of the exercise, one of his teammates brought out what looked like steel bars banging them against each other.  The breathing guy took one of them and after some intense focus, smashed it into his head and the bar shattered into pieces.  Then a second guy started the breathing exercises.  Two of his assistants brought out a pane of glass (1/4" thick), a balloon, and a needle.  We were all trying to guess what was going to happen.  Tenille thought that he was going to put the needle in his arm, then pop the balloon with the needle sticking out of his arm.  The breathing man took the needle between his thumb and fore finger and continued his breathing exercises.  One man held out the balloon, and the other put the glass pane between the balloon and the breathing man.  With a big yell, the breathing man struck the glass with the needle.  The balloon popped.  The glass guy held up the glass and there was a tiny hole in the glass, kind of like when you get a ding in your windshield.  The glass guy came out to the audience for everyone to see and touch the hole.  That was pretty amazing…

We got the brochure, so my guess is that we’re taking all of our visitors to this place.  The show was free, and the dinner came to $20. 



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