China can be a very strange place sometimes…
For example today, I was on my lunch break and in the space of about three minutes I got stopped and asked for a hug twice, I thought this was very odd. Well it turns out every so often some of the offices come out to do a team confidence building event where the idea is to go up to random people passing by and ask for a hug. Obviously being China, logic went out the window today and they thought ‘oh look a foreigner who doesn’t understand us, what a great person to try to hug’.
So there I am walking across the square and running towards me is a Chinese man with his arms open wide, seeing the confusion on my face he took the opportunity to embrace me in a hug. I had just about recovered and along comes another person doing the same thing. I turn around confused and all their co-workers are cheering and high fiving them.
Just as I thought it couldn’t get any weirder I turn the corner and a lady runs up to me ‘hello you are so beautiful’ so I said thank you and tried to carry on walking, she then got very close because personal space isn’t a thing in china and tells me I’m pretty. I look around in panic that I’m never going to escape this strange lady and her boyfriend is videoing the interaction! Then this random lady hugs me and once again tells me I’m beautiful and skips off down the road.
So that was what happened to me today, I think I’m still recovering. What a strange lunch break.