|First hotel that I stayed |
I had prior arrangement to meet Kevin for dinner at 7pm at a restaurant outside our hotel. Since my hurried retreat from the lobby, and with half an hour to spare, I decided to take a stroll outside the hotel alone. It was early fall and the air was crisp and comfortable. There were numerous shops nearby selling knick-knacks, toys, fruits, soybean, small eating shops and shoe shops. I walked about 5 blocks before I made a U-turn and headed back to my hotel. On the way home I was approached by an elderly man on crutches, holding up a cup and thrusting it to me while mumbling for pity and small change. I did not entertain him and keep on walking. He was very persistent and kept on tailed me until I was quite near my hotel. To shake him off, I pulled out a 5 Yuan note and handed to him. Bad bad mistake. In no time, I was swarmed and surrounded by others - old men, ladies and even children, each shouted for handouts, whining why I gave the first guy and not them. Some even cried that they had not eaten for days to get my sympathy. They seem to appear from nowhere and the groups grew bigger and bigger to about 30 odds. They tugged at my sleeves, my shirt and did not let go. I was cornered, could not move an inch and did not know what to do. I shouted out for help in English, and luckily, the bellboys from my hotel heard me and pulled me away while scolding the beggars not to disturb me. I reached my hotel safely but still shaken from the experience. I was told that these beggars came from outstation and they used same tactic on visitors. Phew! What a scary experience.
|I now think twice on giving to beggar|
First trip to China I learnt 3 lessons - extra hotel service, beggars and names calling. I would say it was indeed some sort of embarrassment records!