“Are you a designer?”

On the way to the subway there’s a small street restaurant that I like going to for lunch. When I finish with lunch the other day, the chef asks me if I’m studying in Shenzhen.

I: “No, I’m working here.”
He: “How old are you?”
I: “I’m 25.”
He: “You look much younger than that.”
I (addressing both him and the waitress standing right next to him): “Are you older than me? You two also look a lot younger than 25.”
He: “I’m older than you, she’s younger. Where are you from?”
I: “I’m from Austria.”
He: “Are you a designer?”
I: “I am, how do you know?”
He: “Because you’re from Austria, many people from Austria or Spain are designers.”
I: “Oh really?”
He: “How long have you been living in China?”
I: “A bit more than a year.”
He: “One year!?”
I: “Yes, but I’ve studied Chinese for four years.”
He: “You know, your Mandarin is very authentic. In China every city, every minority has their own dialect or language, your Mandarin is better than many Chinese people’s Mandarin.”
I: “It’s probably the same with Austrians speaking German, we’ll also always have an accent.”

As I get ready to leave, the waitress says: “If you tell us which dishes you like, we can prepare them for you. You just have to tell us a day before and we’ll buy the vegetables you like and prepare a vegetarian dish for you, since you don’t seem to like eating meat that much.”
I: “But I usually don’t know in advance on which days I’ll come here for lunch.”
She: “That doesn’t matter, if you don’t eat it, somebody else will.”
I: “Okay, I’ll think about which dishes I like and will tell you the next time I come here. I have to get going. See you!”
She: “See you!”

Has anyone ever offered to cook your dishes of choice in a restaurant?

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One thought on ““Are you a designer?”

  1. haha, by looking at your profile pic, i would assume you work in OCT? i met a spanish designer one day when he had trouble communicating with a photocopy shop owner


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