Dear Bloggers,

As most of you know, this week was Mum’s birthday “week”. She seemed to start celebrating on Wednesday, with a cake with some of her team in Tokyo. On her actual birthday despite a huge storm, we made it out for dinner at Mercato with a very good view of the Bund. We had to wear our wellies because there was so much water! As Mum’s birthday treat, we took her to Huzhou for the weekend. We visited the ancient town of Nanxun (canals, bridges & boats etc) and stayed in a brilliant doughnut shaped hotel. We were the only hotel guests that were not Chinese, & the acting GM (from Romania, but not a Dracula) was very keen to show us a model of the hotel site, & lots of secrets places in the hotel. We got to see secret rooms with great views of the light show from a balcony, which went from 7:00pm to 9:30pm. And he made me a cocktail with chocolate sauce, apple & coconut – but it was much too sweet.Some singers from Paraguay sang La Isla Bonita for us, which was a bit surprising. We also saw views across lake Taihu with fishing boats from the outdoor pool which I tried out this morning before breakfast.

Happy Birthday is Shengriquaile in Chinese (Sheng gree kwaii le)

At school this week, I was Star of the week & I got a certificate in assembly. I also got my Mandarin exam results back – I passed (my first ever public, written exam).









From Thomas


  1. Hi Thomas, very cool place you took your mom to celebrate her birthday! I am asking myself how elevators work there 😉
    Take care,
    Rodrigo (From Brazil)


  2. Granny fixit · · Reply

    Glad you had a fantastic water based weekend. What a cool hotel – it reminded me of when your Mum worked at Le Grande Arch – that has a hole through the middle too.
    Great Mandarin exam result Thomas – granny is very proud.
    Look after Mum while Dad is away xx


  3. Congratulations on being star pupil and passing Mandarin. I really love the night picture of the hotel and also the one with the boat, but am a little confused about the picture of the key. What is that about?


    1. Oh yes, sorry. The key picture is the worlds smallest key cutting shop.


  4. Beccacornford & Rachel · · Reply

    Fantastic Thomas! How cool are you passing your mandarin exam. Sorry not been in touch but been working for 11plus, hurray its over! We did it on Thursday!
    The photos are really great, love the sound of the hotel. Wish your mum a very happy birthday! Take care. Rachel & becca


  5. Polly-wolly · · Reply

    Love the photos Thomas, especially the top one with the arch and boat. Did you take them? x x x


    1. Dad took the photo


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