In praise of odder women

It's been well over a year since we posted some pointers on dating a Chinese lady.

Has that article spawned a whole series of long-term, sweaty relationships, free of picking and sulking? Well then, maybe it is time to think about the big M word.

My rule of thumb is that if you are marrying in Hong Kong, you should marry an odd woman. (Disclaimer: I'm assuming you can tell the difference between "Nice but a bit different" odd, and "Boiling bunny on the stove, barking mad" odd.)

Looking at mixed marriages locally, the lady is often considered odd by her friends and family. Something along the lines of "Well, we always knew she was a bit different, so we weren't that surprised when she married a gweilo!". MrsB definitely falls in the first category. Whether with friends, family or co-workers, she's got used to messages ranging from "You are very direct" to "No local guy will want to marry you". Those last words are music to my hairy gweilo ears.

The problem is when the lady is considered a bit too direct for local men, and not interested in playing the "deh" (Cantonese word) games. Of course, all the subtle nuances of Chinese culture are probably lost on a visiting barbarian anyhow, so that direct communication is just what you're looking for.

Why's that ? You only have to look at the number of "Men are from Mars..." type of books to realise how men and women have a hard enough time communicating, even when both are from the same culture. Add in cultural differences, and there are more opportunities for miscommunication. So, as well as making sure she's odd, better be sure you can at least speak one common language very well.

Is she beautiful ? Well, good for you -- but just reread that previous paragraph. Men's rational thought tends to go out of the window given a bit of attention from a beautiful lady. There was an interesting article about the Japanese war brides who returned to the US with their GI husbands after the Second World War. It noted the difficulties (and divorces) that happened two or three years after the couple got married. While they were unable to speak the same language, they both created their own happy illusion of what the other person was like. As the lady's English got more fluent, all the differences became clear, and they found they didn't really get on that well at all!

So, she's beautiful, fluent in your language, and suitably odd. Better start getting ready for the big day ...