Last night, we had a rather weird experience at our favourite sushi restaurant, Haiku by Hatsune..
We arrived early for our dinner reservation, and the restaurant was emptier than usual. Over the course of the next hour and a half, a procession of young Chinese couples arrived – all dressed to the nines – an usual event in itself. One girl wore a long pink taffeta dress, then sat down at the sushi bar; All the guys wore suits and ties. They tumbled out of chauffeur-driven cars, singly or in groups. It appeared that many of the couples knew each other, and yet most of them sat at separate tables, paired off girl & guy.
Another unusual aspect to the evening was that the girls and guys in each couple were actually interacting with each other (in English!) and not with their mobiles! Usually at least one of a couple on a date is clicking away on his/her phone, checking the latest text/email/micro-blog messages. It must have been a first date to yield to putting aside the mobiles in order to make an impression.
As we left we tried to find out what the event/occasion was, but we are still none the wiser. Our possible conclusions:
a) Group first date?
b) Singles club out on date night?
c) American Chinese guys on tour looking for local English-speaking wives?
d) English lessons?
e) Pre-clubbing/post-wedding dinner?
f) Opportunity to dress up?
g) Romantic flash-mob?
We felt a bit spare because we didn’t match the profile – not very young, not at all Chinese, not dressed in formal gear and totally clueless! – It felt as if we were gate-crashing some event and had missed the notice about the dress-code and the purpose of the event……