In response to some recent comments that the BC is getting too nasty, whingey and ranty (hello, that IS the point, actually) I have decided to give all you whingeing sucks a heartwarming story illustrating human kindness, that will lift your spirit and make you weep with joy for the inherent goodness of humans.
I will then end with a a nasty, whingey rant. So there's something for everyone, really.
Regular BC readers and friends will know that I took a trip to the orient in January this year and drank my way through Vietnam for two weeks (you can read all about my Hanoi hangovers here). Apart from all the drinking and eating, the trip also involved a fairly decent amount of shopping, which almost resulted in me having to sell half my luggage at Hong Kong airport just to get home. Fortunately, the gods of travel smiled upon me and I managed to bluff my way onto the flight without paying for the 20kg excess I was carrying (and that was just on my arse from all the Pho).
Anyway, back in Hanoi. It was the last night of my holiday, and I had gone nuts buying cushion covers and table runners. Cushion covers in Vietnam are the bees-effing-knees - silk and velvet and embroidered and just gorgeous, gorgeous, GORGEOUS. I knew that when I got home my living room would also be the bees-effing-knees. Except that I stupidly left all my purchases in a DVD shop before retiring to my hotel.
"Bugger" was a word that sprang to mind.
I returned the next morning only to find the shop shut. Surprise surprise. I had an hour before I had to catch my plane home, so I enlisted the help of the woman in the shop next door, who I had been teaching random English phrases two days earlier when I bought a lamp (2 kilos), and she helpfully agreed to break into the shop for me and let me in to find my bag. I'm not kidding. I broke in like a gypsy, looked around, came out empty handed and decided another gypsy had probably taken my stuff, and good luck to them.
I left my address and email with my hotel staff and asked them to pass it on to the DVD man if he should know the whereabouts of my gorgeous cushion covers, and fully expected them to file it under B for "bin". Or whatever "bin" is in Vietnamese. After returning home I received one email saying the DVD man did indeed have my cushions and wanted to return them to me but couldn't afford it. No amount of plain english emails from me could make them understand that I would pay for the postage, if they would only tell me how much it was. In the end I just gave up, and figured the DVD man was probably already enjoying kicking back in his gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous loungeroom.
Six months later, when I had forgotten all about it, I received a parcel in the mail from a stranger in Victoria. And inside - my delightful cushions and table runner. Imagine my surprise when I read the card (yes, a CARD! Not just a crap note, but a card, with a painting of birds on it!):
Dear PetStarr,(And no, I'm not being funny, that is his real name).
I was recently in Hanoi, where I visited a DVD shop in the old town, where the proprietors asked me to bring home your shopping - and here it is!
In a state of shock, I rang him up to thank him and offered to pay for the postage, to which he replied "Don't worry about that love. I've travelled all over the world and other people have always helped me out, so just pass the favour on to someone else."
WHAT A COMPLETE AND UTTER LEGEND AND ALL ROUND GOOD HUMAN. It just makes you rethink your plan of machine-gunning the entire human race, doesn't it? I mean, look how great these cushions are.
Shiny and good
And so, a champagne salute to Jock Burns to conclude the feel-good part of this story. And another salute to Hung, the lovely DVD man who kept my stupid shopping for six whole months just to get it back to me. If you're ever in Hanoi, I recommend you buy your DVDs from the shop on Hang Hanh St in the old quarter.
Now, shotgun that champers, sweethearts, because we're about to stalk into the den of the bitch.
A few weeks ago I found a brand spanking new mobile phone in the backseat of a taxi. Having been the victim of mobile theft before, and being a pretty honest and lovely person in general, I took the phone in with me and waited for it to ring so I could find out who owned it and give it back to them.
It rang, and some girl announced that the phone was hers. I announced that I had found it, and wasn't she lucky. She actually didn't seem to give a shit and said she'd pick the phone up the next day. This surprised me, given that if I had left my phone in the back of a taxi and was fortunate enough to get it back, I would probably marry whoever had found it AND bake them a cake AND give them my first born child (not to mention get my arse to their place QUICK to pick it up the same night, before they had a chance to look through all my stuff)(not that I did that)(OK, OK, so I did, whatever).
At any rate, this chick called me at about midday the next day (when she'd rolled her fat, hungover arse out of bed)(yes, I know she was fat because I looked through her mobile photos)(well you would, wouldn't you?)(I AM nice, I swear) and told me she was coming to get her phone. Which was rather inconvenient because I was heading out to lunch. NOT TO WORRY, I said, I am SO considerate and nice that I will wrap your phone up and put it in my letterbox, so you can come by and pick it up whenever you like. "Great" she said, sounding like she'd be more excited if I perhaps left her a piece of cake in the letterbox instead.
Off I went to lunch, feeling like a real good samaritan and extra pleased that I had done as the illustrious Jock Burns of Victoria had commanded - to pass the charity on to another, and keep the good karma circulating throughout the world.
As I drove home, the altruistic nature of my good deed started to dissolve as I began to wonder what present or card would be left in place of the mobile in my letterbox. I thought maybe I'd get a small box of servo choccies, or a handwritten note.
Imagine my surprise when I lifted the lid and saw ABSOLUTELY FUCK ALL. That's right, NOTHING. My good deed had been rewarded with an empty metal box.
Cue rant. WHAT KIND OF PERSON doesn't leave a thank you card in this situation? A card would have been nice, a present even better, but failing both of those - HOW ABOUT JUST A NOTE SAYING THANKS? I don't care what you write it on - the back of a receipt from your wallet, an old parking ticket, a dirty tissue - but for GOD'S SAKE have some MANNERS!
I should have just kept the phone, chanting "What goes around comes around, beeyatch".
Anyway, if anyone knows a fat chick from somewhere in the northern suburbs who likes to do acid and hang out at The Village Tavern and (according to her text messages) has an impossible relationship with someone called Craig who got her phone back from someone who found it in a taxi, remind her that karma will punish her for her lack of manners. Come to think of it, her life as it stands is probably punishment enough.
I still wish I'd kept the phone.