As I was quite active in the blogger scene (if you can call it that) up in Dalian, and had met a few good friends because of it, I was eager to check out what Suzhou had in way of bloggers when I first moved down here two years ago.
At the time the only blog of note really was Chabuduo, written by an Aussie named Matt. Though the scene has grown a bit since, Matt’s blog was, for a long time, the only real window into foreigner-living in Suzhou.
Through the time we both mutually resided in Suzhou Matt and I exchanged several messages to meet up for drinks, but never seemed to get around to it. Then, just over a year ago, he folded shop and returned to Oz – for higher education, of all things!
Well, Chabuduo was back in town recently, fresh off an all-expense paid trip to Hunan for a major Chinese speaking competition (Matt was chosen as the best CSL speaker in Australia, and is a mad 绕口令 master), and we finally were able to meet in person and have that beer – several in fact.
It’s always great to meet folks that you’ve only ever known in an online capacity, and even better when it’s over mid-week afternoon beers. Matt’s a great guy, and has lent further weight to the fact that I’ve never met an Aussie I didn’t like. He’s also inspired me to work harder on my Chinese – seriously, mad skillz.
And for any fans of Matt’s blog that are weeping over the fact that he’s only posted 8 times in the last year, there were mumblings that he may re-fireup the engines and start posting more regularly, with a focus on food, and if his most recent post is any indicator, it should be a tasty read.