Tantan’s Albert Janson says...
What she’s like
‘This is obviously an expat girl. I would go as far as to say that, looking at the clothes rack, where you have semi-high heels with those hiking sandals, this is a German, Dutch or American girl.
‘She’s fairly sporty. That’s something that can be seen in the swimming goggles and the dumbbells. What also strikes me is the posters. One has a slogan saying, “Life is a journey, not a destination.” Those, the pictures of the beach and the books – one is called Doing Field Work in China – show she’s adventurous.
‘This is someone who is exploring life, thinking a lot about who she is and the kind of journey she is on.’
What she wants in a guy
‘I think this is a girl who would be keen to go on a few dates, but if there’s no chemistry, the relationship would very quickly die off. She wants to meet someone who has an adventurous spirit. It’s either someone who’s been on a similar journey or who is on the same journey: someone who’s exploring Beijing. She wouldn’t gel with someone who is here for a year on a contract – the type of person who is basically living life the complete expat way. This girl is looking for a bit more. If a guy can establish that he’s on the same path, then it could be something.’
Her idea of a perfect date
‘This would be a date where we meet and we bike together to where we’re having dinner. This is a small place – there’s only Chinese people there – as she’s definitely the type of girl that wants to immerse herself in Chinese life. She wants to be taken somewhere that she would never, ever find if not for this date.
‘After that, we would go to two or three classy bars. We would bike back and I’d drop her off at the door. There might be a kiss, but the main point of the evening is the conversation, talking about stuff that she will show me and stuff that I will show her about China. That’s her dream date.’
‘Your assessment was pretty spot on. I’m an adventurous girl from the US. Since the shoot, I’ve discovered the joys of camping in China. I’m thinking of giving up the apartment for a warm sleeping bag and a new bike!'
Tantan’s Grace Ren says...
What he’s like
‘A foreign guy, for sure. I’m guessing he’s American, mostly based on the Breaking Bad box set there on the shelf. Also on the shelf are two phones, one smartphone and one cheap Nokia, so I guess he’s been here for a pretty long time. Well, that and his apparent Chinese ability, which seems to be at a pretty high level, judging from the Chinese grammar books.
‘Looking at the desk, I’d say he’s a bit of a foodie based on that painting. Maybe he’s into cooking. The other painting is really silly. This guy likes jokes, I can tell. The puzzle and juggling balls are an artsy, fun touch.
‘There by the bed, he has a ukulele, so we might be dealing with a music lover here, maybe even a country music boy! The bed itself – well, it’s just a mattress. He’s a man with a simple, practical style. The pillow with, I assume, the picture of his sisters is sweet, and tells me he’s family-oriented.’
What he wants in a girl
‘Someone who’s really funny and creative.’
His idea of a perfect date
‘He’s American, so we can go on a typical American date. Go out for dinner, go to a movie, whatever. This guy may want to go to a park or see a live show. Maybe Mongolian folk rock band Hanggai! We’d drink beer on the date, but definitely not wine. Have a good conversation, make a lot of jokes. With this guy, I feel like conversation and humour would be important.’
‘Nothing wrong with the guy, but the room is a little depressing. Look at that weird ceiling. Maybe you could put some posters on it. Otherwise, no complaints!’
‘Her assessment of my Chinese ability and the length of time I’ve spent in China is accurate. I am in no way a foodie, though – those paintings are from my sisters. I do love jokes. That is right on point. I want someone who is funny and creative? Duh! So does everyone. Definitely no Mongolian rock.