I was just lamenting how all the foreigners here in China have been on their best behavior lately and I was not able to make any additions to my Ugly Foreigner series. But we now have our first New Zealander to add to this exclusive group. Apparently, the man (we only have his surname of Phillips), who is in his 50s or 60s and recently had heart surgery, was bumped into by a 5-year-old Chinese girl at a hotel swimming pool. The man then picked her up, (by the grandmother’s account, he lifted her over his head) and threw her into the pool. A Chinese man saw the incident and pulled the girl out before she drowned and she appears to have suffered no physical injuries.
But here is the really weird part. According to one report, the man “thought no one was attending to her so he threw her into the water.” How does that even make sense? The fact that he only had to pay the family 20,000 RMB and is leaving the country is a slap on the wrist. How he isn’t up on charges of attempted murder or at least assault is beyond me.
Apparently, because of his age and health issues, his university had already decided not to renew his teaching contract and was going to leave the country in August anyway. But whether he is leaving now because he is being deported or he is simply leaving early of his own choice is not clear.