The year is 2013, Mari is desperate for more dramas but after 1 year of nonstop drama watching she’s running out of shows that give her feels!! One day shes on Tumblr and reads a post about friendship. There’s two friends ( a guy and girl) she’s in the bathroom sitting on the toilet and he is outside sitting on the floor leaning against the door. They are both just talking like this is completely normal. The quote say something like “find someone that wants to talk you as much as Li Da ren to Cheng You Qing” Needless to say I was interested. I googled, I followed links. I found a very crappy version, but I hit played and fell in love. Please join me as I go back and watch my favorite drama of all time. I have recommended this to so many people, but there’s still some out there that need to see the light!!
“Hey Li Da Ren, recently I had this feeling. There’s something that’s always against us”
A woman ( our lead Cheng You Qing played by Ariel Lin) is walking through a shoe department chasing someone/something. She’s thinking of how most people are always chasing “something” or in a hurry for find something. The chase continues but then the tables are switched and shes now the one being chased. She narrated that sometimes, there’s thing chase us and no matter how fast we tried to get away, they catch us. The “thing” chasing us is time, She narrates. When you are young, you want time to speed up. A young girl wants to grown up and have her first pair of heels. Now at 29 she finds herself remembering her 17 year old self and her white canvas shoes. She missed those shoes. lol shes actually been daydreaming in a mall this whole time and was trying on a pair of shoes that belonged to a student. The student wants her shoes back and calls her “ayi” ( this meas aunt or auntie and some people don’t want to be called this. Like in Kdramas where a girl freaks out if shes called ahjumma). We find out this was all dream within a dream when she wakes up in her bed.
Cheng You Qing goes back to sleep and we are back in the mall again. This time shes chasing a young girl in a uniform. When she reaches the girl, we see that its 17 year old Cheng You Qing who just smiles at her. She narrates “don’t you have this feeling that 17 was something that happened just last year”. Once again she wakes up in bed.
Fist sign of growing old: You more easily forget the things that happened recently but remember the things of the past more clearly
later that morning Cheng You Qing rushes to work. The elevator is full and there’s this young girl having a very loud phone conversation . Cheng You Qing gives the annoying girl a lecture before exiting the elevator that ends “for your information 30 years old is not old” lol I kind of love her already)
Montage time!! all of Cheng You Qin arriving to work in some impressive clothes and shoes. Serious shoe envy here. She is the District chief of a shoe company and we get to see a bit of her work day. She seems to be very competent but a bit blunt and rubs some of her coworkers the wrong way.
Omg!I love her! all the worrying about aging and not till she opens her e-mails does she realize its her birthday. She calls her mom to ask why no one reminded her and her mom answers, “you told us to stop celebrating after you turned 27) lol! her mom is pretending not to care while shes obviously in a bakery getting a birthday cake.
Cheng You Qin continues to read her emails and her smile widens at one wishing the class president a happy birthday. There’s an old class picture attached to the email and we see her as a 17 year old student.
Flashback to a class room where there’s an election going on. The candidates are Cheng You Qing and a young man. The class seems to be divided in the old boys vs girl story and there’s 1 more girl then boy. This gives the girls the victory every time. So its no surprise to anyone that Cheng You Qing is made class president and she gloatingly shakes the hand of the loser. Flashback over!
Back to the emails, the boy that lost to her (now an older young man) sits on top of a computer monitor talking to her. This is all in her imagination since she’s reading an email he send her. jerk! he is welcoming her to old age, her 30th birthday. She angrily sends a reply back that he may be old at 30 but her life is just beginning at 30. There’s an attachment label ” 50 signs of old age” ( can I help her kill him? ) and its a power point presentation explaining old age to her ( seriously I’m helping her kill him) the list goes as follow
- recent accidents are forgotten buy older incidents are easier to recall
- you keep medicines below your pillow or next your bed
- you have a pooch when you sit
- you wake up early for no reason
- you fall a sleep at 8 o’clock
Cheng You Qing rage quits reading and goes to get coffee. There she finds her coworkers talking about her. She had an issue with one of the women this morning, who happens to be the current girlfriend of Cheng You Qing’s Ex Henry. So female #2 implies that Cheng You Qing is jealous of the younger new girlfriend and that’s why shes picking on her. Ha! idiot girl finally notices Cheng You Qing is listening to everything and both rush our of room. Another girl who also heard the earlier conversation sits and has tea with You Qing. The new comer tells You Qing that no one believes shes jealous then shares a secret with her. She was Henry’s girlfriend before You Qing. So now they have an “ex girlfriend club”
On the way out of work You Qing is once again being chased by time, but takes a break to deal with a rude customer that wants to return some shoes shes obviously already worn. The woman takes a call from her daughter at an airport. Here we see that her daughter is being helped by Li Da Ren ( the list maker from earlier played by Chen Bo Lin ). blah, I don’t like this skip!! so out of this scene we meet Li Da ren at the airport and Henry in the department store when he comes to deal with the annoying woman.
Henry tries to lecture You Qing but she wont have it. He then makes her even angrier but asking her to stop bothering LaLa ( the current young girlfriend). He tells her this “If you don’t change your bad temper, in the future who will love you?” ( seriously going to slap this one, don’t hold me back people!!)
Back in the airport we get a fist look at the type of person Li Da ren is. When he finds the young girl from earlier crying in some seats. Asking only basic questions, and forgetting how rude the girls mother was to him earlier he helps the girl reschedule her flights and get something to eat. later during his lunch break he reads the angry reply to his email form You Qing and cant stop laughing ( me making heart eyes at him) her email ends with the following ” I don’t need your blessing, I’m a gift God bestowed upon this world” hahaha ( I love her!)
back in the department store You Qing gets a call from Li Da Ren. He asks how many symptoms she has and she tells him tells him off. He replies that its only a joke and she points out that there’s actually 51 symptoms and that one is “as you grow older, you loose your sense of humor” He laughs then invites her out for a birthday diner. She declines and then spots Henry giving a pregnant coworker a gift. A sad look crosses her face and she asks Li Da ren “Why did you say you have no possibility of falling of love with me?” He gets this uncomfortable smile and tries to laugh off her question by asking her if this is one of the symptoms and she hangs up on him.
Flashback!! Back to 17 again. The class has another activity up for vote. Its actually for a class banner, that would be on everything they wear. The guys are completely against the girls idea saying its too feminine. They know they can’t win in votes because there’s more girls but they come up with an evil plan. One of them will make a girl fall in love with him and get her to change her vote. Li Da Ren does not seem to agree with this plan but he wont stop them. As he leaves the classroom he sees You Qing and puppy eyed follows her with his eyes ( boy has a crush!!) she however does not even acknowledge him. The boys plan works and You Qing goes on a rampage, trying to figure out which girl betrayed them. Angry You Qing is scary, she goes off on the girl and before you hate her listen. She completely has the right to feel betrayed, since this girl was someone all the girls have been helping for years only asking for loyalty in return.
You Qing walks away crying and we see that Li Da Ren heard the whole conversation. When she gets home we see that he followed her home. She assumes he is there to gloat but he is there to apologize and tell her how he feels about her; but like an idiot 17 year old boy. He freaks out after saying “she’s a great girl” and end by saying “don’t misunderstand I will never fall in love with a girl like you. There’s no possibility” ( stupid boy!!)This was Li Da Ren’s flashback and back in the present he still at the airport. Here a young girl name Maggie introduces herself as the new employee. You can see heart eyes from her aimed at Li Da Ren.
We are back with You Qing rushing into the office. A cab ride and a story from a cabby about having regrets in life have trigger something. You Qing walks up to LaLa and explains to her why she picked on her earlier that day. Yes, her design was beautiful, but not practical, also this has nothing to do with Henry. Men like Henry she says, are no worth her time, she walks away like a boss. ( have I mention shes awesome?) In her office her assistant brings her cake and is upset when You Quin is not happy. The assistant says that her friend (referring to Li Da Ren) is right about her. This triggers another flashback!!!
flashback#3 You Qing’s first day in University. She’s walking down a sidewalk and coming right at her from the other side is Li Da Ren with a sexy smirk ( ok, maybe that’s just my interpretation). She cant hide fast enough. She’s a bit upset that they will be together for the next for years. His response “only the heavens known what God wants” Hers, he probably wants to remind me that “life is full of obstacles” lol
Back in the airport in the present, Li Da Ren is dealing with a man that used to be his teacher, Professor Cao. Maggie asks why he is helping him and we get another flashback… #4… Back to University years. Li Da Ren walks into an office where You Qing is being told to take a complain back against Professor Cao. She refuses listing all the professors wrong doings ( flirting with female students, harassing them, taking some out for coffee). The head of the department (maybe?) tells her she has no proof because no one will testify against a professor. You Qing exits and goes to confront one of the witnesses, the girl admits she backed off because Professor Cao said he would fail her and that class is a required course ( I assume he is the only teacher that teaches this subject? otherwise i don’t get this). Outside the classroom Professor Cao is waiting for You Qing and he mockingly tells her to transfer now because he wont pass her.
Li Da Ren of course heard this and follows her home like a puppy. He tries to cheer her up but again, he says the wrong thing and she storms into her house. He sighs and says ” I can’t possibly love you, possibly can’t” who are you trying to convince Puppy? Back in the airport with the slimy professor, Maggie tell gives him a new flight and tells him he cant have his way. He demands to speak to Li Da ren, but Li Da ren has left and is making plans with You Qin for diner.
You Qing is going to be late for diner because one of her employees has gone into labor and asks her to go into the operating room with her. While this is going on, Puppy Li Da Ren waits for her at the restaurant. Baby is born healthy and You Qing burst into tears when she hold him. She rushes to the restaurant ( this baby must had been born in less then an hour) where Li Da Ren patiently waits holding food in to go bags.
They end up eating their food in a park. She happily eats and he ask ” do you ever wonder why I’m so good to you?” she answers, “in an old life i saved your life and that’s why you are repaying your debt” lol he then gives her a birthday present. Which is two lions with square heads. She does not get the present and he explains that lions with square heads are different and they reminded him of her.
He then ask her why she asked the “I cannot love you” question earlier. She tells him what Henry said to her about her being unlovely. Da Ren just laughs, but she starts listing all her flaws. Da Ren pulls out a postcard and we get a “Da vinci code” plug. He explains to her who created the building in the postcard. He tells her not to worry about being different, to be proud and embrace her distinctive qualities. He then list all her qualities while she smiles happily. Ha! then he says that shes not perfect and this is what she latches on. She demands to know what’s not perfect about her. Now they are both angry and its both funny & frustrating. After some back and forth they make up when she admits that “its really nice to have him in her life”.
Out of nowhere Li Da Ren ask her to make a bet. They must get marry by 35 and the person that’s not married must give the married person a set amount of money. You Qing tells him he does not not know how to gamble, triples the amount and accepts.
The next morning in the airport Maggie finds Li Da Ren and demands payment for her dealing with Professor Cao. They agree he will treat her a meal, and she walks away smiling at him. He narrates, while imagining You Qing, “I’m not aggressive but there’s people that find me attractive. perhaps you are the only one can’t see it.”
I feel like I need to spend a paragraph or two making sure you guys are not turned off by Cheng You Qing. Shes not an easy person to like right away, but if you pay attention there’s usually a reason for her temper. She’s never the attacker, but if she is attacked she will defend herself. I also find that I identified with her a lot. I was about to turn 30 when I first watched this. So I was suffering some of her issues.
You really did not get to see much of Li Da Ren, but trust me he is a sweetheart. So join me in getting to know him.
I know there was a lot of flashbacks but they are really all necessary to establish the friendships. Also many of these side characters will show up again. Including Maggie.. ugh… Maggie.. We will get to her later.