Mahjong… Our Decadent Soirée…

We had a… glamorous

Mahjong“… Soirée

The other evening

The settingconsisted of two low tables with “vert et noir” tablecloths… with a touch of gold

Two candelebras… with the flicker… of a hundred candles

The only light in the… lovely salon

Enchanting soft musicplaying

Wearing… my alluring, dramatic, “noir” evening gown, with soft ostrich feathers

We moved from one table to the other… making small talk with… our  gracious gallant guests… the elegantly dressed ladies and cultured gentlemen… one of whom was dashing… 

After… a light dinner… “saumon fumébites… tiny spears of “aspèrge“… graceful glasses of champagne silver trays of delicate gourmet canapés…and petits fours… “marrons et chocolat“…

We commenced… with our Mahjong evening

“The game of a hundred intelligence’s”…

Having… just acquired this most sophisticated, enigmatic, and exotic of games… from a friend arriving from London… we were very excited to start with the game

Drinking in the atmosphere of our “Salon“…

I was… for a moment transported… into one of the elegant and decadentsmoke-filled Photo by ALAMYsalons of Shanghai in the nineteen-twenties … Asian exotic women wearing splendid gowns of silk and brocade… smoking from long cigarette holders men in their handsome clothes… fortune seekers… bohemiansforeign ladies of societylooking for romance in exotic parlours… in a foreign land… all with a common passion

Playing this centuries old gameMahjong…which consisted of soft shining ivory tilespainted with miniatures of… birds, bamboos, dragons, and other figures

I was totally… spellbound

Fascinated… by the decadent scene around me…

Heady…

More Champagne

Darling…?”

The man I love… asked…

Bringing me vividly back to reality

Our guests… were enjoying drinking, chatting, and laughingwaiting for the excitement to begin

Má jiàng“… in Mandarin

Was thought to be invented by… Confucius… the Chinese philosopher around 500 B.C…. 

In fact… it originated in the Taiping era (19th century) … which was several centuries after the death of the great man

Having travelled to the Western world in 1895… the game became very popular in London and New York in the 1920s

Mahjongseems to have developed from existing Chinese card and domino games around 1850.  It is believed to have been based on a Chinese card game called Mǎdiào in the early Ming dynasty

A nobleman living in Shanghai… is thought to have created the game between 1870-1875 another theory is that two brothers in the city of Níngpō had created Mahjong in 1850

HoweverMahjong was banned in its Chinese homeland in 1949 in the People’s Republic fortunately… it was revived after the cultural revolutionbecoming a favourite pastime in ChinaHong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, and most recently… in Japan

The fascinating game travelled from Peking… to “London Society“… where it became a favourite within intellectual, aristocratic, and diplomatic circles.

Today Mahjong… is highly regarded… and… “is as respected as the quintessential British gentleman“…

Our Soirée… was… supremely successful

Mahjong… has become a…

Passion for us… and our guests

We’ve become

Addicted to the game… in the…

Nicest

Possible

Way…

a.

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