We spent most all day researching in preparation for the final presentation. For lunch, Ricky, Chris, Rach and I went on a goose hunt for Subway. Yesterday, we saw one as were driving, so we knew that they exist here. We asked Sally, our guide, to give us directions, so after about 30 minutes we get to the spot she told us to go. Little did we know what she was referring to.
We finally looked up and walla, there was the “subway” … on rails! So walking back we just had to laugh at ourselves. We found a fast-food Chinese restaurant instead. The food was good; the mystery drink they gave us, on the other hand, was not so good, but so it goes.
135 million refrigerators
Later that day we went to Baosteel, the largest steel company in China. This ties right in with our overall case study. We used the analogy of 135 million refrigerators to show the impact that China’s middle-class growth will have as they begin to demand more “basic durable” products such as this.
Once disposable income becomes more available to this growing population, the pressure will be on the steel industry; since steel is the major material used to produce these products. The issue then becomes focused on what is being done to combat the environmental and ecological implications that arise. Many measures are being taken to promote more efficiency and less waste, as we saw at this manufacturer.
Although China has a major pollution problem, I have noticed they are far better at recycling and conserving energy than we are in the U.S. For example, there are recycle bins everywhere, and all the buildings and hotels have timers on the light switches.
At Baosteel, we walked into what felt like a 150-degree oven. It was cool to watch the steel being made (photo right). We watched it as it went through various different chambers and came out looking like lava!
Experiments in laundry and fried foods
Washing clothes in the sink has been getting a little tiring. So our guide took us to this hole in the wall laundry place, literally (photo below).
At first glance we were all a little apprehensive, but the owners were so nice to us. Plus we were a bit desperate for some clean clothes. Their daughter practiced speaking English with us while we were there.
While waiting I bought the best dumplings I have had yet in China (photo right). Not to mention it was only fifty cents. On that note, the food in the restaurants seems to be consistently getting more “experimental”: more slimy, more greasy, and more random surprises inside the fried crust. “Food,” like jellyfish, fried corn and peas with mayo and sprinkles, fried goose liver, fried fat, fried dough, fried turtle, frog and other weird food combinations, only highlight the eating experiences we have had so far.
I think this is when I actually look forward to the stale cereal we often get in the morning. We have had fun with it, though, and trying different foods in these countries has been a good experience for all of us.