China Diary:
Exchanges


[Leaving Home] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Settling in Shanghai] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Getting to Work] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Becoming Routine] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Western Contacts] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) ["National Day" Trip] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Meeting Folks] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Plenty to Eat] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Downtown] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [South by Southwest] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Socializing] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Dance Fever] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Exchanges] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Business Week] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [North by Northeast] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Computer Crash] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [The Good and the Bad] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Wrapping Up]


Nov. 17: Guest Lecture – My contact person in the Management School asked me to address his cross-cultural management class of juniors. I begin by asking them to explain the three most common Chinese statements: "This is China"; "It is difficult"; and "I’m too busy". This leads into a far-ranging discussion of U.S. culture including Michael Jordan, Monica, and America’s current lost generation. In the afternoon, I go to the Foreign Affairs Office and meet the President and Executive Director of the International Businessman Club of Japan, who also teaches strategic management and has visited Albany as well as other upstate New York cities and universities. There is supposed to be a meteor shower tonight, so I scan the skies after my evening MBA class but it is cloudy. Turns out the shower came earlier than forecasted.

Nov. 19: Scholarly Exchange – Ed, a fellow Fulbrighter in Beijing for the semester, arrives at Fudan to give some lectures. Kathleen and I take him to lunch in the faculty cafeteria, then I bring him to the Management School to informally meet and chat with over a dozen MA students, including some of mine. I then bring him to the Nordic Center where he gives a more formal presentation to about seventy graduate students, including some of my MBA’s. Two of the Center’s staffers take us out to dinner at the Blue Joy. Later that evening, Maurice lets Ed use his bicycle so we can go to the "English Platform" at the graduate student center. Here, a large crowd gathers for a far-ranging discussion of U.S. culture including Michael Jordan, Monica, and America’s current lost generation.

Nov. 20: Stock Exchange – Kathleen takes Ed to campus where he speaks in the Economics Department. I stay to participate in the dumpling party this morning our guest house is sponsoring, but manage to catch up with Ed and some economists for lunch. After, we go to the Shanghai Stock Exchange which is accused of being too speculative but is in reality a virtual financial market which can be coordinated by its computer. China has two official stock markets, the other being in Shenzhen by Hong Kong (each claim to be the largest). We look over the listed companies (heavy government influence) and discuss the two classes of securities (for Chinese citizens and others). Ed and I head back and meet Willem at the shack for dinner. Willem is a Dutchman trying to set up a pharmaceutical distribution in China. After, Ed heads for the airport to catch his plane for Beijing; I go to the train station to head for Suzhou with the Hashers, a carousing group that travels regularly. I meet Jan and Peter outside the train station. Jan is at the Norwegian Consulate and Peter is an Australian teaching English literature at Shanghai Teacher’s College. One hour later we arrive and take the taxi to our hotel. We catch up with other Hashers at the India Bar, Casablanca, and the Venice Bar where I meet Doug from Qingdao where I will be in a couple of weeks.

Nov. 21: Suzhou (Soochow) – This "Garden City, Venice of the East" is on the Grand Canal, which made it into a trading hub and supposedly stopping place for Marco Polo. It is surrounded by a moat, criss-crossed with many canals, has waterfront houses and arched bridges, and contains traditional Chinese gardens. Peter, Jan, and I take in the smallest and largest gardens and wander the shops before heading back to the hotel. At 3:00 p.m., over fifty runners and walkers from several cities gather for the one-hour quick tour. We make our way along canals and through back alleys, returning to the hotel for unlimited beer, chugging ceremonies, and a buffet. Later that night some of us go to a cabaret and finish at the Sicily Bar.

Nov. 22: Hangover Hash – At 10:00 a.m., leftover Hashers gather for another quick tour. This time, we finish at the indoor pool for some refreshments. By mid-afternoon, six of us are on the train for the return ride to Shanghai including Dieter, the Shanghai manager for Volkswagen who will be retiring next year. I make it home in time to meet Yoshi for dinner, after which we go to a local cabaret.


[Leaving Home] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Settling in Shanghai] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Getting to Work] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Becoming Routine] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Western Contacts] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) ["National Day" Trip] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Meeting Folks] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Plenty to Eat] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Downtown] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [South by Southwest] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Socializing] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Dance Fever] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Exchanges] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Business Week] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [North by Northeast] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Computer Crash] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [The Good and the Bad] arrow.jpg (877 bytes) [Wrapping Up]

Rainbow

Copyright 1998 Paul Miesing. All rights reserved. Please do not use without permission unless in the People’s Republic of China which does not enforce intellectual property rights. Revised on January 17, 2001.