China Diary:
Winding Down

[Returning to Shanghai] [Spring Festival] [Chinese New Year] [Fulbright Mid-Year Conference] [Back to School] [Back Online] [Into the Heartland] [Ancient Capitals] [Judeo-Christian Holidays] [From Albany to Zurich] [Yellow Mountain] [Loose Ends] [Hello, Debbie ... Goodbye, Debbie] [Southern Capital] [Tropical Tour] [Unwinding] [Farewell Banquets] [Winding Down] [Good Bye, Shanghai]

June 14: MBA Farewell – For dinner, several MBA students from last fall invite me to a Cantonese restaurant (it’s always nice to be invited months after grades are out). They come to my place with a couple of silk paintings for a farewell gift. Again, the conversation eventually drifts to the bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade. Still, we make it together to Paulander’s for some dancing.

June 15: Nordic Welcome – I take the afternoon to do some shopping and missed sight-seeing, and it seems as though the Shanghai summer has arrived with a vengeance. I seek refuge in the former tunnels under People’s Square now serving as a huge shopping mall. For dinner, I meet Gay, my friend from last fall who arrived today. He is in charge of the Change Management program jointly-sponsored with the Norwegian School of Management and will be teaching here these next two weeks. We go to Zapu Street, which was once known as Broadway and used to be Restaurant Row until it was overshadowed by Huang He. Still, it is a throwback to old Shanghai and we enjoy it. Afterward, we go to the Friendship Store and treat ourselves to silk shirts. Gay heads back, and I decide to say my farewells to a number of local joints. Fittingly, I begin at "New York, New York" and end up at "Judy’s, Too" where I make the acquaintance of the infamous Judy herself. Somewhere in-between I pick up a brass Chinese puzzle.

June 16: Nordic Welcome Part II – The Nordic Center hosts a lunch for Gay, and I attend along with other colleagues from the Management School. After, I shop at Yu Yuan and the local antiques bazaar, picking up some more items. In the evening, I replace my eyeglass lenses (I sent my good pair home for replacement after they broke and my backup has scratched and foggy lenses). But they must keep the frames for a while, so I walk around Five Corners blind as a bat and make my way to McDonald’s for dinner. When I pick up my bi-focals a couple of hours later, the lenses do not "line" up.

June 17: Breakfast Talk – I am the speaker at the Second "Crow’s Nest" Breakfast of the American Educator’s Committee at the Shanghai American Club. I talk on "Chinese Minds in U.S. Bodies: Reflections on my Fulbright Year."  The premise is that company culture trumps country culture every time (as long as institutional support and infrastructure are there ...). I think it is well received, and I am interviewed afterward by Far East Asian Review, then on-camera by CNBC. I head home for lunch. In the afternoon, I am driven to Hangzhou to be photographed for a billboard ad that will pitch a kitchen exhaust fan. So it looks as though I'll still be "around" Shanghai for a while. After checking in the same hotel I stayed at last October in Hangzhou, I meet the folks from the photography studio and we all go out for a welcome banquet. In the evening they buy me some new clothes for the shooting session.

June 18: Photo Op – After breakfast, I get my hair trimmed and the rest of me gets a massage to prepare me for the  photography sessions. We go all day, shooting in a kitchen showcase in the morning, have a short delivered lunch, then the studio in the afternoon. Through it all I change outfits, pose, and mug under the lights. When it is all over, we go to a teahouse on West (Xi) Lake (Hu) and talk about the day and the future. We have one more banquet for dinner, then drive back to Shanghai. I am too late for the Waiban farewell party for the Guest House residents but not too late to I go to the Tribesmen Cave.

June 19-20: Weekend – It is hot all day Saturday. I call Francisco to play some basketball in the late afternoon, and Gay joins us after his class ends. After, we get some drinks in Gay’s apartment, then go out for a hot pot dinner. I am pretty exhausted from the past few days, the heat, and the drinking so I fall asleep for a couple of hours. I agree to speak tomorrow morning to Gay’s class about "Business Ethics." Sunday afternoon, I do some grocery shopping (for the last time, I wonder?). It is June’s birthday today so Gay and I take her to a restaurant on Si Ping Road we have not been to before. It turns out to be very good and not too expensive. Not bad for Father’s Day, either.

[Returning to Shanghai] [Spring Festival] [Chinese New Year] [Fulbright Mid-Year Conference] [Back to School] [Back Online] [Into the Heartland] [Ancient Capitals] [Judeo-Christian Holidays] [From Albany to Zurich] [Yellow Mountain] [Loose Ends] [Hello, Debbie ... Goodbye, Debbie] [Southern Capital] [Tropical Tour] [Unwinding] [Farewell Banquets] [Winding Down] [Good Bye, Shanghai]


Copyright 1999 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.