I am thankful for...

0 visitors Monday, November 24
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Doing business in China

0 visitors Tuesday, November 18
This is an EXCELLENT article about doing business in China and outlines some of the cultural differences between the East and the West that have a huge impact on trade relations:
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Technology is so cool

2 visitors Monday, November 17

Technology is so cool because my sister is sending me texts and pictures from the 10:00 daily morning meeting at Cedarville. Greg and Rachel Vruggink are speaking about China as we speak! As Anna said, "it's funny that we're so interested in what they're saying because we already know the stories they're going to tell... yet we so desperately want to hear them say it!"

Mark, Loren, Greg, Rachel & Tatie.... we miss you guys!
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Following China

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I try to stay updated on the China pulse, but that's often hard to do since my Chinese character reading skills are lacking.  So instead, I attempt to read a number of blogs to stay informed on the country I live in.  Many of them offer an outsider's view on the Middle Kingdom and some of them approach this from a business aspect.  I hope you will enjoy some of them!

In case you were wondering how I stay on top of all these sites, I use Google Reader.  This is a handy dandy tool where you can follow all the blogs you want to read in one place.  Just check this one site to read updates from your favorite blogs.


China Digital Times

All Roads Lead to China: China based news analysis, strategic insights, and advice

Anna's Blog! (my roommate)

China Rises


Black and White Cat

China Law Blog

Laowai Chinese: Tips and strategies for learning to speak Mandarin Chinese

New York Times: China

Pomfret's China

Silicon Hutong

The China Beat

Time China Blog

Wall Street Journal: China
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A random division

2 visitors Tuesday, November 11

Fall is coming to an end and winter is blowing into Beijing. We do mostly the same things as we do during wintertime in the States - pile on the clothes, big coats, and scarves and gloves - although I ride my bike much more often in Beijing. There is one thing, however, that is unique to the remnants of a centrally-planned state: heat. While you might check your pilot light and program your thermostat in the U.S. when the temperatures drop, in Beijing we wait. We wait for the heat to be turned on.

Someone at some time decided that Chang Jiang (the Yangtze River, which means "long river") would be an arbitrarily good dividing line between the "hot" part of China and the "cold" part. I'm not really sure which big men decided that it doesn't get cold enough in southern and western China to warrant heat, but after traveling to parts of China in November without heat I feel that these men were mistaken in their decision! The result is that urban centers north of the line rely on a central heating system and everyone south of the line does without or makes do with electric space heaters. This massive centralized heating system pipes hot water from local heating stations into radiators in Beijing homes and other cities. Not only is the line randomly chosen and not based on average winter temperatures, but the date when the heat goes on and off is also arbitrary. We were told that our heat would come on on November 15 this year, but there was much rejoicing when the pipes in my room were warm tonight!
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