The internet at the college has been pretty hit-or-miss lately and it went out completely for about 24 hours. (Ross and I survived it, thank you for your concern.) Indeed, I can hardly believe that we lived most of our lives without the ability to instantly look up anything we were idly curious about, or listen to a song that we half-remembered, or even get nostalgic over a favorite program from childhood. Anyway, the internet has been patchy lately and it hasn't been easy to upload or stay connected. It took me several hours just to upload these photos last night and in the end I couldn't post them so I gave up and went to bed...
That's the news. Hollyhocks. Scads of them all along the road. Mostly red but also pink, coral and white.
Hollyhocks used to grow at the old family farm in Southern Illinois. When mom was a little girl, a hollyhock blossom was a little doll with a beautiful dress.
And I'm sure these little girls, once released from the rigors of standing still for a large family photo, also played with the hollyhocks at the farm, years before mom was born. I like having a connection to my family roots popping up all around me...
"If I can make it there, I'll make it anywhere," goes the song about New York. Think about what it means to "make it" in China, with its huge and growing middle class. Take, for example, the MYDO pie chain. MYDO meat pies are everywhere in Zibo -- in street stalls, in food courts and here at campus. For a few yuan, you can get a hot meat pie, a very handy fast food, in a variety of flavors. Including squid, which we don't recommend, although we like squid in general and we have learned how to say "squid" in Chinese. To digress, the only Chinese we're picking up and remembering is food words, which tells you something.
I got to wondering -- is this Mydo pie chain, founded only nine years ago, all over China? And if so, how many franchise outlets are we talking about? What kind of revenue? According to their website, they are not to be found in every province yet. But one thing I find interesting about the Mydo pie chain is that you can set one up in a tiny space, even a street cart. I hope this means it's a great boot-strap investment for an aspiring entrepreneur. But think of what the total revenue would be for these little pies if there are thousands of outlets selling them.
Then there are Chinese brands and stores you probably haven't heard of. Like, Marisfrolg. This is a high end clothing chain. Or JSEN and RUCK.
About the author:
I blog about my research into Jane Austen and her world, plus a few other interests. Welcome! My earlier posts (prior to June 2017) are about my time as a teacher of ESL in China (just click on "China" in the menu below). More about me here.
© Lona Manning 2023