What you are looking at is a chain restaurant. Like Kentucky Fried Chicken or McDonald's. Only this place sells noodles.
It always made headlines when McDonald's opened a new restaurant in a formerly communist country. They moved into Vietnam just this past February, for example.
But this guy. Mr. Lee is his name. Look at this benevolent kindly face. I trust this man and if I was in the mood for noodles, I'd definitely give his restaurant a try. It didn't occur to me that communist countries would have their own chain restaurants. Just never thought about it.
You can't see in this picture but I could see as I sat sipping my cold coffee: the trees all along the boulevard rustling in a soft breeze. The fashionable young ladies tottering to and fro in their impudent footwear. We were right next to a mall devoted to selling high end cosmetics and jewelry. And there is another glamour mall across the street.
According to the China Economic Review:
Twenty or thirty years ago, most Chinese belonged to a work unit, which took care of their employment, their educational expenses, their medical needs and their retirement. As part of China’s liberalization, most of these benefits were lost.
To be clear, I'm not defending the old communist system. I'm just reporting to you that I don't see any traces of it. I see capitalism bubbling away everywhere and I see people who are catching up but who are not as prosperous as we are. The TINYFCC* series of the blog will be devoted to my search for communism in Communist China. I'm not talking about the lack of voting rights, or the corruption, or the bureaucracy. I'm talking about the workers owning the means of production and "from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs," and so forth.
"This is not your father's Communist China