I’m in China now!
Hey guys! So I’m on the train from Hong Kong to Southern China right now. It is a 1 hr 40 min ride from Kowloon to Guangzhou where I will be walking the Canton Fair to find manufacturers for my yoga bags and gym bags.
Yesterday was travel mania. 20 hours from Boston to Hong Kong. Wasn’t that bad though actually. In my 1 hr layover in Chicago, I did the following and you’re gonna think I’m nutso!
Set 1: 20 pushups, 20 tricep dips, 20 burpees
Set 2: 20 pushups (feet on airport chair), 20 tricep dips, 20 burpees
Set 3: 20 push ups (hands on airport chair), 20 tricep dips, 20 burpees
Set 4: 20 pushups (1 foot alternating), 20 tricep dips, 20 burpees
Now onto normal human stuff…
I got some work done and I also did a movie marathon on the plane. I actually really enjoyed Country Strong with Gwenyth Paltrow , Tim McGraw, and Leighton Meester, Gulliver’s Travels with Jack Black, and The Tourist with Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp. Country Strong made me cry. OMG, I never get emotional during movies but it was so good!!! I also bothered my seatmates a ton. Let’s just say I stayed very well hydrated. I’m sure they hated me by the end of the trip.
When I got in, it was straight to work. Met with the CEO of a high end international brand (thanks Whittier College, go Poets!), discussed my trip purpose and my samples. Got to touch and feel my prototypes and make revisions for pre-production round #2. The men’s bags look awesome! Almost no revisions. The women’s gym bags were GORGEOUS! I almost died. The women’s yoga bags have been taken to the next level. Couldn’t be happier. My goal on this trip is to find the right fabrications for the bags so that production can start asap. (Will be taking tons of fabric market trip pics!)
After our meeting, I toured Hong Kong Harbor, a bit of downtown, and ate some gelato while at it. It was quite humid, but not as bad as last summer in Boston, Things weren’t as cheap as I thought they’d be. $1 USD = $7.08 HKD. My gelato was $35. That’s 5 bucks. I couldn’t resist my passion fruit & guava topped with banana & strawberry. (Oops sorry no pic, I ate it way too fast!) It was heavenly.
The city seemed the same to me as any other bustling square. You’ve got your H&M’s, your Coach stores, and your Pradas sprinkled with some foreign chains (in this case, a lot of tea shops). The similarity between last night’s city and New York City turned me off. I didn’t buy anything. I want open street markets and night fairs. Unique finds and bargaining opps. Inspiration in the unlikeliest places. Now, that gets me high. China awaits.
I am approaching Guangzhou now with only 10 minutes left on my train ride. I will be meeting with my friend who owns a shoe company. After we settle in at our hotel we’ll meet with our interpreters and head off to venture the tradeshow. I hope to find manufacturers who will give me a good price for making my bags while staying true to my original designs. My stuff is always a little on the “complicated” side because I love to actually DESIGN. I don’t just want to make another gym bag. It’s gotta be something you’ve never seem before – something that will WOW you. Otherwise, what’s the point of bringing in something boring into the world? That’s where attention to detail is key.
This is my first time traveling overseas by myself and I am quite calm. It’s not as culture shocking as I thought it would be. Well, maybe that’s because I haven’t hit China just yet where there will practically be no English-Speaking. Okay, off the train. It’s Miss Teen Chinatown 2003’s first trip to China! (These little secrets may pop up once in a while…)