Airline: China Southern
Airplane: Airbus A380
23 Nov 2018
The flight from Los Angeles to Guangzhou is 14 hours 30 minutes…
The moment I sit down in my seat on the airplane I know that the seat with her not made for the robust American butt. This was the theme for my entire trip to China. The brackets for the seatbelt are gouging into my hips.
Luckily the nice lady at the front desk upgraded me to an emergency exit, so I had plenty of legroom.
7:00 am (Guangzhou)
I didn’t sleep much on the flight. But we arrive in good spirits as we begin our adventure into . I’m not sure what it is about customs officials, almost no matter the country are going into they stare at you with this Solon and solemn face. No smiles, no blinking at you when they’re looking at you, hardly a word no matter the language.
We all make it through just fine, the whole group of about 40 of us. We are all in In high spirits as we wait for a bus to take us to the hotel. We are all exhausted. Those of us there a little bit smaller manage to get some sleep on the flight. I probably got somewhere in the neighborhood of 40 minutes to an hour of sleep on the 14 1/2 hour flight. It was a rough flight for me because I was extremely uncomfortable. I am very seriously considering upgrading to business class for the flight home. Luckily it is a couple hours faster.
Funny tidbit 1: many of the passengers on the plane had to climb on their seats to get to their bags in the overhead storage. I haven’t even made it to China yet and it feels so strange to see over everyone’s head!
Funny tidbit 2: I could be making this up, but I feel like when I was standing in the isle speaking to my friends that a couple of the stewardesses would brush my biscuits just for fun, because I know they were skinny enough to get by without touching me. Lol
31 October 2018
After a very successful trip to the Canton fair to source products a few of us decide to go out to Beijing Road which is where a humongous amount of shops are lined up for shopping. However there’s another side to the Beijing road and that’s the black market. Men and women alike will come up to you with Laminated pictures of watches purses and travel bags. A group of us goes in, up a seemingly innocent yet strangely steep stairs into a room where all the windows have been covered with blankets to prevent lookers-in.
Will decide if this is not what we’re looking for, and so on our way out we acquired two more people who escort us to a large building with only a few lights on and then we take an elevator up to about the 20th floor. Making our way down a dark and partially lit hall we make a couple turns until finally you found yourself in yet another sealed off from outside view room with a variety of watches bags and purses. I land myself a Rolex submariner for 300 yuan. Which is basically about 40 bucks. It breaks after wearing it for a few hours. But I don’t really care, I really got it as a thing to put up is it goal. I’ll threshold that I know I want to head where if I wanted to I could buy one, a real one.
2 Nov 2018
Today was rather interesting day. I stayed up until about 330 in the morning talking to other people and discussing business. But I needed to get up at 7 AM to catch a train to Shenzhen. I have plugged in my battery back up hours before I went to bed, but when I woke up it was only at 4%. It clearly not charged overnight. I didn’t put plug my phone in because I knew I would have a 100% charged battery back up. This was the first time I was traveling completely alone in China and I was going to meet people that I have only met one time for about 15 minutes in Hong Kong. I manage to find a charge station at the Shenzhen train depot and that saves me because I was down to just If you percent of battery life on my phone and still a multi-our trip back to the hotel in Guangzhou.
Arriving in Guangzhou, I find the nearest taxi scalper because I dint want to wait in a very long lineline, and I know that the ride to the hotel would likely be over 100 yuan due to traffic, and I’ve only got 106 yuan left. Basically you’ve got the people that wait just outside the doors of the train depot and you haggle the price of where you want to go. My guy tonight started at 150. He agreed to 100. We then walk off property to where all the illegal taxis are and the scalper haggles the price with the driver.
We’re an hour in to the ride back to the hotel, and the drivers little brother is snoring in the back seat. There’s so much traffic. I’m going to pay this kid double, but I’ve only got 100 RMB, the rest is in USD. I’ll offer him a $20 bill and see if he takes it. It’s worth about 125 RMB.
4 Nov 2018
I’m finally headed home. After walking miles upon miles every single day looking for potential products I cannot wait to see my wife and daughter. I’ve been gone from them for 3 weeks. And wouldn’t you believe it, I’m sick. I made it through the entire trip without any issue at all, and the day after I visit a factory, I get mild food poisoning.
I learned That customs when leaving China also doesn’t allow liquids through, so I had to dump all my water and then spend 70 RMB to replace it. A few hours into the flight, I go to get my water bottle and find that 1/4 of the water has leaked into my backpack. Licking all of the electroni are isolated from the moisture. On the plane I’ve been just sucking down water like crazy and I’m drinking the last of my airborne. With 7 hours left in the 12.5 hour flight, I’m almost out of Airborne. And there’s and EXTREME amount of coughing going on all around me. For this reason I hate being on planes. That and the level of discomfort. Though I managed to upgrade my seat to the second level of the plane, which has far less people. Actually, it’s my observation that quite a few people have coughs in China.