Friday, September 14, 2007
Made in China
I've been gone exactly a week and it feels like I have seen and experienced so much. China is really the land of free enterprise. This place feels a lot more like raw capitalism than anything I've ever experienced. Upon arrival in Shanghai within minutes I could have received sexual favours, a Rolex, a foot massage, shoes, purses almost anything imaginable. The city is swarming with people all in business.
There are 10 of us here from USU and another 7 from West Virginia U. After 3 days of galleries and night life we took the slow train to Jingdezhen. It was a 16 hour trip with bunks 3 high and the poorer Chinese sitting in the aisles. It was a fantastic one time experience that I would recommend. Arrival at JDZ at 4 in morning and off to the Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute. We have booked into our digs which once the bugs get worked out will be just fine. My friend, fellow grad and IT specialist Trevor Dunn and I share a room with our own crapper, shower, A/C, fresh water cooler, computer hook up, desks and really all we could ask for. The food in China and especially at JCI has been absolutely delicous. I'll never be able to go to a all you can eat Chinese buffet in America again. One student got sick but he has burned the candle at both ends and I'm sure the immune system was just telling him I need a holiday.
We had a demo from a thrower yesterday that throws 2 tons of porcelain a day. This guy can really move clay. There is a pic of his young wedger that doesn't have a gram of fat on his bod, the thrower talking to his wife on the phone (honey I'm still at work). This place is about division of labour- clay makers, wedgers, throwers, trimmers, tool sharpeners, glazers, firers, packers etc, etc.
Now that I'm here I'll attend to keeping you posted of events in this amazing place.
The pics above are Shanghai night life, Trev in our new digs, the young wedger, the thrower talking on his cell being held by the wedger (John grinning in the background)