Two Weeks to China (One Week Behind the Post)

We have a major case of senioritis floating around at school. It’s hard to believe but we’re roughly two months away from having this thing under our belts. There are only three major items left: Our final “capstone” project at the very end which in theory is supposed to tie in the entire program in one final simulation or case (we don’t know which yet). Our final project/write-up for our current global theme is on the horizon.  And in two weeks, our “international residency” in China will begin.

We received our final overview of that trip this weekend. They have us doing field trips at local businesses, visiting the US consulate, and sitting in on some classes at Fudan University’s School of Management. We have readings and case write-ups due for the professor in China so it’s no laughing matter.  We are also being paired or placed into teams with students in our sister MBA program at the school for group work.  The culture barrier should be pretty interesting to step into first hand.

As you can imagine the excitement is starting to build.  You could feel the excitement jump up a couple of notches yesterday when our travel arrangements were being distributed.  I for one am looking forward to the flying.  Believe it or not the ump-teen hours of getting there and back aren’t bothering me (now).  I managed to secure a first-class round trip ticket by using miles and booked a seat in the upper deck of the 747-400 we’ll be flying on.

Our hotel is a Howard Johnson.  Yea, believe it or not in Shanghai this place is a 5-star hotel (Expedia has it as a 4).  You can look at that several ways: 1) China is hurtin’ for a really nice hotel, or 2) HoJo has managed to compete somewhere in the world.  I am anxiously awaiting to see who or if I have a roommate.  I didn’t splurge on a single room given its cost.  All my friends in class did, or at least had already paired up.  So a roll of the dice may mean I’m solo anyway without the extra coin.

My big travel phobia is getting sick.  Remember our Christmas trip to Quebec?  Well, that has me a little gun-shy.  My friends are telling me to stick to bottled water in the hotel and don’t venture off the beaten path for food.  The food part will be hard for me as us Feary’s have always hungered for adventuresome food. Not so adventuresome (depending on who you are) is the Big Mac.  Supposedly they cost half of what they do here in the US.  Even though I shouldn’t, a Chinese Big Mac is on the list just to say I had one.

As Dad and Vaughna had memorable trips to China, I’ll be checking in before leaving to get a quick list of a place or two to visit.  We surely are missing our weekly conversations with Dad now.  He was jazzed about the trip to China and had a list of things to try.  He’s making the trip with us in spirit and we plan to sneak off for some quiet time in his memory.

I started a Google map for this trip to keep track of places visited, etc.  However as I was creating it I realized that Google isn’t so good with Shanghai addresses as it is here in the states.  So I’m not sure how accurate the map will be but it may be fun figuring it out anyway.

We’ll be checking in best we can through our Facebook site or here on our adventures.  Our departure date is 3/6.  C-ya on the backside…

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