Fukuyama City, Hiroshima. Business consulting. Translation. Interpreting. Printing. DTP.
Cross-border ramblings



In Japan, and all other countries I’ve lived in, empty beer bottles have to be thrown out with the trash or taken to the store where you bought them. Sometimes there is a deposit on them, but you still need to carry them there. Here in China, all we do is wait until we have a dozen or so, and then call one of the several people wandering the streets below that are collecting bottles, paper, and anything else that they can sell to be recycled. They come to our apartment, count the bottles, weigh the paper, and then pay us for it before taking it with them. It’s a …

Renting a room

Back in March when I decided to have an employee from my Japanese company stay here in Qingdao for three months (August to October), I searched for a suitable room for him to live in. Three months is too long to stay in a hotel, but not long enough to rent a room for a year. So, we eventually settled on a room in a large house about fifteen minutes from here by bus. The room had its own on-suite bathroom, and the common toilet was just next door. The location was good, and the price was reasonable: 1,500 RMB per month, plus 50 RMB a month for water and …

Problems with landlord – Part 1

Here’s why I haven’t had time to update my blog for a while . . . The saga started simply enough, but went on for three weeks, and isn’t really over yet. It may end up in the courts, but for now I just have to wait and see. Since it would be too long to write, let alone read, if I described all the details, I’ll just give you the outline of how I came to move the Chinese office. Not far, just to the room below! On the 2nd August, I went into the office to find that water was flowing from the kitchen sink all the way …

Qingdao Beer Festival

The recent move of our Chinese company to a new office has taken so much time that I haven’t been able to update my blogs, but now that we are settled all will return to normal . . . (I’ll tell you more about the move later.) The Qingdao Beer Festival is being held between the 14th and 29th of August. Here is one of the illuminations advertising the world-famous beer. It is next to the May 4th Square (Wusi Guangchang), which is in front of Qingdao City Hall.

Karaoke in China

From hostess bars . . .  to brothels . . . In Japan, a type of hostess bar where young women serve you drinks and keep you company are often called “snack bars”. This type of establishment is becoming more and more common in China as well. In central Qingdao (Shinan Ward) that has a population of 2,500,000 of which maybe 5,000 are Japanese, there are at least 50 such bars. These are very similar to those found in every town in Japan, and have a similar range in both price and quality. In fact, there is very little difference between those in China and those in Japan. There is …

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