The flight from Newark, N.J. to Beijing was about 15 hours long (7,000-odd miles). I had to figure out how to catch a shuttle bus to Terminal #3 in Bejiing and although the bus I got on went from Terminal #1 to Terminal #4, with no #3 (or #2) in sight, a calm attitude and a dose of luck brought me to the correct connecting flight on Air China.
Actually, many airport personnel speak enough English to be a big help to those of us who are lost. And most people here are exceedingly polite, and nice. That is, except for the one or two pushy, obnoxious Chinese businessmen who manage to be even more rude than their American counterparts. They literally push you out of the way to get ahead in line.
China Airlines provided a comfortable flight -- more civilized than most U.S. flyers. The seats were comfortable, you can watch a video screen on the seatback in front of you with a huge selection of good movies, and you get good, clean food. That flight was about three hours. All told, I have been on an airline for a total of about 20 hours! No complaints though -- I got to Shenzen around 8 pm, not sure what day it is though.
Reed Sinopharm, our hosts for this trip, put us journalists up in the Marco Polo hotel, a few blocks from the exhibition center. The hotel is nice -- I would rate it five stars. Last year, there were maybe six or eight journalists attending the event.
This year, there are just three of us journalists invited to the event. Needless to say, I feel extremely flattered to have been invited. The show itinerary is jam-packed and really interesting. Not yet sure of all the details, but one full day is devoted to a roundtable discussion with Consulate members, the Head of Corporate Intellectual Property from Siemens Ltd., China, and others offering practical, business-focused advice to companies working in China.
Stay tuned for more show news yet to come.....