North East coast, Vietnam

Arriving last night in the sea-side tourist hub of Bai Chay, gateway to the famed Halong Bay, I was surprised to find that my Chinese language was far more useful than my English. As a matter of fact, if I couldn’t speak at least a little Chinese, I would have had to continue wandering the city, quiet on a weekday night, to find a place to sleep, despite the hundreds of hotels. Of course this is northern Vietnam, but it still indicates that increasing degree to which China’s afluent are moving around.

Perhaps this is the way things are going, however. For example, Lenovo, the massive Chinese computer company, owns IBM’s pc division, and it’s all over the news that the company is probably going to buy the European computer company, Packard Bell.

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