Annie’s not convinced China’s going to be ready for the Olympics but she is mightily impressed by the entrepreneurial spirit in the city.
“The Great Wall is quite amazing,” she wrote. “And of course you can’t forget the entrepreneurs and street merchants trying to sell you anything from cold water, cold beer [very important for Australians on tour], food, T-shirts…anything.
“They had just enough English: "Lady you want…?" Pete even managed to bargain down a Mongolian on top of the wall for a half-priced beer!”
It’s positive to see UK companies such as Rosetta Translation and Herbal Health setting up shop in China (and great that so many of these trailblazers are prepared to share their tips on how to make a business work in the Far East) but these stories of grass-roots entrepreneurialism are just as heartening.
Yes, the bloke selling cold beer on the Great Wall is among the most basic of entrepreneurs but in a country where it can be difficult for people to take the plunge and start their own business, it’s good to see. After all, a community’s got to start somewhere.