A Busy China

[Daily Blog Post #256]

There are exactly three periods during the day that you will see an influx of people all trying to get somewhere fast, and with purpose.

The morning, the evening, and then late at night.

The morning is when everyone is hurriedly trying to get to work. The window is around 7-10 AM, with a saturation mostly concentrated just before 9 AM.

The evening is 6-7 when a majority of people get off work. This is also the category that I am a part of. The subway is quite cramped. Today, I literally could not move at all. I feel bad for all the people I must have accidentally elbowed.

Finally, 9-10 PM. This is where it completely differs from Vancouver, where I live. Past 7 PM, cars are sparse. Here in China, you’ll have a significant amount of overtime workers, arriving home late.

These are the grinders. These are the people in China that are working 12 hours a day, 60 hours a week.

The other day, my taxi driver told me he works from 6-6.

I asked him whether it was 6 AM to 6 PM, and he told me it didn’t matter. He’d somehow fit in 12 hours of available driving time, every day, so he could pay the fee for his taxi license. The fee was 8400 RMB per month (~1300 USD). The 30 minute taxi ride only costed me 50 RMB (~7.7 USD).  I asked him if he took Sundays off. He said he could take every day off if he wanted to, but he needed to pay the bills, so essentially, no.

Still, overall as a country, China is not nearly as productive as America. There is no minimum wage, and no tipping culture. Despite the 60 hour work weeks, it’s difficult, because we only have so much time.

There is a lot of traffic at 9 AM, 6 PM, and 10 PM in China.

Everyone seems to be trying to get somewhere, fast. They only have so much time.


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