This morning we met in the lobby at 9 a.m. for a meet and greet with the sponsors of the event. For this, we made two trips to the convention through a swarm of local Wuhan people at the Chinese Festival to the Rapeseed Oil booth (aka canola oil). There were people everywhere, and there was no air conditioning, either, so this made for an amazing combination. It honestly felt like a sauna. The weather in Wuhan in the summer is similar to the weather in Phoenix, Arizona, except there is 100% humidity and the temperature in September is just a few degrees below their summer temperatures of 100-plus degrees.
The gentleman at the oil booth was extremely excited that we were there, and he very happily told us about his oil. He also showed us the oldest press in China and then pointed out the 50 years of handwritten paper receipts that he had on display. We took photos of his Rapeseed Oil. As the shots were taken, the locals gathered to see what the Americans were doing. Afterward, we received sample bottles.
Then, we made our way to the noodle booth. Apparently, the Wuhan’s specialty are these hot and dry noodles. I admit I was skeptical at first, I mean how good can these things really be? Well, I was wrong . . . The noodle cups were amazing! One medium size bowl sold for 5 yuan, which converts to about 85 cents. Each bowl of noodles had a small amount of sauce consisting of a combination of peanuts, hoisin and a little chili paste for heat. Because they were so good, I brought some back for the students of CAI.
After the noodle booth we found a pretty unique tea booth and a Middle Eastern sweet and savory crepe place. The crepes were filled with various fruits, like banana and pineapple, and had a slightly crispy texture to them. Interesting and very good!
We left and convinced our driver to take us to Wal-Mart. If you have never been to Wal-Mart overseas, you should visit one. The shopping experience is very different; this store had two floors and used a magnetic conveyor belt that locked carts into place as customers went up to the next level. We saw a lot of recognizable logos with the names in Chinese and unique items that you would not see in the States. After 20 minutes, we finished our shopping and headed back to the hotel.