“Not all those that wander are lost.” J.R.R. Tolkien
Apart from my attempt to emulate Phileas Fogg, I have set myself a few other objectives in the next 5 weeks. Of course I will be subjecting clients – existing and prospective – to my latest thinking, with the COAL TRUCK presentation taking centre stage. In Beijing I will also talk Africa and in Sao Paolo preach to the converted on Emerging Markets.
Truth to tell, I get more out of my trips than I think I give – and I give a lot. Aside from the punishing schedule – it will be revealed in this blog (a sort of “Dear Diary” I will share with you, dear Reader!) – I absorb, absorb, absorb. From clients, panelists, fellow speakers, newspapers, taxi drivers (the staple source of the hottest insights about Emerging Markets), newspapers, TV stations, fellow travellers, billboards, chance observations… the list is endless…I will beg, borrow and if pushed steal ideas and thoughts, throw them into my mental liquidizer and serve you with a cocktail that should NEVER mix the ingredients I will.
Somedays I fear the concoction will be bland; others even thin and watery; occasionally I hope it will be spicy; sometimes even amusing; occasionally I hope it will even be insightful! The idea will be to write every day and – with a blend of the above – let you into the strange workings of my strange mind!
So what questions do I want to answer on this trip?
- Is China doing it their way, come what may?
- And what way will that be? And how big will it be?
- Is Taiwan China’s new best friend?
- Can Hong Kong outrun Shanghai?
- Is Singapore the new Geneva?
- Are well-managed resource countries (note the qualification, South Africa!) in for the time of their lives?
- Is Australia – by virtue of its lucky endowment – re-emerging like a phoenix from the Ashes? (I could not resist that one!) Is it no longer languishing in slow lane along with most other developed countries?
- Is Latin America no longer a region that can be generalised about – and usually in unflattering terms? What has changed?
- Does Brazil finally get it? Really GET IT?
- And Chile, Peru and Colombia too?
- What lessons do these resource rich countries – developed and still developing – have for South Africa?
- What do these regions think about the travails of the US and the West in general?
Many new questions will occur to me en route and I will try to answer them as they occur to me.
Tomorrow is a flying day – Jo’burg-Hong Kong and then to Beijing – so you will not hear from me until I get to Beijing at lunchtime on Wednesday. But I will have some “Cathay Pacific” thoughts for you by then…
Meanwhile please ask questions on the Blog and I will endeavour to answer them too.
The Cape Crusader