China has come full-circle in a very short time!
Until quite recently, the vast majority of Chinese did their commuting either by bicycle or public transportation... car ownership was relegated to the wealthy elite. But as China has industrialized and become the source of affordable merchandise for the world's insatiable consumers, the country has also become the world's biggest auto market. People have abandoned their Chinese "Flying Pigeon" bicycles.
But now, according to an interesting article, the comfortably wealthy class in China is reverting to high-end bicycles. Analysts estimate 10 percent growth in the bicycle market, and even higher in the "high-end" market. Chinese consumers are spending thousands - $16,000 for a handmade British Moulton, $38,700 for a limited-edition Colnago. A Chinese financial firm ordered 1000 spendy bikes to give out as year-end bonuses to its employees. (Ah, that my employer could learn something from this!)
Merry Christmas, everybody!