Saturday, June 5, 2010

Luxury Goods

Though China has a low cost of living, there are certain goods and services here that only the wealthy can afford.

Currently, golf is only a sport for the upper-class. My uncle designs golf courses for a living and has his own company. He designed this golf training course. Golf lessons can cost around 600 Yuan an hour, which is about $100. Luckily my uncle can be my private instructor for free! We went to this training course on afternoon. We were able to relax and practice in the special VIP lounge.

Golf is much harder than it looks! I kept swinging and missing the ball but in the end I could actually hit the ball with the accurate position.

Another expensive service? Most "extracurricular" activities for young children such as piano and dance lessons. My aunt takes her two little kids to this educational playtime class. It is run by Gymboree and is located in a nice mall.

The classes supposedly teach toddlers motor skills and coordination. They cost 200 Yuan per child each class, which is more than $30.

This place is serious. There is a security guard that stands at the doorway. Then a lady came and pointed some sort of scanner at us (the same one as in this post) to make sure no one is sick. Then we had to take off our shoes, store them in cubbies and put on special socks.

The place slowly filled up with toddlers and babies accompanied by loving mothers or fathers. When the class started, only one parent was allowed in the room with the child and anyone else had to stand outside the classroom.

My little cousins both come here twice a week. I think they have a lot of fun!

Another item I've noticed to be costly is ice cream! This is such a pain for me because I love ice cream. When my friend and I went out one day, the ice cream we bought for dessert cost more than the meal we had just eaten for lunch. I ordered a big bowl of spicy noodles for only 12 yuan and the tiny scoop of ice cream was 15 yuan. It wasn't even a special brand.

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