Beijing Rotary in Morel

Dinner instead of lunch

This time, Beijing Rotary in Morel Restaurant as our club is doing some dinner evenings instead of the usual lunches in Kempinski.
We had a nice crowd, many nationalities with some guests who were interested to listen to our speaker of the evening, Michael.

Michael, our speaker

Michael is a game addict and enthusiast programmer since age 11-12.

After a career in finance & investment industry, in 2003  back to China to join his beloved game industry as Chief Operating Officer of Netease (the second biggest Chinese game company); since then been making games, publishing games and investing into many game companies. Left Netease to start his own company, now being restructured.
Speaker Michael Tong gave us an overview of the video game industry with added spicy controversies and special surprising aspects for people not familiar with the industry, e.g. its size compared to movie and music industry, how people can acquire knowledge from games, and how it is affecting pop culture. For many of the “older” people, a new world – except if they have kids…

Morel’s Restaurant and Café

As always, Chef Renaat did not disappoint. We had a good deal for this great menu, most went for the menu. a very few chose from A La Carte.
Morel’s Dinner menu:

Starter: Fishers Wife Salad
Flemish Vegetable Soup
Main course

Medallion of Beef tenderloin with mushroom sauce
Red Snapper Provençale style

Dessert: Pancakes with Ice cream & Fresh Fruit Salad
WHITE wine: Chile, Luis Felipe Edwards Chardonnay 2015
RED Wine: French, Château de France, Côtes de Bordeaux 2013
Local beer and soft drinks.


Roots and Shoots

Our Tuesday lunch

During the lunch of Tuesday 18 August the Rotary Club of Beijing had the pleasure to learn more about the work of the world-famous environmental NGO, Roots & Shoots, their plans for the future and how Rotarians can get involved.
It was a very interesting speech on environmental issues and in addition it is in full accordance with the latest area of focus of Rotary International.

Rotarians and guests were introduced to the inspiration behind Roots and Shoots – Dr. Jane Goodall’s studies on the chimpanzees of Tanzania – and the importance of generating interest, passion and knowledge amongst the world’s youths to protect and improve our environment.

The Roots and Shoots organization, while highly successful in the long-term, faces short-term challenges in organizing events and undertaking projects due to multiple COVID-19 related restrictions.
The speakers were Issy Dickson and Leia Qianlei from Beijing Roots & Shoots.

In 1994, world renowned primatologist and conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall established the first Roots & Shoots group in China in order to build on her vision of placing power and responsibility for creating solutions for big challenges in the hands of young people.
Roots & Shoots has now more than 25,000 members across every province, municipality and autonomous region in Mainland China, all of whom uphold our three pillars of helping people, animals and the environment. Currently more than ever, protecting the planet and all who live on it is absolutely crucial.
In the words of Dr. Jane Goodall, “Every individual matters, every individual has a role to play, every individual can make a difference.”

Rotary Club of Beijing Welcomes Two New Members

The Rotary Club of Beijing heartily welcomed two new members to its ranks during the lunch at the Kempinski Hotel. New Rotarians, Christine and Ben were inducted into the club after Club President Danny read the responsibilities of Rotary Club members. They also received their official Rotary International pin. The new members helped to read the Four-Way Test.

Beijing Rotary lunch 27 June


Our Tuesday Beijing Rotary lunch 27 June in Kempinski again required me to jump in as Sergeant-at-Arms. Happy to welcome our Rotaractors from the Rotaract Club of Beijing: the outgoing president Peter D. (Romania) and incoming president Marc T. (USA). And Matt S. from Rotaract Club of Honolulu (Hawaii).

(Pics by Celine)


Speaker for our Rotary lunch 27 June was Dr. Joern Joergensen, topic: “A Life without Glasses”.

Dr. Joergensen is the founder, CEO & Medical Director of EuroEyes, has performed over 100,000 surgeries. Dr. Joergensen is recognized as one of the Best Eye Doctor in Germany by <FOCUS>. EuroEyes is the largest clinic group in Germany for Refractive surgery. Myopia has become an epidemic in east Asian countries, especially in China. As the aging of the population grows, more and more people also get presbyopia. EuroEyes started to get many Chinese patients in Germany. There is a big gap in high-end medical services in China. The numbers of myopia and presbyopia patients are growing rapidly. Dr. Joergensen explained the pathological mechanism of myopia and presbyopia. Besides guaranteed high quality of surgery and services, EuroEyes also give back to the community by performing free eye surgeries to the people in need.

Rotary Beijing lunch 20 June


We welcomed Gau for the Rotary Beijing lunch 20 June, our Rotaractor from the Beijing Rotaract West Club the incoming president); also the incoming president Marc  and Deliah, our incoming Project Manager, both from the Beijing Rotaract Club. Visiting Rotarians this time were from from Tel Aviv and Honolulu.
Rotaractor Deliah made a presentation on the upcoming Rotaract Gatsby Gala. Rotaractor Gau made a presentation of the 14th Asia Pacific Rotaract Regional Conference in Phuket (Thailand).

See here the online report:

(Pics by Celine)

China and Chinese Truck Industry

We had as speaker our Rotarian Jens Hamester.

Mr. Jens Hamester held various roles at Mercedes Benz Trucks. He worked with Daimler for more than 30 years, started in Aftersales and then in Pre-Sales for a couple of years, before he assumed the overall project management of Actros MP II in 1998 – 2003. From 2004, Mr. Hamester headed up the advanced engineering of Daimler and from 2006 Entire Vehicle Development Division of Mercedes Benz Trucks. Within that he is also responsible for R&D in Brazil and Turkey, and for the new Atego Product Line project. Before he switched to China, Mr. Hamester was Chief Engineer of Mercedes-Benz Trucks Chassis Engineering. Currently Mr. Hamester is the R&D VP of BFDA (Beijing Foton Daimler Automotive Ltd.).

China is similar to Europe and USA in its land size, but with much more population and less in GDP. Mr. Hamester explained from political ideology to economic improvement to harmonious society and the China dream from 1979 to now. Mr. Hamester analyzed the new trend in the market. There’s a strong increase of the HDT (heavy duty truck) market volume, especially in the last quarter of 2016. Products shift to tractor segment. 6*2 shifts to 6*4 in number of tiers; higher horse power. Mr. Hamester also gave examples of existing JV between Chinese Truck OEM’s and foreign OEM’s.

Rotary Clubs joined for the Rotary Red Lantern Banquet 2017

The Banquet

The three Beijing Rotary Clubs joined for the Rotary Red Lantern Banquet 2017, on Saturday 25 February 2017.
It was supposed to be a ball, a charity, something like that. It became then a “banquet”, unfortunately not as copious as a Chinese full blast banquet (you hate it or you love it).
Setting was the Four Seasons Hotel, the ballroom decoration was pretty nice.
As far as the food was concerned, some kind of high-level Chinese dishes, that means large plates, little content and afterwards need to head for some late night snacks. Some tried to eat enough of the bread. Some (including me) went for the nice red wine, just to get high and forget about food. Our club felt squeezed in a faraway corner.


I am black-listed

I did complain about the logistics: a video shooting that was lousy and useless, and blocked access to the raffle and auction prizes. No reference to the projects we are backing. Lighting positioned too low. Some questionable speech (common for most balls actually). Auctions with little appeal, take too much time and fail to excite the audience, up to the point one simply misses the relevant auction items. And more.
As I have been through a number of balls and other events, I know what it takes and I was unhappy with the issues. Good I did not invite my VIPs as I did for other balls.
Yeah, complaining got me shot down so all my pictures as well as of other “complaining parties” were removed, so, I mostly have the pics I got myself and the ones I selected. You won’t see anything of us in the “official photo gallery” (whatever that means).

Balls are a challenge

One can even question the purpose to organize a ball. It demands a huge investment in volunteering and a semi-military approach and precision, but with often too few returns. One could simply require club members to spit up some money and cancel the ball. More efficient. There are too many balls in Beijing vying for attention and sponsorship. Then paying big bucks to eat a so-so dinner, no dancing, no fun music – next time: no thanks. I even have no idea what our “banquet” brought as benefits.
Well at least we had our Rotaractors acting great as volunteers and nice people at our table.