This next post is by a close friend of mine who, with extensive experience in developing markets, has a few tales to tell, by turns revelatory, compelling and oftentimes humorous. An international management consultant, this is his first post in what’s intended as a lite Friday piece on emerging nations:
I love growth markets. I love the buzz, I love the unpredictability that every day brings and I love the feeling that anything can happen. Sure, it brings chaos and there are days when you miss German efficiency, punctual Swiss trains or British politeness, but on balance I’d take growth markets. Every time.
In the Russian outpost of Kaliningrad last week, an example of this made me smile. Picture it: a warm summer’s day and you’re relaxing on the beach; good friends, great food, cold drinks and enjoying your day off. But then, out of nowhere, you hear a loud buzz on the horizon – and what should appear but a hovercraft!?
In a scene straight from a movie, hundreds of sunbathers on the beach in the Kaliningrad region were startled by waves and a loud crash as a Russian Navy hovercraft came ashore. But they were not startled enough to run away, as might have been expected. According to The Moscow Times several witnesses proceeded to capture the landing on their smartphones, whilst marines from the Baltic Fleet came ashore, put up a barricade, and tried to shoo onlookers away from the ship! Once the onlookers realised there was no danger, they carried on enjoying what was a beautiful summer’s day, whilst some curious children even tried to inspect the vessel.
The authorities appeared unconcerned. “It’s normal,” a Baltic Fleet representative said following the incident on Aug. 18, internet portal Kaliningrad.ru reported. The Russian “normallno” being an often used response to cover a wide range of emotions, from indifference, to lacking emotion, to simply, well, ‘normal’ or ‘fine’. Whilst the beach may not be strictly for public use, it isn’t a regular spot for military training either. The Baltic Fleet usually trains at a testing facility several kilometers away.
This is the first in what will be my Friday message rounding up a light-hearted example from growth markets around the world. All to make you smile and get you set for the weekend. Have a good one.