I went to Zhejiang Province over the weekend to inspect an apparel order for a customer. This was a 21,000 pc order with an imminent shipping date for a major US chain. A few days before I was to leave the vendor emailed the customer to tell them that the order was not ready and that only 3500 pcs had been completed. My customer wanted me to go anyway which I did. It is good that I did go because when I arrived I found that only about 300 pcs out of 21,000 had been completed. In other words, there were a lot of problems, the shipping date was going to be pushed out by several weeks and the limited inspection I did conduct on about 80 units revealed a few serious issues. This trip really emphasized the importance of keeping an eye on your vendor and doing in-process inspections. As I usually do when I pass through Shanghai, I had dinner with a group of my old colleagues from APE. I have known these people for 15 years and seeing them is always the highlight of my trip.