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Pao Tui 跑腿 in China


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Personal shopper on call, and available to the average family at low cost. Sounds pretty slick. Especially in a pinch. 


I would probably be more tempted to use it for buying dry goods instead of fresh fruit and vegetables. In Kunming these 外卖 guys really get busy when the weather is foul. They are intrepid: like the Pony Express. 


I'v recently been reading about the Mongolian Yam, an amazing messenger system developed under Genghis Khan. Riders could cover 200 or even 300 kilometers a day, delivering intelligence or small items, perhaps documents. A network of relay stations allowed a rider to gallop all out for 20 or 30 kilometers and then hand off the the information or item to another rested rider on another rested horse. The rider also passed over an engraved metal pendant which identified him as being on an important mission from the Khan. The Pax Mongolica ensured these were honored and that the rider was given assistance as needed.  


These 美团外卖 guys could be seen as a modern version of that. (Maybe.) 

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