Heading Home

I spent today in Hong Kong snapping photos of glass towers and trying to find the longest escalator in the world. Tomorrow I fly home.

But fear not, the quest is far from over. Now the processing and research begins. I hope to be able to start discussing the apparel industry more in depth: the problems, what is being done, what we can do about them, etc.

I’ve only been able to share a little about my exploits with the factories and the workers and what I think about it all. I felt like I couldn’t post too often about the workers because it could hurt my chances of getting into factories. I do think the posts that I wrote on the workers and factories accurately reflect my thoughts – it’s not like I was holding back. It’s just that if the factories knew I spent weeks getting to know the workers and their lives, they would get nervous.

A new quest begins…

Taking all of this info and experiences and writing a book.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve been approached by a literary agent and we hope to work on a book proposal when I get home. I’ve never worked with an agent, written a book proposal, or even a book for that matter. I hope to write about the hurdles, mistakes, and triumphs of the process.

I’ve been toying around with an outline as the trip has progressed and I think the story of my shirt, pants, underwear, and blue jeans is a complete one. But there is always a chance that I might have to chase down something else I’m wearing. A friend suggested that I visit Italy where one of my designer Italian shirts was made. One problem: I don’t have any fancy Italian shirts. The agent who contacted me thought that it might be interesting to track down something a bit more high-tech such as my wrist watch – Made in Finland.

I’ve even tossed around the idea of going back to Honduras and tracking down Amilcar, who made my t-shirt, which I gave him. (Maybe I’ll take the shirt back. I thought I would be able to find another Tattoo shirt. I haven’t been able to yet and I’ve tried.) The first time I met Amilcar, I was too nervous/shy/guilt-ridden to ask if he could show me where he lives and introduce me to his life. The Honduras portion was much more of a whimsical afterthought than a quest. Going back may allow me to bring the story full circle. But I’m just thinking out loud here. If you have any opinions please share ‘em.

In the next few months I hope to track down the factory and workers who made my favorite pair of shorts – Made in the USA. I’m sure the factory is closed, but I’m sure there’s somebody still around who used to work there and it would be real interesting to talk to them about the people who they lost their job to.

Coming Soon…

My interviews on the World Vision Report. I’ve done two and will do my last one (maybe) this week.

And hopefully, many, many, pieces from this trip published in many, many publications. My second mortgage told me it’s time this trip starts paying for itself.

Movies. An audio slideshow about China and one about the entire trip. I hoped to post the China one before I left, but, as I mentioned in the previous post, my computer is FULL!

jv says:

Wow, Kelsey, I can’t believe your trip’s already over. It’s been a fun read.

A *huge* congrats for the possible book deal. Good work creating an opportunity and then getting the most of out of it!

Can’t wait to get my hands on the finished product …

Matt says:

You should go through Annie’s clothes and underwear and find out what Victoria’s secret really is. Hey..you want readers, then you have to sacrifice some dignity.

Kelsey says:

I heard about VS stuff being made in China. What must the workers think about fancy $50 bras?

Let your voice be heard!