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avant-garde_chauvintist wandering through the garden of ideals

Gallery: Spring Festival

CHINA | Friday, 22 Feb 2008 | Photo Gallery

Harbin, Chengdu, Kunming, Lijiang, Dali, Guilin
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A very anti-conservationist article

CHINA | Monday, 18 Feb 2008 | Views [1476] | Comments [1]

A question: what is the point of saving animals that are going extinct?  I know this sounds very chauvinist and not very avant-garde, but seriously...think about it.  We visited two areas of breeding captivity on our trip -- the Siberian Tigers in Harbin ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

About an hour left...

CHINA | Sunday, 17 Feb 2008 | Views [503]

of my eight and a half hour long train ride from Dali to Kunming, watching terraced gardens and mud walled houses, feeling completely content with my decision to stay up all night in order to sleep the whole train ride, I started to hallucinate. ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

Yunnan Province

CHINA | Saturday, 16 Feb 2008 | Views [671]

After I visited Yunnan Province, I realized it is most foreigners favorite place to visit in China.   This information came from an informal poll that I inadvertantly conducted. Basically, when asked where I went on the Spring Festival vacation, my ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

Mario is not hot-headed

CHINA | Thursday, 14 Feb 2008 | Views [440] | Comments [1]

Mario is opinionated. Mario is smart. Mario gets a kick out of arguing. But he is not hot-headed. After traveling with him for about a month and learning a lot about him in the last five that we've been living together in Beijing, I realized these ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

Fighting the landlord

CHINA | Saturday, 9 Feb 2008 | Views [983]

One of the nights we spent with You, we were debating about watching a movie or doing something with the potential of being equally unfulfilling when we discovered we had cards. There is a phenomenon in China of playing cards in the streets and leaving ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

Spicey food and pandas

CHINA | Thursday, 7 Feb 2008 | Views [630] | Comments [1]

A little more planning went into the visit to Chengdu. We were aware of the relatively large size of this city. Mario sniffed out the best couch surfer to stay with for the new year. All I wanted for the Chinese New Year was to be in China. My ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

Welcome to Heilongjiang -- the cool province and a ski paradise

CHINA | Saturday, 2 Feb 2008 | Views [871]

My trip around the China paradises began in the Russian winter. Harbin, renowned for its Ice Festival and ridiculous climate, is closer to Russia than Beijing. Closer to Russia than almost any other place in China. Basically close to the freezing ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

Chairman Mao

CHINA | Thursday, 31 Jan 2008 | Views [973] | Comments [2]

My sister has called him the "pickled historical figure". Some people worship him. Others liken him to Hitler and Stalin. And still others wait in line to see his corpse. In the middle of Tian'anmen Square there is a shrine to Mao Zedong.... Read more >

Tags: Culture

Pop, bang, boom

CHINA | Wednesday, 30 Jan 2008 | Views [490] | Comments [2]

I don't think there is any way to express the way in which Chinese people appreciate fireworks. Rarely a night goes by during which I cannot hear the wonderful pop, BANG, B-O-O-M!!! of the gunpower covered in colorful...stuff outside my window. ... Read more >

Tags: Culture

Locked and loaded?

CHINA | Wednesday, 30 Jan 2008 | Views [559]

I've been preparing, in a very leisurely fashion, for my trip all week long. I packed a long time ago. I've since repacked, adjusted, and packed again. I have my eight shirts and five pairs of pants picked out for Harbin. I have my warm, but less ... Read more >

Tags: Packing & gadgets


CHINA | Monday, 28 Jan 2008 | Views [739] | Comments [2]

The first article I ever wrote for publication was about vitamins. It appeared in a special section of The Daily Reveille when I was a junior in college. The gist of the article was that most vitamins are worthless because of their composition. ... Read more >

Tags: Misadventures

Outside a huge department store...

CHINA | Sunday, 27 Jan 2008 | Views [558]

...I had another conversation about the failings of Communism. I sat in the freezing cold weather anticipating Mario and Ilan's arrival and reading Wild Swans (a book that has been banned in China because it tells the story of a grandmother, mother, ... Read more >

Tags: Friends

Has anyone heard of Confucius?

CHINA | Friday, 25 Jan 2008 | Views [505]

No seriously. Confucius? Anyone? He was pretty bad ass. I mean, we've all heard of him. We all know he was pretty cool. But I don't really think many people look past that. But he was amazing! I vistied the Confucius Temple in Beijing recently.... Read more >

Tags: Sightseeing

Gallery: Snow, Kari, Lauren, Confucius

CHINA | Friday, 25 Jan 2008 | Photo Gallery

More adventures in BJ
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Evaluation of Frank Sun and F & S Education

CHINA | Thursday, 24 Jan 2008 | Views [3619] | Comments [7]

To whom it may concern: I would like to express formally my feelings toward F & S Education, the China Internship Program, and Frank Sun. Firstly, I want to state that my overall experience in China has been wonderful ... Read more >

Tags: Work

Driver's Ed: Beijing Style

CHINA | Thursday, 24 Jan 2008 | Views [570]

We have this stereotype...in America...about Asian drivers.  It's that they're BAD at it.  I don't know if stereotypes are ever justified.  But this one, it seems, has been bred into them from their roots in the Motherland. Quite of few of my students ... Read more >

Tags: Culture

Gallery: Datong

CHINA | Wednesday, 23 Jan 2008 | Photo Gallery

about 500,000 people. all of whom were enthralled by us. famous? you bet!
See all 20 photos >>

Beer and skittles

CHINA | Monday, 21 Jan 2008 | Views [627]

Six hours out of Beijing, more enveloped by pollution, varying abilities of English (the sign outside a local bar had a huge sign screaming "BEER AND SKITTLES"; we laughed uncontrollably), and a whole new cultural experience. I've been ... Read more >

Tags: On the Road

Tis the season...

CHINA | Wednesday, 16 Jan 2008 | Views [649] | Comments [3]

for breaking up. I ran into Kevin in the subway today. I'll unabashedly admit that he is my favorite student. I started excitedly chatting, "Hi! How are you?" He mumbled and bumbled his way through a conversation. Weirdly answering ... Read more >

Tags: Friends

DVDs, coffee, passports and nail clippings

CHINA | Tuesday, 15 Jan 2008 | Views [493]

Life in China is evolving into something like Christmas break. I spend all my time watching movies (I've bought 70 DVDs; I counted), drinking coffee, worrying about when I will get my passport back and cleaning the Beijing funk from beneath my nails.... Read more >

Tags: Relaxation

Yarn and needles

CHINA | Friday, 11 Jan 2008 | Views [590]

Yet another Christmas passed with all my gifts being scarves that I crocheted myself. I decided to make four scarves for four special friends. The scarves are all identical (same stitch, same length, same fringe) except for the colors. With the ... Read more >

Tags: Shopping

Remanded and redacted

CHINA | Thursday, 10 Jan 2008 | Views [1369] | Comments [2]

Yesterday I was all grim because I didn't get a report card this semester. Today, my cheeks are sore from smiling about my role as a teacher. This, as it turns out, must be what it's all about. An email from a student whose English name is Wundt:... Read more >

Tags: Work

Gallery: The Visit :)

CHINA | Wednesday, 9 Jan 2008 | Photo Gallery

When Lauren and Big Gretch came
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ok ok ok

CHINA | Wednesday, 9 Jan 2008 | Views [1390]

Ok. I know I've been a slacker as far as this bit of literary enjoyment is concerned. But if you'll indulge, I'll explain. Lauren and Big Gretch visited and that time was consumed with classes, rearranging classes, and many many touristy things.... Read more >

Tags: Family

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