Taking the GRE in China

Wow. It’s been so long. I feel like I haven’t seen you in forever! I’m sorry I’ve been out of touch – work has been busy. No, I haven’t been avoiding you. OK, so maybe it wasn’t just work. But I really have been busy. Let me explain. At the beginning of the summer I … Continue reading

A Chinese Santa

Christmas is the holiday in my world. I’m on my way home to spend it with the fam like we have almost every year before – with the fireplace, stockings, Church run, big dinner and of course, tree. I wouldn’t have it any other way. There have been times, however, when we’ve diverted from the … Continue reading

China and Osama’s Death

bin Laden on front page of Chinese newspaper, taken from AP

On 9/11, I encountered resentment towards the US from some of my Mexican peers at the international high school in Mexico City. They whispered comments behind my teachers’ backs in true pre-pubescent form to which I retorted equally rehearsed jibes. Although I can’t say what Chinese high schoolers thought of the attacks at the time, … Continue reading

The Beijing Bubble

After reading international and domestic media’s interpretations of this past month’s events in China, I am confused. Yes, Beijing does sometimes feel like a bubble centered on Sanlitun (a popular westerner hangout), and I’ve never broached controversial topics with Chinese friends or coworkers out of respect. And yes, I’ve missed historical events unfolding around me … Continue reading


This past week we had “three” days off for Tomb Sweeping Festival, or Qingming. I say “three” because in China, this means you get Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday off, but have to work Saturday. Unfortunate, but I got through it and headed out on Sunday morning to an old Ming village called Cuandixia. Similar to … Continue reading

Hooked on Wangba 网吧

While studying abroad in Madrid, a nearby internet café offered my only connection to family and friends back west. Although it provided brief (it closed at 9:00, my senora finished dinner at 8:30) and hazy (it was the sketchiest internet connection) interactions, I frequented the dingy room consistently enough that by the time I left, … Continue reading

Shanghai, Suzhou, Hangzhou

For Chinese New Year, the roomies and I joined 700 million travelers throughout China. We headed south to Shanghai, Suzhou and Hangzhou, spending a night in each city before returning to Shanghai for the Superbowl. The trip was everything I could have imagined: canal rides through Suzhou’s gardens, strolls along Shanghai’s Bund, and bike rides … Continue reading

Third Culture Kid Living in the “Third World”

Upon discovering the most recent Harry Potter premiere date, I spread the word far and wide to friends across Beijing. Many had already checked local listings and were gearing up for Potterfest 2010. One friend, however, assumed it would not be shown in China. Once I told him it indeed was and that I was … Continue reading