The End

Ten years ago, armed with a generous free baggage allowance, I packed everything I thought I would need over the next 12 months into two large suitcases. I was on my way to China. It was two weeks before Christmas, but temperatures were still mild in North Carolina for the late fall. I had just […]

On racism

Racism exists. A woman from Texas started speaking to me the other night. She started by wedging herself in between the wall and me and asking me if the bar we were at had any dessert. I pointed her to the food page of the English menu, copies of which we both had, and told […]

Home, Sweet Home

There’s nothing like returning home again after a long spell overseas. The excitement of seeing family and friends again. The joy of being able to do the things you used to do. And mostly, the ease of it all. Things aren’t constantly threatening to break down. Dust takes much longer to accumulate. Everything is literally […]

How terrible a place is Beijing?

Judging by the lengths the government is going to make Beijing a “nice” place — pretty terrible! Here are some emergency measures being taken to turn this city around for the two weeks APEC will be in town: Pollution: Government officials have promised nice air for APEC, by closing factories and kicking people out of […]

San Francisco

It was time to get a new visa, so back to the States I went. The visa run, a time-honored tradition for expats living in China, may seem quite inconvenient, but I love the opportunity to travel on the company’s dime. A free trip home? Why not! This time, the timing was especially convenient because […]