Sunday in the Park with Chinese Characteristics

How Chinese is modern China?  That was a question posed by Christian Caryl in his review of a recent slew of China books in the 12/9/10 issue of the New York Review of Books.  Caryl summarized the thesis of journalist Martin Jacques’s book, titled (with Glenn Beck-esque hysteria) When China Rules the World: The End … Continue reading

An Asia Foodie: Beijing Edition

During my pre-Beijing internet food research, I stumbled upon a Chowhound thread in which the poster Yi Chi Wei Rong stated: “if you like oily, salty and doughy, then Beijing is the place for you.” Although 30 degree temperatures and gray skies do get me craving a plate of boiled (doughy) jiaozi dumplings, I struggled … Continue reading

Chain Reaction

In an iconic old city, whose streets and landmarks are steeped in history and venerated in numerous works of art, the forces of globalization and consumer capitalism (aided by a municipal government tasked with housing its enormous populace) are replacing neighborhood businesses and traditional architectural forms with multinational chains and bland glass and steel high-rises. … Continue reading

Beijing Calling

As the grandchild of Chinese refugees (my mom was raised in Hong Kong and East Timor and my dad in the Philippines), mainland China has always been shrouded in mystery for me.  This year, I felt the call to make (for the 1st time) a pilgrimage to the centuries-old capital of the country that was … Continue reading

Happy Holidays from Hong Kong!

Apologies for the unintended hiatus.  2 new posts from my trip to Ubud (with the mom) last month are up, to be followed by posts from my recent 2-week trip to China, at a rate of about 1 post a day.  I hope that everyone is having a wonderful holiday season.  I miss you!!!  

Bells and Whistles

Honestly, I find Balinese dance a little opaque, but I love me some gamelan music.  A gamelan is a Balinese or Javanese musical ensemble featuring metallophones, xylophones, drums, gongs, bamboo flutes, and strings.  The term “gamelan” refers to the set of instruments, and each gamelan is a separate, set entity, constructed and tuned as an … Continue reading