Buying Chinese Fruit

Near my subway stop in Foshan, China was a row of vendors, some selling fruit, others selling knockoff electronics. I’m not sure which had a longer shelf life.

3 Internalized Idiosyncrasies from China

Sometimes after one returns from travels, they search for some pithy declaration on how their world views may have changed. (Does that sentence count?) That truism is certainly worthwhile and meaningful, but often it's the minutiae of daily life that is rather interesting. We go our whole lives fruitlessly searching for deeper meaning; let’s just... Continue Reading →

Plastic Surgery in Korea

“How about that one?” – me “Yep.” – Korean friend “And that one?” – me “Of course. You can’t tell?” – friend “Well, yeah I think it’s pretty obvious. But maybe they’re all just really pretty right?” – me “Well, I think Korean girls are pretty. But those ones all definitely have had plastic surgery.”... Continue Reading →

Lantern Festival in China

This story will be the quick confluence of two threads that will quickly be sewn together. One. When I was living in Foshan, China, I often took the time on my days off to ride the subway to Guangzhou, the third largest city in the country basically just to walk around and see the city.... Continue Reading →

The (Soft) Power of K-Pop

Quick thoughts on soft power. It is ridiculously important if a country wants to have positive sway over a another one’s populace, they should have some sort of soft power. I’m not making a value judgment. I’m not saying they have to do this. I’m not saying they should do this. But soft power goes,... Continue Reading →

Difficulties of the Korean Language

An-yong-ha-se-yo!!! That’s the impossibly hard way to say hi in Korean. I find the language incredibly difficult just to muster their sounds. Some languages have fairly easy phonemes for English-speakers to make. For the most part, on a very simple level, Japanese and Chinese, aside from a handful of sounds, have fairly familiar phonemes. (Chinese... Continue Reading →

Zhangjiajie, Hunan Province, PRC

Some places don’t really need too much of an introduction or historical context: they’re just damn pretty. Zhangjiajie could stand on its own as a destination, with pictures doing most of the talking. However, per usual, I like to give slightly more deliberation. Millions of years ago, the park was flooded with that giant ocean... Continue Reading →

Changsha, Hunan Province, PRC

Changsha is the provincial capital of Hunan Province, and a place where Mao Zedong spent loads of time. It’s in the center of the country, but has a fairly extensive military history, both ancient and modern. The most recent was the Japanese invasion during World War 2 (which began in 1937 for the Chinese). It... Continue Reading →

Rome + Vatican City (Part 5)

This is a story back when I was doing study abroad in Paris, 2015. We took a weeklong trip to Italy, with our third stop being Rome and Vatican City. We stayed a few nights, touring, walking around for probably a marathon’s distance over that time, and checking out some watering holes. Two of the... Continue Reading →

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