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Archive for September, 2007

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Chinese Sex Culture

Tuesday, September 25th, 2007

After being in Suzhou for a week, I have seen many things that distinguish this city from its brothers and sisters throughout China.  Everything from the gardens and historical districts to the broad, tree-lined avenues is remarkably well kept.   [read on]

Suzhou Satisfaction

Sunday, September 23rd, 2007

The longer I remain in this country, the more merit I find here. I partially attribute this to the slow acclimation and inevitable desensitizing to the oddities and initial culture shock. However, it seems that as I move onward through China, I am also ascending the ladder of quality in its cities and economic stability. Whilst I was first assaulted with poverty, dust, grime and pollution in the North, I am now surrounded by attractive avenues, fresh foliage and charming canals. The spitting and public defecation have all but faded and it appears the citizens here mostly enjoy a more civilized cosmopolitan demeanor. This is a pleasant change which is leaving me increasingly less anxious to leave China.   [read on]

Only 48 Hours in Nanjing

Friday, September 21st, 2007

I only stopped in Nanjing for 48 hours. It seemed like a pleasant city, but wasn’t attractive enough to detain me longer. The time on my visa is running short and there are still too many places to visit in China before my three months are up. It is starting to appear that every country I visit will find a way to secure my interest until they’re obliged to kick me out.    [read on]

Xi’an:Armies, Mountains and New Ink

Tuesday, September 18th, 2007

It has been nine days since I left the Kung Fu school and thankfully, the experience is quickly fading into a distant past. Every facet of life that was lacking during my time there has returned in full force.  Due to the hardships I recently endured, my sense of appreciation has also been greatly enhanced to enjoy it all the more!     [read on]


Monday, September 10th, 2007

Ah, freedom… I can taste it again! I am happily writing this on my way away from Songshan and the hellish Kung Fu training experience endured there.    [read on]

Pain and Suffering in the Mountains of Central China

Monday, September 3rd, 2007

I just finished reading “The Travels of Marco Polo”, which seemed intriguing enough as a choice of literature during my first stint in mainland China.  I was surprised to find that it reads very differently than expected.  Rather than offer a narrative of his experiences, or even personal insight, he merely presented a series of objective elements to log the attributes of various cities visited during his journey through the medieval Far East.  It was interesting enough, but constantly seemed as though something vital was missing.

Reading the afterword by Howard Mittlemark helped to clarify Polo’s potential motives as not simply being limited by medieval thinking and literature, but rather the product of a unique experience chronicling new territory.  He then proceeded to compare the style to modern travel writing by saying that now “no matter where you go, somebody has been there before, and the only thing left to chronicle is the infinite minute variations of the inner world.”

So what is going on in my ‘inner world’ right now?  Would you really like to hear about my current state of depression?  Do you really care, or are you a hoping to justify your comfort zone by thriving on the knowledge of my current tales of misfortune?  Either way, here it comes… currently, I am completely miserable.  For the first time since I set out on this adventure (and for a long time before that) I am far from happy to be where I am.  My positive outlook has taken a vacation and left me alone with a demon called pessimism.    [read on]