Houston, Beijing

In the early morning darkness of December 11th our Boeing 777 lumbered into Beijing’s “Capital International Airport”. The sun was hours from rising and the temperature was below zero.  While the city of Beijing was lit and sprawling for all the eye could see, the massive airport sat eerily quiet, almost abandoned. No flights were scheduled to depart until later in the morning, hours after our arrival. The only aircraft alive were those arriving into the Middle Kingdom’s capital city from all far reaches of the world. Continue reading “Houston, Beijing”

The Great Firewall of China — And How to Avoid It

The internet in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is fairly heavily regulated in regards to content and networks. Almost everyone in the West is aware of this and it is often cited as a sort of damning evidence against the Chinese state in efforts to vilify the government as some sort of oppressive, totalitarian regime. Americans, especially, have a pretty warped concept of what life and government in the PRC is actually like; And, Americans, especially, enjoy vilifying foreign states that have been historical competitors or hold associations to the boogeyman that is Marxist ideology. Maybe that mentality is just a hold-over from the Cold War or maybe it’s actively fostered to maintain a sense of unease and distrust towards a major geopolitical opponent (who we might wish to be on unfriendly terms with in the future). Who knows? —None of that is what this blog post is intended to cover. Continue reading “The Great Firewall of China — And How to Avoid It”

Monday, May 4: catching up

I’m sitting at Leo’s Pizza having a couple beers while listening to music. I just finished processing and uploading a handful of pictures I took this afternoon to my Tumblr. I know I haven’t been updating this blog all that much, but not a huge amount has been going on. Most things have become pretty normal, pretty regular, pretty mundane. Teaching is going well, and I’m getting the swing of most things around here, despite still missing home and everyone I knew on the other side of the planet.

Continue reading “Monday, May 4: catching up”

Sunday, April 26th

Life is pretty lonely here. Homesickness, I feel, is starting to hit me. I feel very alone here, almost lost. The initial shock and awe of China is wearing off, and I’m starting to become more alone with my thoughts, and just alone in general. I miss a lot of people, I regret a lot of things, and I’m hoping that China is a good life decision. That it will be good for me. That it will give me what I need.

Continue reading “Sunday, April 26th”

Thursday, April 23

Today was fairly uneventful. China is becoming the new normal, and things are starting to lose their original fascination and luster. The wonder is turning to the mundane, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I’m getting around a lot better, I’m far more confident in general, and feel far better equipped to handle the obstacles presented by daily life.

Continue reading “Thursday, April 23”