Dragon City – Chengdu in Spicy Sichuan

Why Chengdu? It holds mighty strategic status in the Middle Kingdom era, but now? People seem to go to see the pandas, but what else? I really didn’t know it would be such a vibrant dragon city – mythical, powerful, monstrously alive while seeming to sleep. I spent 4 days in Chengdu in November and, as always, I had a guided day tour to see … Continue reading Dragon City – Chengdu in Spicy Sichuan

Phoenix City – Timeless Fenghuang

My first view of Fenghuang, and I was entranced. Fenghuang means Phoenix – that mythical bird that is eternal – arising from the ashes if destroyed by fire, coupling with the dragon to become a complete ying and yang. The phoenix is forever, and Fenghuang seems aptly named. Fenghuang is a famous ancient watertown that has called to me for years.  Pictures of this ancient … Continue reading Phoenix City – Timeless Fenghuang

Me and Mao in Hefei 2019

I always like to be back in Hefei on the USTC campus in the fall – my home in China.Without really planning, I found Chairman Mao came along with me – in the Mao biography I was reading, in the Mao leadership case study for my students, in the images still common around town, in some ways the locals keep his memory alive.It is so … Continue reading Me and Mao in Hefei 2019

Timeout in Tongli

Time stands still in Tongli Water Town – an ancient village carefully preserved amidst the modern urban sprawl that connects Shanghai and Suzhou. Once inside this living museum, there is little to do but enjoy the feeling of time travel back to a life of cobble streets, canal boats, elegant gardens and food vendors. I spent four days and it took all four to walk … Continue reading Timeout in Tongli

Penang – 35 days, 35 reasons to stay

Travel adventure is my life, but I do not need to rush around anymore. I don’t want to carry a backpack and race to see all the attractions in a place before marching on.  I don’t “do” places like young travelers. I was so privileged and pleased to “live” on Penang Island for an adventure holiday. I have a very dear friend to thank for … Continue reading Penang – 35 days, 35 reasons to stay

My Love Affair with Georgetown Chinatown

I am enraptured with Chinatown, the heart of Georgetown on Penang Island, Malaysia. I cannot deny my shameless bias for all things Chinese in multicultural Malaysia. Because I spend part of every year in China, I feel right at home in Chinatown everywhere but this one is special. Living in Penang for a month, I was drawn back almost every day to the streets and … Continue reading My Love Affair with Georgetown Chinatown

Making Memories of Qatar in Doha

Doha is an amazing city. It didn’t even exist a few decades ago. And look at it now!! Here is that pyramid-shaped hotel today – still vibrant, still iconic on the Doha skyline. Doha has had wise leadership and lots of resources, so, as an ultramodern city, it offers every conceivable opportunity to make memories – many that the world knows all about. I am … Continue reading Making Memories of Qatar in Doha

Making Memories of Qatar’s Countryside

For most people, Qatar – the country – is synomymous with Doha – the main city. But there is more to Qatar, and there are memories to be made driving out to explore.Your first stop should be the camel racetrack where the camels are penned and trained. You can plan to see the racedays, but you appreciate the care given to these prized animals every … Continue reading Making Memories of Qatar’s Countryside

Making Memories of Qatar in Souq Waqif

Qatar was my home for 2 years, and I have so many fond memories, especially of Souq Waqif – the heart and soul of Doha old and new. Here are my suggestions for making memories of your own.Visit and revisit the souq at different times of day as the light changes. Sometimes you may have the souq all to yourself! Sometimes you will get swept … Continue reading Making Memories of Qatar in Souq Waqif