Death.

I had a near death experience back in March in Morocco with my dad and sisters when we got in a pretty horrific car accident. We were incredibly lucky none of us were killed or even severely injured. My sister later reflected back on the accident and said it made her aware of her own mortality. I asked her in all seriousness if she really didn’t think about death. She said she never did. I was shocked by that revelation because I think about death on a nearly daily basis. Not in a depressing or morbid way, but it certainly crosses my mind a lot. And now, even more so. The way people drive here is absolutely terrifying. I think there’s a good chance I’m going to die every time I cross the street on foot and certainly every time I am in a cab or on...

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Survivor Philippines Episode 2!

Check out my latest recap on Survivor Philippines Episode 2 here: http://www.realitynation.com/tv-shows/survivor/philippines-episode-2-roxanne-eliminated/20406/ Also, I did an interview about this episode, including answering questions about sex on the island here: http://bit.ly/UvMbnt Share It: Hide Sites

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Cabbies. Part 2.

Just like in NYC and many other cities, there are a lot of legit cabs and there are also “black cars” which are the illegitimate cabs. No meters, pre-negotiated price, etc. Well tonight I didn’t leave my office until 6pm for a 7pm dinner and my office is nowhere near any subway stops so I have to take a cab to get there but there were none in sight and a “black cab” (it was actually tan) pulled up and asked where I was going and actually gave me a reasonable price given rush hour traffic and my desired destination. I tried to bargain him down but he said the traffic was bad. I get in and then I’m channeling my worrywart of a mother, panicking about my decision to get in this non-cab, wondering if I’ll even realize if...

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One Week of Blue Skies.

I thought I had gotten lucky. I got to Beijing and had seven days of beautiful blue skies and no smog whatsoever. “This never happens,” my sister kept telling me, “you’re not getting an accurate picture of what it is going to be like to live here.” Meanwhile I was instagramming sunrise and sunset pictures. (Thank you jetlag). Anyhow, I was hanging out with a well-connected friend this weekend and marveling over my luck at the amazing weather from the time I had arrived until just a day or so earlier. Well, it turns out it wasn’t luck at all. An important UN (or US?) official was going to be in town for one week and happened to arrive on the same day I did, so China had seeded the clouds (they did this before the Olympics as...

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Oops.

I lived in Beijing when I was around 2 years old. I attended nursery school here and was the only “round eye” in the class. My mom had gotten me a short haircut because, having never been a girly girl herself, she didn’t want to deal with doing my hair. The result of this was people constantly coming up to her (and me) and saying “ta shi nan har hai shi nu har,” meaning is it a boy child or a girl child? The reason I tell that story is to preface this one. As I mentioned in my previous post on teaching, I gave the kids in my class English names. Well, today, “Larry” was wearing a skirt. I quickly renamed her Laurie but laminated name tags had already been made, so I had to tape over it with notebook paper. Oops. My...

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