Beijing Backpacking, Day 28: Good Company is the Best Way to Pass Time

A FEW WEEKS ago I sought hallmarks of Chinese heritage and architecture at one of Beijing’s main railway stations, only to be bitterly disappointed at the fact that the entire concourse is transit, for ticketed passengers only. This time, on my way out of Beijing for a few days, I had the opportunity to check … More Beijing Backpacking, Day 28: Good Company is the Best Way to Pass Time

Beijing Backpacking, Day 27: A “Unique Shopping” Experience?

I HAD A particularly interesting conversation with one of my new friends a couple of weeks ago. A remark she made to me made me feel like my quest for tradition seemed almost puritanical in nature, that I had been guilty of making the same dichotomy between the valuable ‘traditional’ and consumerist ‘globalised’, that I … More Beijing Backpacking, Day 27: A “Unique Shopping” Experience?

Beijing Backpacking, Day 25: Being Yourself, Not Caring, and Fitting In

IT’S A GIVEN in any country that there will be everyday practices you’re not used to. The particularly interesting thing about China, however, is that there is this paradox of a culture where individuals are all expected to continue to this overarching social cohesion; while at the same time, their more superficial public behaviours show … More Beijing Backpacking, Day 25: Being Yourself, Not Caring, and Fitting In

IT’S A GIVEN in any country that there will be everyday practices you’re not used to. The particularly interesting thing about China, however, is that there is this paradox of a culture where individuals are all expected to continue to this overarching social cohesion; while at the same time, their more superficial public behaviours show … More