Showing posts from 2012
The holiday season has begun. From Shanghai, the shopping hit a massive high on 11-11-12 which in Asia is singles day, and the biggest online retailer "taobao" did billions in sales that day. 
As an antidote to some of the consumerism we are constantly bombarded with I am giving you the link to my friend Anna's website for cooking healthy Chinese food. She, as many, are aware, that there is a lot of oil used in common Chinese fried wok foods and she is working hard to help people learn better, more healthful ways of cooking. When dad was fighting his cancer I turned to her site for inspiration. It turns out we live in the same district of Shanghai so we got together a few weeks back and ate with some friends at a vegetarian restaurant.  

<a href=>Use these Healthy Chinese Recipes to Improve yourself and your families' Health</a>

On a personal note, I was fortunate to enjoy some roast turkey in my school…

Construction Progess & How to deal with NOISE

I managed to make peace with the ambient noise coming from the three massive construction projects going on adjacent to my building. Luckily, the way my apartment is situated, I was able to start sleeping in the bedroom that faces into my building complex instead of the one on the outside facing the road. Secondly, putting the air conditioner on during the night, while not my first choice, definitely masks the noise. Another option that I use sometimes is to put on the background sound of a running brook. It also covers the noise.

China is an extremely noisy place. I also keep earplugs in my bag at all times. They are useful while shopping in Carrefour or if I am on the metro. It seems that checking for high decibel noises in public places is not a consideration here. In fact, there is some kind of odd mentality that the louder the sounds while shopping, the more people will buy. That just makes me shop faster and leave quicker, glad to have plugged my ears. Even with earplugs, it&#…

Back to reality (and air quality issues)

The so-called typhoon made the air and temperature quite comfortable last week, if a little rainy and windy. Now it is back to ugly air. >> After typhoon Haikui, the air was clean! But soon the effects wore off. At least now we are having a storm which will settle the particulate matter (PM) down a little. Never mind about foreign consulates reporting on the air quality. Apparently the local news has caught onto the game as well. The first picture represents "excellent" air quality; the second is supposedly "good." Good! Although I sense a tiny bit of PS or another program has "enhanced" the first photo, but it really was just about that nice here, making a record 21 days of clean air!  Too bad I missed most of them but I am glad that it can happen.

[photo courtesy of Shanghai Daily News]  For the full article, go to

An American returns to Shanghai after visiting Germany

I just returned to Shanghai about 5 days ago after visiting the US and Germany. And I am happily a few pounds heavier after consuming vast quantities of pie, cake, beer, wine, cheeses, bakery delicacies such as apple strudel and Schwabian treats like maultaschen and flammküchen.

For a while Shanghai was actually a little bit comfortable with the breezes from the typhoon but now it's back to feeling like the hell of a humid sauna. I'd like to thank my boss right now for the reminder yesterday that in reality I do not have to spend most of every day exposed to the harsh outdoor elements of this wicked city. I only wish she herself would also get the benefit of running around Shanghai during a hot August day with the odds of winning a race rather low, collecting marketing photos and promo during work hours. Thanks to the universe for sparing members of my team from heat exhaustion although it was a close call. Great bonding experience though.

It has been said that "life is w…


picking blackberries
 near the Rhein River
 we might punish you this way if you don't behave

 Bern on the Mosel
This American [third person from the left] traveled to Germany to play violin in a special private concert for Sol Gabetta to receive the 2012 Jeunesses Musicales Young Artist Award. Delegates from all over the world comprise the audience; they support this prize and organization. The concert took place at Weikersheim Castle, Germany. More info on

Wild Springtime

Bye bye green field & vegetable gardens... Xgames Asia

 Lovely Putuoshan Xgames moto-tricks  Bamboo forest at Sheshan (line 9)
Zhujiajiao - near Shanghai

Chicken Cacciatore

Dinner at home last night for friends:
Starters:  pimento stuffed olives, bread sticks, basil cream cheese, figs, rosemary and balsamic baked onions and almonds with glasses of cab-sauv 
Main: chicken cacciatore over spaghetti noodles 
Green Salad:  baby romaine & bibb lettuces, arugula, avocado, pear and toasted walnuts with mock Caesar dressing
Dessert:  custard and fruit-topped tartlets with pieces of chili dark chocolate 

Happy Year of the Dragon