Bratislava: Red Trams, Red Lanterns

Red is the colour of Wales, and of many other countries including that of my now former home China. I suppose the adage ‘you can take the boy out of China but you can’t take China out of the boy’ seems correct and I continue to be intrigued by Europe’s Chinese diaspora. What led them to […]

Cluj-Napoca: Transylvania Calling

Somewhere in the midst of my wanderlust came my first visit to Romania. It’s one of those times I have to omit the capital as Bucharest lies deep in the south east and so on my geographic path toward Moldova I journey via an inexorably slow train to the heart of Transylvania. Getting off it proves […]

Budapest: Opulence, Flags and Pinball

In Guangzhou, a city of several million people I barely heard a police or ambulance siren. Two days in Budapest finds me near deafened by them. The cities Chinese restaurants are fantastic and their proprietors are somewhat surprised when I greet them with a ‘Ni Hao.’ By contrast to Warsaw, Budapest’s Chinese diaspora outnumbers the Vietnamese […]

Chisinau: Forget Breakfast

I am from a place in Wales (or England – depending on where one stands politically speaking) called Monmouthshire, or is that Gwent? This counties complex history is fitting of Moldova – for centuries batted between neighbours Romania and Russia. The flag and language still owe a great deal to the former. Look on Google […]

50×50 Project

This summer I’ve managed to finally have a semblance of a holiday. This however doesn’t mean idly sitting on a beach, oh no, I have managed to whizz through five nine countries! All this means that give or take an official stance on say Wales or Taiwan, I’ve amassed 40 which begs the question: Can I […]

Warsaw: Travellers’ Cafe

Serendipity, now there’s a word. Have you ever been looking for something and stumbled on something else by accident. A few days’ into Warsaw I came across the Travellers’ Cafe. I have to wait til 2pm for it to open which seems odd given the normal hours for a cafe is 7 or 8 in […]

Warsaw: Uprising Phoenix

It all starts with the research… even before leaving China, the signs are there, the growing dissatisfaction with ‘things,’ the realisation that the honeymoon period has passed, the boredom of knowing what another year of teaching in China will entail; meeting a nice smiley woman who once you sign the contract isn’t so nice anymore, […]