Shenzhen: Making a Pig’s Ear of Spring

After kicking off the year with many visits to regional Guangdong it was time to re-aquaint myself with the one and only Shenzhen, the city that still holds a special place for me even though I’ve now lived longer in Guangzhou. This time I try something different which is to catch a bus. Having discovered the joys […]

Qingyuan: Strangely Familiar

On a foggy day in early January I notched up my 80th city and it fell to this relative obscurity to the north of Guangzhou (co-incidentally my first beginning with Q). So off I set on this mini-adventure by bus from Tianhe Coach Station. The vistas of both Tianhe and Huadu are known to me and […]

China: Five Years in a Kingdom of Red

This December marks five years’ since I first arrived in the middle kingdom. One of the most common questions I get asked by my students is: Why did you come to China? In short, I had been to Turkey and the school there breached their contract. A friend suggested I teach in Thailand. When I got […]

November Nosh #2: Pizza Marzano aka Pizza Express

Now a touch of class in the newly opened IGC (International Grand City) mall in Guangzhou’s expat haven of Liede. To most of us its recognisable as Pizza Express; apparently they opted for the Marzano moniker purely because their tomato supplier is exclusive to them, which is admirable, loyal but an otherwise insane business model, […]

November Nosh #1: Bread Talk

*I have decided to designate November a foodie month, beginning with this which I started a long while back. Relocating to China five years’ ago left a bit of a dent in the culinary department. It has meant saying goodbye to Apple Turnovers, Raspberry Jam Doughnuts and other staples to my diet like Lamb and […]

Guangzhou: Adventures in the Fog Delta

It’s said that the fog in London can be thick as pea soup though I reckon the Pearl River Delta can give it a run for its money. March is the doldrums for weather in Guangzhou. Pulling the curtains back each day reveals a white canvas enveloping much of the terrain before me. Only once […]

Guangzhou: The Food From UNCLE

Cheap eateries in the glittering wealth of far eastern cities are gold dust; think Saizeriya. As previously mentioned in another blog, my kitchen is the size of a shoebox, so I’ve been steadily building up places to dine. In recent months I’ve come across a place called UNCLE – why it’s called that I don’t […]