Freedom vs. Stability – Are They Mutually Exclusive?
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I never expected a quick coffee date would turn into a deep discussion about FREEDOM vs. STABILITY. But as we sat around the coffee shop table – me with two of … Read More

What Happens When You Bring Cake in China?
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It never would’ve occurred to me to purchase a cake in order to save face. But that’s what our Foreign Affairs Officer (FAO) urged us to do when we needed … Read More

Is That Really So Illegal? Cultural Views of Plagiarism
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During my sabbatical from high school teaching during the 2009-2010 school year, our family moved to China. There, my wife and I worked at a university as English instructors. My … Read More

Getouttamyway! How to Interpret the Frenzy on the Roads of China
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I wrote this when we lived in China. Indeed, the getouttamyway! frenzy on the roads there provoked my imagination. What Might Driving Patterns Say About National Character? Living in Ningbo, China … Read More

A Story of Hope for this New Year’s Day
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When I reflect on where I’ve been on New Year’s day, one stands out in particular for me. It was New Year’s Day 2010, during the year our family spent … Read More

What Happens When We Rise Up to the Challenge
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Living abroad as a family often forces you to rise up to numerous challenges and stretching experiences. Sometimes, you move forward eagerly. Other times, you find yourself reluctant. What we … Read More

This is what happens when China commemorates its 9-11
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How do we, as a nation, commemorate loss? September 18, 2009 NOTE: I wrote this piece eight years ago, during the year our family lived in China. It is an … Read More

This Is What Happened On Our First Date…In China (You Will Laugh.)
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When you are living in a country new to you, even the simplest moments can be an adventure. And this was true for our experience in China several years ago. … Read More

A Billion People Can’t Be Wrong: Just Dance!
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We can learn so much as we dance through the changing seasons of our lives. Such was the case for our Chinese friend, Da Chun. It had been five years since … Read More

Wall Mentality: Learning from History
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Walls. Big walls. Thousands of miles of walls. Walls to keep invaders out. Walls to keep people in. Wall mentality. In fact, unlike what many people think, the 5000-mile Great … Read More

East meets West in Song
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The sound man was the epitome of “cool.” His hair was pulled back in a ponytail with a stylish cap turned backward on his head. He prepared to help us record … Read More

Ready, Set, Jump out of the Mainstream
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Before even arriving at the altar, my then-boyfriend and I contemplated our future together. We both were committed to taking the jump and raising our family overseas together. This common dream … Read More

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