Somewhere through the brick labyrinth of a Chinese village, on a small street untouched yet by pavers that lay asphalt faster than we can sweep, a man who’s shucking corn waves at us, inviting us in his home, and my heart bursts with joy. It might not seem like a big deal to have someone inviting you […]

The Feast – A Dramatic Slide Show

Riding on a highway out of the city we saw a group of people standing in the wrecks of what must have been a pretty large firework action. They kept waving at us, so we went there. It turned out to be the opening of a new stem cell clinic. After making a handful of selfies with us the staff invited us to eat with them in a hotel nearby. The rest, we think, is better told in pictures:

It took me two weeks, but I got rid of the panic that took hold of me whenever I met someone who started talking Chinese to me, then got mad I didn’t answer and yelled at me, while I flapped my arms like a chicken until they left. I finally understood some patterns, so when I […]

How we crashed a funeral and got busted by the police

“We pushed our luck too hard this time”, says Vlad as we’re rolling behind the police. “I knew it.” The blue and red flashing lights on their old Volkswagen reverberate in the dust, the night, the small brick houses of Baozhuangcun. We were the talk of the town. Maybe not everybody liked that. Us walking […]

We are travelling through China like we’re in a computer game in which the characters we meet have the same reactions  all the time.  They point their fingers at us and laugh, they shout “Halou”, they ask us what country are we from, they take a selfie with us and then they leave. We are like some […]

Today we saw the sun. So it was that I was walking down a paved road in the middle of a field with lots of Chinese who were planting coal. They stop whenever I pass by, they pull out their smartphones and take pictures of me. At some point, everything around gets a copperish hue. People’s skin mirrors the color […]

Beijing would be a dream-like city

Beijing is the most systematized city I have ever seen. Its map looks as if a spider has drawn it. Each place has a guardsman perched on a footbridge, with an umbrella above his head and a stick in his hand. They’re stationed on the streets, at the subway, in front of banks, in market […]

School’s out in Zhouzhou. Kids run onto the street where grandparents or parents wait for them. A girl is doing her homework on the back of a tricycle. A boy in a Bart Simpson jumper queues up for candyfloss. We buy roasted chestnuts and 5 fried quail eggs on a stick with strawberry jam. “Let’s […]

The Great Metaphor

As I was climbing the stone steps, I marveled, like all men, at the monumental effort undertaken by some people to keep other people away. Whenever I wanted to take a picture, I felt a pinch in my ear: hey, it’s already been done. Every angle. Thousands of times. What’s the point? When doubt creeps in, I […]