Friday, August 31


Lillian and I have been harrassed a few times about making babies quickly. We have our mission laid out clearly.

Meanwhile, traveling in Yunnan, we saw how common it is for women there to use baby carriers. The one in the picture is the most common type, but others are popular too - including another back version and the side sling.

Here in Shanghai, babies are usually with their grandparents, as many (most?) people consider that young parents should focus on their careers and making money for the future of the family. So the babies stay with their grandparents, usually throughout the day until mommy and daddy get off tired from work, but often away from them in another city for upwards of 3-4 years. It was relieving to see that in this part of China, the normalcy of parents bringing up their own children has not been disturbed. In fact, I frequently saw fathers carrying their children, sometimes in baby carriers! Yay!

Lillian and I bought two baby carriers - we mailed one to the US for my sister Charlotte, and kept one for our firstborn.
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Thursday, August 30

The Civilized Sounds of Nature

In both her music and her lyrics, Bjork captures best the correspondences between the sounds of nature and those of modern (city) life. The Modern Things and the Overture for "Selmasongs: Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack Dancer in the Dark" are some good examples.
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Traveling in beautiful areas of Yunnan, somewhat removed from civilization, I discovered that water, wind and creatures created sounds that I had previously heard only through modern technology. The sound of water bouncing from a large rock sounded just like an airplane when I stepped on my tiptoes; that of the wind through the trees in one area like flicking a ruler; and that of one bug like a typewriter. (Okay, one of those is made up...)

It reminds me of the unity of all things in Creation.

Wednesday, August 8


Plan A: Visit the US - no go no visa
Plan B: Visit family in Canada - no go no time for all the forms
Plan C: Trip to Tibet - no go because quota for number of foreign visitors already met for August
Plan D: Party in Xinjiang - no go because Lillian's parents are busy, no time to prepare a wedding party there, so we'll have to go back in Feb anyway
Plan E: vacation to Yunnan