Aug 192010
 
YCC Ghana's Genius Reading Club Program

We have discussed where clothes you donate might end up, but what about the BOOKS you toss into the “Donation” bin?

Me, I only had a hazy idea of how my old tomes might be used.  Did they find a second life as firewood?  Toilet paper?  Food storage? Sometimes I worried about my cast-off literature’s fate.

And thus it was with absolute joy, during the three months I volunteered in Ghana, that I [...Read More!]

Aug 162010
 
A Hot Dog Eating Contest as an ESL Field Trip

Pop quiz:

You’re an ESL teacher at an accredited English language school in Boston’s posh Back Bay.

Where do you take your students for the final field trip of Session 8?

Obvious Answer:

First to bowling, then to a hot dog-eating contest, of course!

I’ve written a photo essay about Laos, but what follows is far classier: a photo essay documenting a hot dog-eating challenge!

To be frank (haha!) I think you’ll dig the tale’s shocking [...Read More!]

Aug 122010
 
The Sexiest Buildings in Boston: Part 2

Today is my ONE YEAR anniversary of taking that first flight out of Boston into the 9-month journey that would ultimately span Japan, Southeast Asia, Ghana, Iberia… and a whole heck of a lot of learning and fun!

How to celebrate?  By sharing with you my absolute FAVORITE building in Boston.  I am panting a little as I write this, I love this structure so much.  Please honor my love and read [...Read More!]

Aug 102010
 
Mei’s Article: Life in Boston Versus Life in Taiwan

Article #12 in the ESL Student Life Stories Project, by Mei from Taiwan, age 35.

Pedestrians First!  The cars stop behind the white line whenever I cross the road here in Boston.

I am so surprised by the street action!  I come from Taiwan, where drivers and passengers always contest each other.

Sometimes in Taiwan, a driver will curse at you if you don’t let his car pass.  He will [...Read More!]

Aug 062010
 
The Sexiest Buildings In Boston: Part 1

One reason Boston is so deep in my heart is because its buildings are so darn sexy. They’re sleek, tasteful, not overly huge… and a lot of them are nice and shiny!

This post is the start of a series of odes to Boston architecture, so it’s only right to start with the biggest and best: the Hancock Building.

The John Hancock Building, located right near the Copley stop on the Green Line and [...Read More!]

Jul 312010
 
Feeling Strange, 2 Months after 9 Months Traveling

Blogs are supposed to be honest, so after a bunch of weeks of trying to hide it, let’s be honest here: Things are weird.

I suppose it was to be expected, right?

You can’t just uproot your life and meander around the world for nine months, then come home and expect everything to be silky smooth.

Now, it’s not that things are bad: in fact, most things are lovely.

It’s all just… weird.

The best way [...Read More!]

Jul 292010
 
Jeremy's Article: Acting Stupid in Beautiful Singapore

Article #9 in the ESL Student Life Story Project, by Jeremy from China, age 20.

When I finished high  school in China, I went to Singapore to keep studying because I felt there were too many high school graduates like me in China, and I wouldn’t get into a good school there.

Living in beautiful Singapore was a huge challenge for me because I wanted to learn English well, so [...Read More!]

Jul 222010
 
On Risk: From Homelessness to a Four Diamond Hotel

“I feel terrible for you!” sighed Sherry, watching me lug my suitcase through the sultry New York streets.  “I’m so sorry we have no place for you to sleep tonight!”

I chuckled.  “Literally,” I said, “this is the hundredth time I’ve showed up in a city and had nowhere to stay.  And yet, miraculously, it always works out in the end.”

Sherry looked dubious and murmured, “I really hope you’ll be all right.”

It [...Read More!]

Jul 192010
 
My Photo Essay About Laos on Boston.com!

As you likely know, I spent the nine months from August of 2009 to May of 2010 traveling around the world, and one of my favorite countries on the journey was Laos.

Now, by clicking on the link below, you can see the deliciousness that is Laos whittled into a colorful photo essay for Boston.com !

Exciting!

I hope you enjoy the piece, forward it far and wide, and then go back and read [...Read More!]