Saturday, December 27, 2008


I went to use Adsotrans recently and was surprised to find something entirely new, something entirely awesome.

Popup Chinese.

That post I wrote about Adsotrans is still valid- the website has that sweet web 2.0 dictionary. But they're also now producing podcasts. These podcasts have a real personality to them and they're totally Beijing-centric. They have a brilliant, eclectic range of content up so far, ranging from KTV to literature. I don't really listen to language-podcasts for Chinese much anymore, I've been sticking to the Chinese news podcasts from the ABC and BBC recently. But this is definitely the most impressive podcast I've ever heard. It's often really hard to strike a balance between practical and fun. These guys have found it.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Peaceful Night

Well then, Merry Christmas!

I'm off to Taiwan next week which should be exciting. I'm not really sure what to expect; Mum bought me the Lonely Planet, but I don't really have any faith in those, and this one is pretty underwhelming. I mean it sounds good in the guide, but the guide doesn't really paint a vivid picture. But I'm going with a good friend of mine who was born in Taiwan, and I'm also planning on taking a week to visit my friends in Beijing. I'm really, really looking forward to it.

Christmas last year, in Beijing, was the best I've had. Funny thing that, because it's not really much of a big deal there. But that's just the thing: instead of hysteria, impossible-bookings and last-minute-rush, I just got together with my friends and ate turkey in Guomao. It was brilliant.

This year it's a hot one. Of course, my parent's house in Cairns is totally air-conditioned, so if you're watching a Christmas film or listening to the music, it's easy to imagine that it's chilly outside. But it really, really isn't.

Cairns is weird at Christmas time. Our neighbour got egged this evening.
"With an egg?" is what my Mum asked. I don't think we've been egged.

Anyway I hope everyone has a lovely couple of days. I've been lucky in that I've already been on holidays for about 7 weeks now, but for those of you who work long hard hour jobs, enjoy the break. And thanks for not egging us.