Nana Chen's blog

Hong Kong in Motion I

I'm missing Hong Kong. It's been nearly a month since I was there and I sometimes think I can still hear it. Indeed it is a busy place. The pace is faster than New York, faster than London, and certainly faster than Taipei. People are always moving at top speed. Financial analysts overtake tourists; schoolchildren bypass workmen; shoppers circle around the elderly. In the two weeks I was there, I became quite familiar with the city's wonderfully logical MTR system, the streets heading up to the Mid-levels, the quaint shops and restaurants of Soho, and some of freshest food this set of teeth has sunk into.

Catching Jen Leo: Nana Chen Interviews Prize-Winning Travel Editor, Writer and Starlet

Have you read the Jen Leo interview yet? It's not too late. Not yet. In it she talks about how she got started, the inevitable struggle, her book tours, and on the more personal side: managing a relationship with a career that keeps her away from home. Yet, Jen does it. Read how the prize-winning travel editor, writer and starlet got started in this very competitive travel writing industry.

Chattahoochee. Say that again.

Chatta..What? It's Chattahoochee River, the river I grew up near. In Atlanta no one would blink if you said you went to Chattahoochee River this weekend and plan to go to Lake Allatoona the next. But this same sentence has made me a victim of saliva sprays. We won't say who. Returning to Atlanta briefly last fall, I had to visit the park where I once made booby traps. I was really pleased to see that they now have a boat rental center. Of course I had to give it a try. You pay about USD25.00/hour and, trust me, an hour of moving yourself around in circles can be quite tiring.

Taipei Garlic Chive Turnovers

Lucky me. I live just down the street from a food vendor who sells these garlic chive turnovers. The owners wheel their "shop" to the sidewalk around 3:00 in the afternoon and usually sell out by 5:30. I always get there early, otherwise there's usually a line.

Zanzibar Fishcakes with Chutney Yogurt Sauce

By Ian Williamson - This recipe is from Zanzibar. As Zanzibar has been a port for many centuries, the cuisine has been influenced by many cultures. It is as difficult to say what is the food like in Zanzibar as it is to say what the food like in Europe. These fish cakes should be made with fresh tuna. Even for those who hate tuna, give these a try as I am sure you will love this dish. These are also ideal as a snack, or remove the peppers and the fish cakes make a great children's meal, as you should eat them with your fingers.

Directions Soak the bread in the milk. Chop the onion and peppers together in the bowl of a food processor. Add the fish and spices and blend to mix. Squeeze the milk out of the bread and add it and the egg to the fish mixture. Seed and finely chop the tomato and mix into the fish mixture by hand.

South Asia Quake Relief Fund

It seems that the world is crashing. Just in the past six months we have seen flooding in Mumbai followed by more flooding, this time in New Orleans, and in just two weeks, our television screens are again filled with desperate images of people suffering from the aftermath of Hurrican Stan in Guatemala, and now the South Asia earthquake. It is simply overwhelming and difficult to catch one's breath. However, with each disaster comes a dire need for supplies. The entire team extends our condolence towards those affected by these tragedies. We encourage you to support relief efforts in order to help the survivors and their families during the critical time ahead. Please visit one of the links below to see how you can support the people and organizations providing relief support. Thank you.

Médecins Sans Frontières Save the Children Care International Unicef World Food Programme Kashmir International Relief Fund Red Cross/Red Crescent

e-Marginalia Interview Debut

Patagonia Expert, Alberto del Castillo

It's finally up! Our new Interview Column is up! And I want to share this excitement with you. With each interview, we did a great deal of research in order to come up with the most in-depth questions possible. Our first guest was Alberto del Castillo. In November last year, I finally made it to Argentina for a reunion with friends I had met in Jaisalmer, India. While staying with them, they introduced me to Patagonia expert mountaineer, Alberto del Castillo. The 43-year-old mountaineer and a father of three is the CEO of Fitz Roy Expediciones & Patagonia Aventura SA. A native of Buenos Aires Province, Del Castillo grew up hiking on the sierra hills of Tandil and prefers steep mountains to skyscrapers.

Knot Right!

During my hike in Patagonia last year, I tripped and fell on my face as I was leaving the campsite. The fall was hard enough for me to remember six months on. I have since discovered that I could have escaped flattening my face and ripping a hole in my favorite pants had I known which knot was best suited for my trek. Gosh. But I’d just accepted until 33 that some people fall down more often than others. I thought the trick was to learn how to fall with ease and grace then wear the bruises like a familiar accessory.

Gore-Tex, Ultrex, Super Microft-What's the Difference?

Right! What’s the difference between plain Polartec, Polartec 200 and Polartec 300? What about Gore-Tex versus Ultrex? Good grief! I’m getting a headache. Maybe you've got one, too? Well, here’s a mini glossary I dug up from the FAQ page of the Textile Outfitters website. It should clear up a few questions. The website provides a great deal of information about outdoor fabrics. Have fun.

FAQ on outdoor fabrics:


Boy in BrazilWhile you are taking time off or trying to decide your next career move, volunteering in a foreign country may be your answer. Through i-to-i, you can experience what it’s like to be a parent by caring for orphaned children. You could also help these children’s communities by taking part in building homes to house them. If you like animals, partake in discovering new ways to protect wildlife and their habitats.
Syndicate content