Black is the New Pink

I just came back from Bangkok. Usually the city is a swirl of color, from the taxis to tuk tuks. But now, it’s black black. Since King Rama IX died in October, a year long memorial started. Mind you, the love for this king was fierce. If you stepped on a piece of money with his picture on it, you could […]

Chinese School

A friend invited Hamburger Laoshi for “Show and Tell” today. She’s an English teacher at a Chinese Public School on the north side of Kunming. Four Thousand students, forty crammed into every class, all wearing the same uniform. The students learn by rote memorization. Check out this video clip of them “getting their English on”. I talked a bit about […]

Cheers to a pint.

Tears came to my Dad’s eyes as he answered the phone that Saturday morning.  Only one person would be calling at that time. “Hello,  Mr. Sinsabaugh,” the perky voice started, “How would you like a new kidney today?” “Very much, “the words got stuck by the lump in his throat. ” That would be better than watching the game.” As I happily […]

I very vrery miss you

The end of the school year is always moving. But when a 6 foot third grade teacher moves back to Australia,  he leaves quite a hole in his classroom. I helped his three of his youngest students put together a short film. David, the smiley 9 year old who keeps on forgetting his lines, tugs my heart every time. Only students who love their […]

One star.

I just came back from a quick trip to Vietnam. The trip to Vietnam from my abode in Kunming was about the same schlepp as from Chicago to Charlevoix,  Michigan. There aren’t any McDonald’s to stop at along the way,  but a lot of fun sights that made this get-away memorable as well as reasonable.   The entire adventure costing […]

Hong Kong

It was over thirty years ago,  the term after I broke my back skydiving, and the height of the now forgotten Falkland Island Crisis. My life was in a bit  of a crisis, too. I took a break from MSU and studied for a term in London, being mindful to call my parents collect every Sunday assure them I was […]

Golden, Fushcia and Leopard Print Temple

Monday was the fifteenth day of the new Chinese Year,   which is also known as the Lantern Festival. Fireworks are  replaced with colorful incense …. and floating lanterns are released in the sky. This caused a colorful block of traffic on my way to school,    as I take a short cut thru the Golden Temple (in Kunming, China) to get there.   The buses had to wait […]

Chinese Diners and Dives

I did the math. Eight seven thousand five hundred.  That’s the number of servings I prepared last year at Jesus People USA,  feeding  three hundred and fifty funky folks each night, five days a week.  That doesn’t include the meals that end up at Uptown shelters or the folks at Tent City. Or the lumpy grits that no one would […]

LIGHTS, SMART PHONE, ACTION!

After a two week  course in Western Culture, my students had to create videos about their favorite experiences in Kunming. Final projects have come along way since making dioramas out of shoe boxes and popsicle sticks. So what did I learn? Other than how to upload a video shot on a bootleg Chinese phone onto Google,  I learned this: Shut up […]

China’s Got Talent

What could be more adorable than a Chinese five year old dressed up as Curly the cowboy? The one re-enacting a dinosaur battle. It was the Chine Speaks English competition in Kunming,  and I got to be a judge for the shortie division ( four to eight year-olds). Participants were judged on their ability to speak English,  not if they could comprehend […]