Archive for the ‘Photo Essay’ Category


Walking along the bank of Nile in Luxor or Aswan, you would be asked a hundredth time a day if you want to ride a felucca, the traditional wooden single-mast sailing boat, which is still commonly used in upper Egypt and Sudan. Powered by the wind, feluccas glide graciously in a zig-zagging way across the Nile River. Piloting a felucca seems easy enough, as our felucca captain Abdul appears to be half-reclining in a relaxing post most of the time, but when my sister and I take turns to sail the boat, we realize it requires quite a bit of strength.

An oar is attached to the rear of the boat, which would control the mast and the direction of the sail; to steady the mast against the wind power in order to move in the desired direction do need some strength, the reclining post is actually to press your feet on one side of the boat for support, and place your back against the oar, so that you use your whole body to steady the mast, it is quite tiring, and after just about 20-minute piloting the felucca, I have backache for two days!




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23 Dec 2011, Friday, Egyptians of all walks of life converged at the Tahrir Square in Downtown Cairo to demonstrate; some speak up against the brutality of military personnel against a veiled woman during the previous week’s protest (now famously known as the blue bra woman); some demand leaders with affiliation to the old Mubarak regime to step down; some call for a fairer and just political system, etc…..

The mood at the square is calm, no sign of clashes, in fact, it feels a little carnival-like, and street vendors are doing brisk business….




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A few hundred years old minaret in the old city of Khiva.

Here are some shots from my last year’s Central Asia trip, on the magically medieval-looking ancient towns in Uzbekistan. If you stare hard enough, you might just spot flying carpet among the minarets 🙂

Samarkand, Bukhara, Khiva – these names invoke images of the 1001 Arabian Night in my mind. Islamic architecture is one of the wonders in these ancient towns, but after visiting a few of these historical cities, I regretted to have sticking to the well-trodden famous cities tour route, they all somehow look and feel rather alike – welcome to the reconstructed glory cities, in a film-set mode….

Uzbek traditional hats hanging for sale on the old city wall of Khiva.


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库车卖食品的巴扎里有很多馕摊子,是当地的主食。A naan trader in a food bazaar in Kucha.


I love visiting the bazaar in every town I’ve been to in Xinjiang, for the bazaars are often the liveliest place in town.  

Like many places in Central Asia region, the bazaars in Xinjiang are organized according to trade – one section for clothing, one section for agricultural produce, one section for jade and jewelry, another section for daily appliances…..  



有的小地方的大巴扎只有一条街,却还是会分段来摆摊子,商品分门别类在不同的路段出现,井井有条,让顾客可以很容易地规划自己采购的路线。 (more…)

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Legend has it that the Euphrates Poplar tree could live for three thousands years, and when it dies, it would not tumple for another three thousand years, and when it does collapse, it would not decompose for another three thousand years….. 

In Xinjiang, along the 70th km of the Taklamakan Desert Highway, there’s a wild poplar forest, what appear to be “dead” trees stand tall among the green ones….   


在新疆塔克拉玛干沙漠公路上地70公里处附近,就有一大片的野生胡杨林。即便传说可能有点夸大,但是胡杨可以在相对缺水的沙滩中生长得极其茂盛,也还真是不简单。 (more…)

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当他升空后,更多临近的村民都跑到山头来一睹奇观,连丹霞地貌售门票的工作人员也找了过来,大概是想如何才能向这位飞进去景区“逃票”的游客索取费用吧。 (more…)

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