small town laowai

an Americanish life in backwater China


How To

How to clean a faucet (tap) head in China

Several years ago, a friend was over at our apartment in China. When he was washing his hands, he noticed that there was barely any water coming out of the faucet. We had always assumed that the water pressure was… Continue Reading →

How to hack your bathroom into a clothes dryer

Every year around this time, Eric and I are reminded of what is missing from our lives: a clothes dryer. We do pretty well most of the year with drying clothes out on the line in the sun, but the cold,… Continue Reading →

How to dry Ziplocs like an ‘old China hand’

I have a Mother-Earth-slaying confession to make: I do not reuse Ziplocs in the U.S. I know, I know. It’s akin to throwing rocks at kittens or something. But maybe I make up for it while I’m in China, where… Continue Reading →

Care packages

I’ve already gotten a couple of questions about Christmas care packages for this year, for which I’m grateful. I feel bad because postage is so insanely expensive (it’s about $80 for the larger flat rate box, like the one in… Continue Reading →

How to cook frozen jiaozi

Frozen jiaozi (速冻饺子) are some of the only packaged convenience food available in small town China. It’s nice to keep a bag in the freezer “just in case” since it’s not like I’ve got canned soup or boxes of mac… Continue Reading →

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