Asia Articles

A Tale of Two Countries I: Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan

June 3, 2016 9:00 am Published by 1 Comment

Title Image: By Abbaszade656 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons The Central Asian countries of Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan share many similarities. However, as a tourist, I was struck by their differences. Note: For some, Azerbaijan counts as being in the Caucasus, along with Georgia and Armenia. However,... read more

On the Road in Uzbekistan

May 27, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

The sixth leg of my around-the-world tour is Uzbekistan. Note: the fifth leg was Azerbaijan. See my blogs: Azerbaijan I and Azerbaijan II. Why Uzbekistan? I can’t really say. I think the names Tashkent and Samarkand drew me. Also, the complications of ticketing an around the world trip made going... read more

Azerbaijan II – A Complex Political Situation

May 23, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Photo credit: teuchterlad via VisualHunt / CC BY I’ve had Azerbaijan on the brain since doing the research for Chapter Five of Languages in the World. How History, Culture and Politics Shape Language with Phillip M. Carter (Wiley-Blackwell, 2016). Chapter Five is entitled “The Development of Writing in the Litmus... read more

Azerbaijan I – A Lovely Architectural Surprise

May 16, 2016 9:00 am Published by 2 Comments

Title Photo credit: Stefano Bolognini via Visualhunt / CC BY-NC I left Malaysia, and after an 11-hour flight and a 4-hour layover in Istanbul followed by another 3-hour flight, I arrived in Azerbaijan. Although I was very tired and jet-lagged, I immediately perked up at sight of Baku, the capital. Baku... read more

Kuala Lumpur and Melaka, Malaysia

May 13, 2016 9:00 am Published by 1 Comment

The fourth stop in my trip around the world is Malaysia, landing in Kuala Lumpur. The first thing you need to know is that kuala means ‘confluence of two rivers, estuary’ and lumpur means ‘muddy’. Here I am (in the photo on the right) at the muddy confluence. Note: Everywhere in Asia... read more

Globalization Through The Lens of Malaysia

May 9, 2016 9:00 am Published by 2 Comments

Left: Kuala Lumpur’s Twin Towers seen from the Traders Hotel where I stayed. Note: the lunch I had at the space needle in the middle left will be the subject of a rant. Here I outline the way globalization is woven into Malaysia and the way Malaysia weaves itself into globalization.... read more

Further Observations on Japan

May 6, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Note: see my previous blog Ten Things To Love About Japanese Culture. Here is another listicle about Japan. This time the observations are random and in no particular order: 10. T-shirts/sweatshirts. Many people wear T-shirts or sweatshirts with names of U.S. states on them, like South Dakota or Maryland. Every... read more

Kinosaki-onsen – a Japanese Spa Town

May 2, 2016 4:24 pm Published by 1 Comment

Note: In my blog Ten Things to Love About Japanese Culture, I put the Japanese onsen (communal bath) as #1. Making good on my own rating that the onsen is the height of Japanese culture, Gerard and I went to Kinosaki-onsen, a charming spa town on a northwestern coast of... read more