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  • Asian Food Markets

    Click here to find your nearest Asian Market Most cities with at least 50,000 people in America are bound to have some kind of Asian market. It might be Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese, or any other Asian nationality. That shouldn't be a problem because all Asian food is awesome! The map to the right will help you find your closest Asian food market. Just keep clicking in the area of your city or town to eventually find it! If you are good with Google, you could substitute "usa" with "[your town]" to search faster. I will make a printable Read More
  • The Oily Chinese Food Debate: Healthy or Not?

    Oily Dumplings As the world turns its eyes on China, and all parts of developing Asia, increasing numbers of Westerners are traveling here and getting a taste of it for themselves, literally. As tasty as the dishes may be, foreign guests have started deciding for themselves that Chinese food might just be "a little too oily to be healthy." I'm personally biased and in favor of Asian food traditions, but I do think the argument deserves a fair bout! Round 1, Ding! When friends visit China their #1 concern about the food is sanitation, but also the oiliness. The picture Read More
  • 72 KM on a Ma Ma Chai in 2 Days in Japan

    Shimanami Kaido Bike Path 72 kilometers by bike, in 10 hours. This was the middle point of our journey through Japan. Actually, Jake and I had planned on more hiking and biking than we actually did, but this ride was almost more than we had bargained for! The bike path starts in Hiroshima prefecture, spanning 6 tiny islands and massive suspension bridges, ending in Imabari city on the island of Shikoku. In order to do it all, we rented 2 bikes for 2 days and stayed at a hot spring beach hostel. Covered by orange and lemon groves, Innoshima was Read More
  • Onsen and Hells in Oita

    Me at the Sea Hell The Omatas welcomed us into their home as guests and showed us the most amazing hospitality. Having known Jun and Rika for years in China, and also tutored their kids, I had always promised I would visit their neck of the woods in South-Western Japan. Since this was an opportunity to do that I made sure that our itinerary included a visit to Oita and Beppu, the hot springs capital of Japan. Across Beppu you'll find white plumes of steam rising from cracks in the Earth. On our only full day together, Jun and Rika Read More
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Mt. Aso and Fukuoka - The Final Leg

Mt. Aso from Aso City

After a nice relaxing visit at the Omata’s we had one last big stop on our list – hike an active volcano. Mt. Aso, or Aso San, is known for being a temperamental hot spot that has been smoking for...Read More »


Onsen and Hells in Oita

Me at the Sea Hell

The Omatas welcomed us into their home as guests and showed us the most amazing hospitality. Having known Jun and Rika for years in China, and also tutored their kids, I had always promised I would visit their neck of...Read More »


72 KM on a Ma Ma Chai in 2 Days in Japan

Shimanami Kaido Bike Path

72 kilometers by bike, in 10 hours. This was the middle point of our journey through Japan. Actually, Jake and I had planned on more hiking and biking than we actually did, but this ride was almost more than we...Read More »


That Guilty Feeling in Hiroshima

A-Bomb Dome in Spring

We all have learned about Hiroshima and Nagasaki at some point in History class. But nothing prepares you for what we were about to experience in this city. As I got off the train in downtown Hiroshima I was a...Read More »


The White Heron of Himeji

Himeji Castle and Jake

Himeji Castle, or the white heron, was first built in the 1500s. It has survived 48 transfers of power (both peaceful and not) as well as a bombing by America. Somehow this amazing structure managed to survive after two duds...Read More »


Nara's History and Yamazaki's Whisky

Yummm, biscuits!

You could be forgiven if you thought that we had had enough history lessons after 4 days in Tokyo and Kyoto. But on day 5 we visited Nara, and this was really historical Japan. Only Japan can claim that their first “permanent” national...Read More »


Shrines, Gates, and Geishas in Kyoto

Kyoto is home to the largest concentration of UNESCO world heritage sites in Japan. This one city is a treasure trove of temples, shrines, and old palaces. You can walk in any direction and within 5 minutes you will bump into either a small Shinto shrine or a soccer-field sized...Read More »


Tokyo by Night - Cousins in Japan

The Narita Express

After about 24 hours of domestic and international flying, Jake (my cousin) and I arrived in Narita Airport just before everything closed. Luckily the high you get from descending into a city of lights such as Tokyo gave us the boost...Read More »


Ben Returns to Asia (for a quick visit)

2015 is the year I returned to Asia for a brief visit. After leaving China in 2013, and getting myself fairly settled in the Boston area, I felt the need to reconnect with my Asian roots! Although I’ve loved being home and getting re-acclimated, a piece of my previous life...Read More »


Keeping Costs Down as a Repat

Yes, it is.

Up-rooting everything and moving back to the US was almost as big a change as the initial move out to Asia. And when you make a big move (new job pending) it’s important to keep costs down and stretch your savings. That’s...Read More »


Repatriating from China - Ill Communication

Better than Nothing

It’s August and I’ve been living in Boston since I moved back from China at the end of 2013. A LOT has happened over the course of 9+ months back in America and I thought it was time to check in with AL.ME to...Read More »


Repatriating from China - Half a Year on

It’s July and I’ve been living in Boston since I moved back from China at the end of 2013. A LOT has happened over the course of half a year [back home] and I thought it was time to check in with AL.ME to recap what’s happened and cite the...Read More »


Eating Seaweed Soup for Cancer Prevention

Korean seaweed soup with mussels (Recipe below)

 *This post is dedicated to AL.ME’s #1 fan – Thank you Saba

A few years back I visited a little island off of the coast of Zhuhai (China) and found an elderly couple collecting seaweed. They were...Read More »


The Ultimate List of East Asian Festivals for your Bucket List

Welcome to my list of the major festivals and holidays celebrated across Northeast Asia- Japan, North and South Korea, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, and Mongolia. This will be a continuously updated list as I keep exploring new and interesting festivals that have evolved in the East Asian cultural sphere,...Read More »


What you didn't know about Chinese Food in America...

American or Chinese?

For years I’ve been attempting to explain (and cook) the differences between real Chinese food and American Chinese food. At first, it surprised American friends to discover that the Chinese have never heard of dishes like Crab Rangoon, General Tso’s Chicken,...Read More »


Online Asian Markets and Food Delivery

Whenever I cook for friends and family I’m always asked about the ingredients I use and where to get them. And since visiting an Asian market alone can be a little overwhelming for some, I decided to put a short introduction together for buying my most common ingredients...Read More »


1/3 of World's Cigarettes Smoked in China

Two guys smoking

A blog that totes the wonders of Asianliving should really offer a fair slice of the other side: the health problems suffered in Asia. Suffice it to say the global news media frequently reminds us of the air quality issues across China,...Read More »


Red Envelopes for Better Health Care

Red Cash – courtesy NPR

My colleague’s wife had a baby last Christmas in a Chinese hospital in Zhuhai. It was a typical scenario. Meet your doctor in advance and decide whether to have a natural birth or a c-section. In this case,...Read More »


Cutting the cord: Making the switch to Internet-Only

This past summer my roommate and I made the switch from over-priced cable (in this case it was RCN) to Over-the-Air (OTA) television and Apple TV. Our major concerns were related to a potential lack of programming, specifically live sports and show-specific channels like AMC. You might be thinking:...Read More »


The Timberman Triathlon - Swimming with the Fishies

Last week on August 15, 2015, I competed in one of the biggest physical challenges of my life, the Timberman Triathlon! And although it was my first endurance race ever, it was surprisingly quick. A lot happened: from my “swimming with the fishies” moment to the chain derailment/near car collision, to having...Read More »


My First Sprint Triathlon Experience

On August 15th, 2015 I’ll dive head first into the Timberman Triathlon in Gilfid, New Hampshah! Although this is a “sprint” triathlon I anticipate a competitive event: 0.3 mile swim, 15 mile bike ride, and a 5K. I think the triathlon was created for those who...Read More »


Asia's Busiest Airport at a Glance

Beijing airport, busiest in Asia!

For the second year in a row, Beijing Capital International Airport ranked number two in the list of the world’s busiest airports, handling 83.7 million passengers last year and securing its position as the airport with the highest level...Read More »


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About Asianliving

Thanks for stopping by Ben's blog about culture, health, and travel from his experiences across Asia.

To get in touch, please email: ben[at]asianliving[dot]me.

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