Move over Paul Theroux There s a new China train expert and her name is Cecilie Gamst Berg It s been years since I ead Riding the Iron Rooster but I don t Berlayar di Pamor Badik remember laughing as much as I did whileeading Gamst Berg s memoir Don t Joke on the Stairs As a former Hong Kong esident and China traveler I found myself agreeing with Gamst Berg s assessment of China at every turn She first stepped foot in China in 1988 and has made. Learn Chinese the natural way from a Norwegian Join Cantonese fundamentalist Cecilie Gamst Berg as she journeys through the non stop surrealism.
Dozens and dozens of trips back there since settling in Hong Kong some twenty years ago I love her comparisons of the China of 1988 and the China of today She covers all the hot topics in China now drugs one child policy polygamy corruption issues with Xinjiang Tibet and Inner Mongolia etc I never thought I d laugh so much eading about Mao and Gamst Berg s chilling description of the Great Helmsman She s so witty and sarcasti. That is today's China Traveling by camel sleeper bus and train across the deserts of Xinjiang through the backwoods of Tibet over the mountain.
C and honest it s a wonder people don t write about these topics as openly as she does I also enjoyed Münchhausen's Pigtail, or Psychotherapy Reality reading about her mission to save Cantonese I have to admit that I chose to learn Mandarin over Cantonese some 20 years ago because I thought Mandarin would be useful That might be true but Cantonese is definitely authentic Iecommend this book to anyone who s interested in China Hong Kong its languages and its social issues. S of Sichuan to the outlying islands of Hong Kong Cecilie shows how China is not only the fastest changing place on earth but also the most fun.