Category Archives: Asia

Trump To Taiwan

The Communist army under Mao defeated the Nationalists and on 7 December 1949 Chiang Kai-shek ordered the evacuation of his government, the gold reserves, priceless art, and his KMT army to the southern island of Taiwan. The USA and its allies recognized Taiwan as the Republic of China, however Nixon’s trips to Peking normalized diplomatic […]

BERENTI MISTAH by Peter Nolan Smith

In 1991 I bought a round-the-world ticket for $1399 from Pan Express. The owner set up a magical itinerary. “New York – LA – Hawaii – Biak – Bali – overland to Jakarta.” John was reciting the trip from memory. He sold hundreds of these tickets every year. “What do you mean ‘overland to Jakarta’?” […]

NOTHING BETTER THAN PIZZA by Peter Nolan Smith

Back in 1995 I left the USA after the death of my younger brother. My plan was to visit the holiest places in Asia to expiate Michael’s sins. I was a non-believer, but felt this pilgrimage would help his soul on the other side. By late August I was residing in old Yunnan city of […]

Monster Wipe-Out

In 1996 Richie Boy flew out to Bali. I met him at the airport. His baggage consisted of a knapsack and three surfboards. “Why so many boards?” “Because one of them is for you.” Richie Boy had come halfway around the world to surf Kuta, Ulu Watu, and G-Land. “Me.” My surfing skills were taxed […]

APOCALYPSE NOW AND THEN by Peter Nolan Smith

I tried to enlist in the Marines soon after my 16th birthday. My mother wouldn’t sign the papers. The 1968 Tet offensive dented her belief in the final outcome of the Vietnam Conflict, as the fallen were airlifted home in coffins and the wounded filled the VA hospitals. Discharged soldiers were portrayed by the newspapers […]