I Was a Chinese Helpline’s Number One Caller. I Had a Problem.
“Thank-you-for-calling-the-Shanghai-Call-Center-how-can-I-help-you?” The “magic number” helped foreigners like me get by without learning the language. But I didn’t feel at home in China until I finally hung up the phone.
Italy’s Crumbling Motorways: How The Genoa Bridge Collapse Exposed A National Scandal
The state of Italian motorways is a national scandal. There are about twenty badly-damaged motorway bridges in Italy currently under investigation. There are also 200 illegal tunnels, which don’t comply with European standards and 1,000 viaducts which haven’t been monitored for years.
How Hong Kong Is Home To The Crazy Rich And The Mega Poor
Hong Kong has more ultra-rich people than any other country, yet 1 in 5 people still live in poverty. SBS Dateline’s Marc Fennell asks why the gap between rich and poor is so extreme.
Young Girls Force-Fed For Marriage In Mauritania
Some Mauritanian communities believe that the fatter girls look the wealthier and more attractive they appear to men. Sahar Zand meets the families force feeding their young girls a 9,000 calorie-a-day diet during a brutal “feeding season” in Mauritania.
The Most Extreme Railway In The World
At 430 miles long, the formidable Mauritania Railway, nicknamed the “backbone of the Sahara,” boasts some of the longest and heaviest trains in the world. Its journey begins in Zouerat, Mauritania, and runs across the searing desert to the port city of Nouadhibou, on Africa’s Atlantic coast.
Mining For Gold In The World’s Highest Permanent Human Settlement
High up in the Andes, La Rinconada is a place where people go to seek whatever fortune they can muster in the gold mines nestled there. Photographer James Whitlow Delano describes it as a place with no running water or sewage system, populated by about 30,000 to 50,000 inhabitants.
Just A Moment: Seoul Street Photography Series
Chris da Canha is a skateboarder and photographer from Durban, South Africa, living in Seoul, South Korea. He works in fashion and editorial photography and spends his free time shooting the streets.
Why China Is Building Islands In The South China Sea
China is building islands in the South China Sea and its causing disputes among the other nations in the region; Malaysia, the Philippines, Brunei, Vietnam, and Indonesia. To truly understand the international conflicts and trends shaping our world you need a big-picture view.
Donald Trump’s Worst Deal
The President helped build a hotel in Azerbaijan that appears to be a corrupt operation engineered by oligarchs tied to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. The Trump Tower Baku never opened.
How The English Language Is Taking Over the Planet
English is everywhere, and everywhere, English dominates. From inauspicious beginnings on the edge of a minor European archipelago, it has grown to vast size and astonishing influence. Almost 400m people speak it as their first language; a billion more know it as a secondary tongue. Is there any point in resisting?
Flat 13: Facing Down Apartheid
This is the story of the apartment in downtown Johannesburg that, between the late 1940s and early 1960s, became a hub of resistance against apartheid.
The Magical Realism Of Santa Cruz Del Islote – Photo Essay
Santa Cruz del Islote is a magical place. A population of up to 1,200 live on an island the size of two football fields in the middle of the Caribbean, making it one of the most densely populated islands on the planet.
How Africa Can Get Rich
Africa is changing so fast, it is becoming hard to ignore. In the short term, the continent faces many problems, but in the long term, it could rival China’s economic might. By the end of this century, Africa is set to play a much bigger role in world affairs. The Asian growth miracle is likely to slow Africa’s rapid rise could be next.
How And Why The Great Wall Of China Was Really Built
The Great Wall of China was built 2,200 years ago out of military necessity: to combat the Mongolian ancestors of Genghis Khan. Its construction was a marvel of military engineering.
Things Are Changing At The World’s Oldest Hotel
Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan is not just the world’s oldest hotel, but the world’s oldest still-operating business. Or at least, that’s one way of looking at it. But things are changing here, just like they always have.
When Digital Nomads Come To Town
Cities from Canggu to Medellín are welcoming tech workers, but locals complain they’re being priced out. Nomads cluster in safe and prosperous neighborhoods. The income differential between the nomads and the local professional class is immense. The result is runaway price inflation.
They Came From Outer Finland: The Town Where Everyone Saw UFOs
Photographer Maria Lax comes from a northern Finnish town where UFO sightings were common – so she set about looking for answers. “I’m from a small town in northern Finland surrounded by a vast, sparsely populated wilderness. Most pass through the town without ever knowing it was a hotspot for UFO sightings in the 1960s.”
Inside The Bizarre Subculture That Lives To Explore Chernobyl’s Dead Zone
As the first generation of Ukrainians born after the Chernobyl tragedy comes of age, a small subculture of them is now doing the unthinkable: defying government prohibitions and illegally entering the highly radioactive Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, or “Dead Zone”—for fun.
You Can Hike To A 1950s Plane Wreck In Alaska’s Talkeetna Mountains
The Bomber Glacier is aptly named. It comes from the wreckage of a TB-29 Superfortress that crashed on the glacier at the end of a training mission in 1957, killing six of the 10 crewmembers. The airplane, strewn across the ice, has sat where it touched down for more than 60 years ago.
Hicamp: Camping & Glamping Everywhere
Hicamp is an app that lets you book unique camping experiences on farms, ranches, vineyards and public parks across the country. Find undiscovered, one-of-a-kind camping destinations or visit tried and true staples.
Kiribati: A Drowning Paradise In The South Pacific
UN estimates indicate that Kiribati could disappear in just 30 or 40 years. That’s because the average elevation is less than two meters above sea level. And some of the knock-on effects of climate change have made the situation more difficult.