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The Author

Victoria Peak in Hong Kong, China

Ashley is a graduate student focused on 18th- and 19th-century French art, studies of the ‘Other,’ and cross-cultural exchange between France and Asia.  Upon completing her undergraduate degree in art history, international advertising, and French language and literature, she moved to Shanghai, China.  Currently back in the States to attend graduate school, she continues to travel and is constantly planning the next adventure at home or abroad.  She wears many hats, and La Vie en China? serves as her platform to share travel tips, book reviews, photos, and any other tid-bits that come up along the way.

Dear Readers,

Welcome to La Vie en China?! Don’t get the name?  “La Vie en Rose,” a popular song by American jazz musician Louis Armstrong about the joys of Paris, translates into English as “life through rose-colored glasses.” What does this have to do with me?  Or, more importantly with China?

Like many American girls, I grew up fascinated by France: its beautiful language, elegant women, and rich culture. In college my childhood fascination bloomed into full-blown francophilia, and I become engrossed in the world of 19th-century French art history. What wasn’t there to love– the Impressionists, the flaneur, cafe culture, La Belle Epoque, Montmartre? As part of my undergraduate studies, I spent two summers in Paris: my first overseas trips.  The first summer, I studied abroad at the Louvre Museum, and the second, I traveled solo using an apartment across from the famous Les Deux Magots cafe as my home-base while conducting research on my thesis. Though continually focused on French art history, I also have a deep-seated interest in Asian–particularly Chinese– history, languages, and cultures.  This unexplored passion led me to take a huge leap in 2009 and move to Shanghai, China.  This blog began as a space to chronicle my adventures while teaching English in ‘the Middle Kingdom’ for a year.  Now, it lives on to document my current exploits, which include frequent trips back to China and elsewhere in Asia to visit WWW, as well as getting to know my new home as a graduate student in North Carolina.

For me, a life filled with travel, history, and most importantly other cultures is “la vie en rose.”  La Vie en China? (or “Life in China?”) allows me the privilege of sharing  my adventures with you, as well as travel tips, book recommendations, and perhaps a little inspiration for you to embark on your own journey either as an arm-chair traveler or a real-life nomad!

Cave kayaking, Krabi Province, Thailand

Thanks for reading, and please come again!

Happy travels ~Ashley

You can email me at ashleybruckbauer at gmail dot com.

Click here for a list of my other writings.


Disclaimer: The ideas and opinions expressed on this site are solely my own and do not reflect those of any other individual, organization, or company.  Additionally, any reviews given reflect my honest personal experiences and opinions and are unpaid and unsponsored.  Finally, all photos on the site are my own unless otherwise noted and are the property of the site not to be used or reproduced without written permission.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. Julia permalink
    August 23, 2009 12:06 pm

    I am so happy that you have set up your blog so I can follow all of your adventures in China! I am confident that you will be a wonderful and inspiring teacher for young children (even if kindergarten children aren’t the ideal students). I am so proud of you for getting this job and being able to explore your passions in Chinese and art history. I’m so happy to have one of my very best friends entering academia as well! Be safe and have fun!!!

  2. February 13, 2010 8:57 pm

    This is an AWESOME blog. I absolutely love the photography. I am definitely following this one in my feed reader. Thanks!

  3. February 17, 2010 12:43 am

    Hi there! Do you use a VPN to update your blog or do you use e-mail to post?

  4. July 14, 2010 12:33 pm

    Hi! I would like to swap links with your site. My blog is I’ve already added you under my “Links” section on my page. Thank you!
    I’m also looking for guest bloggers. Please let me know if you’d be interested in being featured on Travelocafe.
    Regards, Laura

  5. October 10, 2010 8:56 pm

    Dr. Katherine Bolman here. I am concerned that the teaching of art history is going to be lost to the schools of today. I have therefore begun to create a web site. This site starts with Prehistoric art around the world, 5,000 BCE around the world and I have some of Early Civilizations done.

    I would like to work with one or more history teachers and their students.

    the website is
    If you like what you see and have any interest in collaboration my information is
    Skype Name Katherine Bolman

    When you go to the website you will see Meet Katherine where you can learn about me and see some of my work.

    I would be delighted if you would contact me.
    Aloha from Hawaii

  6. July 11, 2013 11:59 pm

    We love your blog… cheers!

    • Ashley Bruckbauer permalink*
      July 12, 2013 5:59 am

      Thanks so much; I’m glad you are enjoying it!

  7. Salam permalink
    April 1, 2014 10:55 pm

    i am fun of your blog, have you facebook acount ? its good idea to follow you thre 🙂


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