So What Is a “Fat Gwailo”?

disclaimer: after reading my first 6 posts my wife and daughter are making fun of and telling me I have waaaaaayyyyy to many spelling errors to be a blogger. So to appease them I want to let you know that I am NOT a professional writer and I was not a literature sterling scholar in high school.  I am not writing this blog to have to proof read each post. With that said if you can live with a few grammatical errors, please continue to read, I can promise you a few laughs and a little education on what life is like living in rural China.

It’s not hard for me the stand out in China. I am a 6’4 295 lb American, from Utah, I stick out here like corn dog at a health fair. I see that a lot of bloggers have a cool avatar so I created one for myself in Photoshop (which was basically my real face on a cartoon fat buddha’s body), and decided to start taking this more serious that I broke down and spent $11, on,  on a more professional looking avatar, and there you have it posted above. Pretty proud of it, now I am legit.  Looks like me kind-a-sorta.


In Hong Kong the slang term for an American (or anyone white for that matter) is a “gwailo”, or “white ghost”. It refers to the skin color and some people find it offensive. Me, not so much. Put the word “Fat” in front of it and that pretty much sums up what I am. A “Fat White Ghost”.  From ’93-’95 I lived in Hong Kong and this was my nickname among my local friends. So there you go, if you travel to Hong Kong and you hear someone refer to you as a “gwailo” you now know why. Just smile back or give them a fist bump, they will love it.

I was born and raised in a suburb of Salt Lake City, Utah. At the ripe age of 19 I served a 2 year LDS mission in Hong Kong and fell in love with the culture. Shortly after returning home I met my wife at school. She was born in mainland, China and moved to Hong Kong when she was 13. We both have college degrees and have been entrepreneurs for most of our lives. We have 3 kids, 2 older kids off to school and 1 younger which is 8 and gets to travel with us. We have a few real estate ventures in Salt Lake City and Las Vegas and a business in Salt Lake that makes custom fortune cookies and ships them all over the US. I am a workaholic who finally listened to my wife and turned the reigns of the company over to a few of our employees and we decided to pack up and head to China. We first arrived in Hong Kong about a month ago and now reside in Longyuan, China. A mid-sized city in the Fujian Province, which is close to where my wife grew up. Been here for about 2 weeks now and I love it. I am fluent in Cantonese and am trying my hand at Mandarin Chinese. It’s frustrating and hard, but it’s the universal chinese language (unlike Cantonese, which is mainly spoken in Hong Kong and Guangzhou) so if I want to survive here in China I need to learn it. Mandarin can be used pretty much anywhere you travel in China. Cantonese and Mandarin are like English and Spanish, some words similar but not enough to actually speak or understand with any significance. Hopefully in the next few months I can actually communicate with someone.


There are a few goals I have set for myself in this blog. Make 1 post a day and make the content interesting, like the best way to fly to Hong Kong, what is durian?, and only use organic material. The pictures you will see here are 100% taken by me and the experiences are real. I am not a tourist and live everyday life like a local. I will let you know whats great and what’s crummy about China. Tricks I learn while traveling abroad and let you know what to avoid. It’s 9:00pm on a Sunday night in China and above is the view from our apartment.(with me standing there proudly after successfully washing and hanging our clothes to dry) We are on the 20th floor of a, 2 bedroom 2 bath, middle class high-rise that is in rural China. If you are traveling to China in the near future or just have some questions about every day life in China leave me a note in the comment section. I can promise a quick response. Or click the links below to follow me on social media, I try to keep everything up to date.

There you go, you made through all grammatical errors, and to my wife and daughter READ THE DISCLAIMER!

Cheap Flights to Hong Kong
How We Retired Early
Will My Cellphone Work Abroad?
Things To Do In Hong Kong 
What Is Durian?
How Fast Are Bullet Trains?
Breakfast Foods In China

 When I am not blogging my real job is a fortune cookie maker. We make fortune cookies, with your personalized message inside. Visit us at or!


7 thoughts on “So What Is a “Fat Gwailo”?

  1. I am actually quite interested in this blog. I will be checking back to see what you and your wife have been up to. I think it is really fascinating to see how other cultures live from the same perspective as your own so you being an American will actually help me understand everything better. Must be amazing to be living there.


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