12.29.2010

Hong Kong: Day 3, Po Toi island

T pointed out that we are seeing Hong Kong the way few people see it. We have our own private tour guides that know all the cool and touristy things we should see. For example, today we went for a sail boat ride to Po Toi island for lunch. How many people do that? Not very many.

Before I get started on Hong Kong: Day 3, I wanted to make a list of things I have noticed here.
1. Hong Kong is a city that stays up late and gets moving slowly in the morning.
2. Pedestrians do NOT have the right of way. And the drivers here, they will take you out.
3. The drivers of the double decker busses all went to race-driver school before they could become bus drivers.
4. Hong Kong is a clean city.
5. In Hong Kong, I will always look like a tourist, no matter how I dress, even though everyone here wears the same color I do; black.
6. The people here do not smile until you smile at them, and they are more than willing to help you if they know english.
7. The food here is incredible and there are a lot of different kinds of cuisine available.
8. Hong Kong is a very safe city and it feels very safe all the time.

I am sure I will add to this list as the days go by, but for now here is the round up of Hong Kong: Day 3.

The day started with a sail boat trip to Po Toi island where we had lunch.



The BEST calamari I have ever had!









The day ended at the American Restaurant in Wan Chai with Beijing cuisine and a Peking Duck.




12.28.2010

Hong Kong: Day 2, Big Buddha & Chi Lin Nunnery

Day 2 in Hong Kong started with a solo run at 5am. I had made it to 10pm the night before and was impressed with myself that I had fought jet-lag for so long. On the flip side I then woke up early and could not go back to sleep so I went for a run.

I love running in a new city. It helps me get the lay of the land. This morning I just ran up the Queens Road. Usually cities are starting to wake up when I go running but Hong Kong seemed to be hitting the snooze button. The buses were just starting to go. The only people I ran into were the people who were folding the newspapers. They all looked at me with straight faces but would smile or wave when I said good morning. I did see two other runners and made it back before the sun came up.

When the crew woke up we headed out for day 2 in Hong Kong.

The morning started with noodles for breakfast...



We then headed to the Big Buddha and Po Lin Monastery. We took the Ngong Ping 360 down from the Big Buddha and my fear of heights did not like the suspended ride very much.











Next we headed to the Chi Lin Nunnery and the Nan Lian Garden. Jay and Andrea had never heard of this one and we loved it.







Then we headed to the Harbor and took a boat tour to see the Symphony of Light laser & light show (8:00-8:20pm every night), projected in concert with music from both sides of the harbor. T made this video.

Holiday Light Show in Victoria Harbor
After the boat tour we had Indian food for dinner (at 10pm!) and then I headed home. It was a packed day!

12.27.2010

Hong Kong: Day 1, The Peak


Images from my first day in Hong Kong

Beijing Airport: 6am

Air China

First Meal in Hong Kong: @ Dim Sum Square





Dragon Fruit

Cooked Food Center: Sheung Wan





At and near Western Market

Andrea and I were waiting for Jay (who went to the bank) and T (who was taking a picture) on this street corner when an older Chinese gentleman came up to Andrea and asked her to read a letter. I was a little jet-lagged and thought this was something similar to the gypsy scam they having going on in Paris but Andrea started to read the letter out loud and it was a letter the man had written to a friend of his. She helped him correct a few mistakes he had. It turned out the man had a few letters and the next one she had him read to her. She helped him with his pronunciation and a little with the grammar. The man was so excited to have run into her. We joked later that he must have been walking up and down the street looking for a white person to help him with his letters. He could not have run into a better person. It was such a cool thing to experience.



The Gang

Scenes from Queens Road









The Peak

12.22.2010

Count down to Hong Kong


On a plane in 74 hours... not that I'm counting...

This carry-on, I already know everything that is going in it. I almost know all the outfits I am going to wear.

Hong Kong, it has been on my mind. A lot. T (who is in Hong Kong now) sends me pictures daily and we talk on Skype (when is is not DOWN) every day/night. He is 16 hours ahead so his day is my night.... and his night is spent exploring Hong Kong.

73 hours and 45 minutes....

12.12.2010

Hong Kong in 2 weeks!!!!!

Ummmm.

I leave for Hong Kong in two weeks. T leaves in 6 days..... It kind of snuck up on me. I haven't put together my travel cheat sheet yet and T wants to know what I want to do/ see so he will wait for me to see it. Guess I need to get that together.....

I can't believe this trip is just around the corner. I need to have a packing list. I need to find a cooking school. I need to find some direction. I need to create my cheat sheet.

My cheat sheet is a small notebook (moleskin) that I use to put everything I need (copy of passport, flight info, addresses and phone numbers and maps) and things I want (fun things from the internet, restaurants to try, spas...) and put them all in one place. I also use this book to keep track of what I do every day on the trip and write notes to myself about pictures and experiences. At the end of my trips I have these notebooks as memory keepers. They are cool.

I am working on the Hong Kong notebook and T found this great website called China-Mike that has a lot of really good information! I might just copy the list China-Mike has here for Hong Kong and call it a night.

12.05.2010

Pomegranate Jelly: 2010


When I was a child, my mother had us make Christmas gifts every year. She was on an ornament kick for a few years (one of them scarred me against sewing for the most of my life) we made candles one year and then she had the bright idea to make pomegranate jelly.

This might not seem like a big deal today because you can BUY pomegranate juice in the store, but back then.... we (my sisters and I) had the pleasure of picking pomegranates off the tree and making everything from scratch. My mom supervised and handled the making of the jelly and the canning. I think we made Pomegranate Jelly for 5 years.... It was quite the process.


Fast forward to Thanksgiving 2010. I walk into my sisters' house and the Little Sister laughs " You won't believe what the Middle Sister wants to do? Call Mom and make Pomegranate Jelly!". WHAT! Why don't you just have us make ornaments? But the Middle Sister talked me into it and this past weekend the three of us headed out to make some Pomegranate Jelly!

Here is how we did it:

Soak the pomegranates. Some people say this makes them easier to work with....

Cut open the pomegranates. I just cut around the edge and then split them with my hands so I can get all the seeds.

Extract Seeds (for hours...)





Squeeze the seeds to get juice.

Add juice to sugar and make Jelly.

Pour Jelly into jars and can.


Or be like me and just eat the seeds.

Because we had tons of them.....

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!