Hong Kong part 2 - The Shopping and Lunar New Year


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January 30th 2009
Published: January 31st 2009
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...and then the shopping began. There are malls and there are malls. Hong Kong has both of them. We have spent much time in the pinball game of walking the malls and streets with millions of other locals to find suitable clothing for work and for a cooler climate.

Yes we have been watching the weather in our final destination of Jinan China and found the need for some less tropical clothing! There are outlet stores here which because of the lesser amount of cold days have been inundated with overstocks of arctic travel gear. Dave bought a 90% down 10% feather Jacket for $460HKD we priced this in Aus before we left at over $500AUD that is 5 x the price and some thermal underwear for those snuggly nights of -3degC.....HHhmmmmm!

It does disappoint a little that all the malls have the same stores, the same clothes and the same overinflated prices as you would find anywhere in the world. The real bargains come with the small independent stores. Plenty of good buys.

We found the Avenue of Stars here with some known to us like Jackie Chan, Jet Li, and Chow Yung Fat, but most of the others were from local cinema oH! i forgot Bruce Lee, he is a biggy! It is a great esplanade you could just sit here for hours and watch the harbour traffic but we are off to the space museum and the astrology museum which turned out to be very interesting. I did not know that HK has had so much to do with space exploration and they are a big hub for all sorts of stuff.

Well today is the 25th January, it is the night before Chinese new year and all through the house....yada. ..yada...yada! The day of Chinese new year is a day for visiting the immediate family, tomorrow they will visit the extended family and the day after finally celebrate the new year.

Now it is the 26th of January....HAPPY AUSTRALIA DAY EVERYONE! Tonight we will see a Chinese parade sort of like our Christmas parade and tomorrow the fireworks Woot woot!. As you can imagine most things are closed during this period so we are fairly limited to what we can do. I guess we will find a good coffee shop, kick back and relax and enjoy the festivities as they occur...once again it is a hard life! From our window there we see a huge construction project of a new bridge spanning from the island to the mainland. Each morning I wake up and look at it, I would like to show you a good picture of it but from our window there is a lot of cloud or smog (It is not clear). I think it is cloud across the bay, there are ferries, fast and slow, passing our window, even today it is a busy place.

Today is the 27th of January, the parade last night was a.....well how to say....a parade! I don't know if we left before the exciting part but for me the best bit was getting there and finding a space in the middle of 1-2 million people (Bees in a hive - a BIG hive with many bees). The floats were well decorated but it was sparse and this left you wondering after each float passed if there was another. Looking forward to the fireworks tonight. Just chillin' today again. We were watching some video clips on our target destination Jinan yesterday and we saw the clothing they wore so there will be some more shopping before we leave essentials like long thermal underwear! are on the list.

FIREWORKS, are always good when the finale is a burning barge! Yes the fireworks in Hong Kong are the best we have seen! Brilliant colours, huge bangs, 23min's of intense Ooooo's and AAAaaaahhhhh! and a couple of Oh...Ow's to boot. To capture it I took over 500 snap shots, I like the rapid shoot feature on my camera, Lynne has some too so it will take a while to pick the cream of the crop. I took some videos also and will upload them to a site yet to be determined, probably facebook. Did I mention a burning boat? Yea I can't tell from my movie but I think the boat caught fire just before a large shell exploded on the deck and made the situation worse. The trusty Hong Kong harbour patrol were on the scene and quenched the inferno within seconds. Cooooool! It wasn't as crowded as the parade because everyone had there favourite spot and they were spread out over a much larger distance.

These are the final days before we start work in Jinan and we are using them as such. Our time clock has shifted since we arrived in Asia we are staying up later and sleeping in, I have to set my clock to wake me or we will miss the breakfast call. Lynne has downloaded a game from the Apple site called Bubble Bazinga and she is hooked. I think we may need to get professional help with this! By the way she is ranked 100th in the world for this online game.

Now we wait. On the 1st we fly to meet our new destiny, yesterday we spent much of the day in a coffee shop just looking at a computer screen catching up on some necessary stuff for China (well that is my story!) and today will be confirmation of all the final details. WE ARE EXCITED, yes i did not think i would get excited about work ever again but i am. Something completely new! A new land and we will be helping to shape the new culture...that is scary! Lynne is bursting, listless nights (which means i don't get to sleep either) and early mornings.

This also means that this is our last travel blog, our next one will be WORKING IN CHINA. We hope?

Thank you to all who have followed our travels and be sure to follow our exploits as we cross cultures with the Chinese!



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11th February 2010

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8th October 2010
...and some slept

helow
20th October 2010
Some light in an otherwise dull parade

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