Thursday, June 25, 2009


Being in Hong Kong has it's benefits.. being such a huge city there is no shortage of things to do, I get to eat some real good and YUMMY food, aaaand I can go on any website I want!! It's true, I'm online after the day is done and freely browsing without any fear of being monitored. I can say China and Tibet and Taiwan and Tianenman square all that I like without worrying about someone turning off my internet connection or banging on my door. China. China. China. China.

With that out of my system I can move on. Phew.

After a few weeks of cooling it with the traveling, we both agree that it's really not good for us to be home as often as we have been. Too much work, too much rain, too much humidity.. it really gets to ya and plays on the nerves. So, we have decided to plan a few trips in our near future.

As many will already know, I will be in Vietnam this week visiting Linh. July is booked for Beijing and Xi'an to see some super important cultural cities in China. Sept is planned for Thailand and Japan. It's always good to have something to look forward to. Keeps things positive.. like a light at the end of the tunnel.

With that said, lately has been pretty quiet. It's rainy season here and with temperatures well into the 30's plus humidity and torrential rains, well, it doesn't offer much in the area of FUN.

This has been a concern lately considering it's been happening just down the street from the hotel that we stay in each time we visit Hong Kong.. I mean, what's the deal?

I really had no idea how tropical the weather here is.. mango trees! We're not in Jamaica, we're in China!

Party Patio
This is a treat. With as many photos that I post on facebook, it's true that I have an entire selection that don't make it public, this being one of them.... Marking the end of a hard week the boys have enough to drink to all participate in the broom/mop guitar band.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Rain Rain Rain Rain Rain.
Rainy season is upon us in Cheeeeena as it seems. It looks as if 4 out of 7 days per week have not just rain but thunderstorms. Loud, crackling, bright thunderstorms.
But rather than a storm that arrives, does the damage, and carries on.. it's more of a whole day and night event. The thunder comes and proceeds to storm followed by a short break and then in the blink of an eye it begins again- full on thunder and lightning.

Everyone here wears plastic flip flops so that the expected soaker really doesn't affect them at all. I made the mistake of going out in my sneakers only to arrive home with slushy feet. Ya Niek!

I will experiment with lightning photography since the opportunity is now. Better get myself a tripod and gather my patience.... first efforts below (through the window)


Sunday, June 7, 2009

Cooking the Chinese way

Rice with marinated beef and vegetables.

1) Marinating the beef with soy sauce, garlic, rice vinegar, sesame oil and sesame seeds.

2) Parboil the broccoli, green peppers and carrots.

3) Mix the cornstarch with soy sauce. 4) Prepare the beef stock

5) Saute' meat for 2 minutes and following that the same for the vegetables.

6) Cook the rice 7) Pour the beef stock in with meat and veggies and cover. Allow to steam for one minute. 8) Pour the cornstarch mix in and allow to thicken.

9) Eat!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Ocean Park Hong Kong..etc..


First the rant. I can't describe the frustration I feel waiting for my computer to load on my proxy that for some reason after an update has seriously slowed down to literally having me leave the room and come back to find nothing has loaded.
Sigh. So if anyone has any bright ideas or would like to do a small search on how to go on youtube in *Cheeeena* (since it looks as if I probably shouldn't type certain things in case *they are watching) Let me know if you find out any decent results.

With this week being the 20th anniversary of a certain massacre, the internet security has been heightened thus making it impossible for me to communicate with people back home through creative measures. Thankfully face****** book is still working.

What have I been up to lately you wonder?

I have a small herb garden growing, I'll take a photo later to show how my basil, parsley and green onions are coming along. Had I found more potting soil I would also have lettuce, spinach and tomatoes on the go.

We went to Hong Kong again last weekend for our visas and took a side trip to Macau for the night. Photos have already been posted on face*********book with descriptions.

After much coaxing I finally convinced Nicola to take me to Ocean Park so I could see the panda bears. The conversation started a little like this;

-Me "Hey, do you want to go to Ocean Park tomorrow to see the Panda Bears?"
-Him - "No, not really"
-Me - "Oh ok, do you have any other ideas on what we shall do tomorrow?"
-Him - "No"

He's that guy who says no first and then after a little convincing ..and having a great time he says, wow that was fantastic and it takes everything inside of me to hold back the "I told you so".
It happens often.

Anyhoo, I got some great photographs of the pandas, a jellyfish exhibit, seals, and all sorts of other things. Having gone on a saturday meant long lines for the rides so no ferris wheel views but the day turned out great.

I've been taking Mandarin lessons for 3 weeks now going twice each week. My teacher said it's an easy language to learn and I chuckled upon hearing this. But, being done week 3 now, I can somewhat agree. There are less words than English including tenses and since they use the same word with a different tone I can agree that there is less. Like any language there is studying and memory work, I hope it all sinks in and stays put so I can have a chance to use it later in life.

I made my first Chinese style meal last week, sweet and sour chicken with rice. I made a video for my dear mother whom I miss cooking alongside. All I need to do is get it uploaded which lately has been a real headache. So anyone else who is interested in Tara's home cooking video tutorial can see that hopefully in the next few weeks if I can finally get it sorted out.

Anyone with GOOD movie reccommendations can pass those along my way. I'm always interested in a good flick since I watch quite a few in the afternoons.

Here's a few choice picks from the last couple of weeks:

Taken in Macau at Monte Fort.
Click to enlarge.

In Macau

Hong Kong, Ocean Park

Jellyfish, Ocean Park

Me! in Lan Kwai Fong for last call happy hour 8:45pm only $34/drink.

I wouldn't forget a shot of these cuties. They looked like giant toys. More pics of them to come.

Soo, hoping for good luck in the future with my internet access. Wish me luck! Don't forget to send me some movie recommends..