Archive | Traveling RSS feed for this section

Life in the Fragrant Harbor

14 Jul

 

Okay, this video is sort of how it’s like to be in Hong Kong, except the heat is way more sweltering, there’s *way* more people on the street, and you’re always smelling something weird. And, you know, I live in Kowloon and not the Island, which features in most of the video.  (A reference for those who might be better acquainted with NYC: Manhattan is to Hong Kong Island, as Queens/Brooklyn is to Kowloon.) But they do show a fair bit of Mong Kok, even what looks like the basketball court that I can hear from my balcony.

I realize this is an ad campaign for an airline, but honestly, they’re better photographers than I am. I think they do a pretty fine job of capturing some of what it’s like to live here.

Advertisements

The Country That Isn’t

7 Jul

We just celebrated “Hong Kong SAR Establishment Day” here in HK. (Really rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?) It’s a holiday to celebrate the handover of HK as a British colony back to China… with a few caveats. This is less like Australia Day or Independence Day, and more like a cause for protests. I like to think of it as “We’ll take the day off, but don’t expect us to be happy about why”.  And so, the day was basically used as a pro-democracy rally — Beijing’s favorite type of rally. Over 500 protestors were arrested and it’s caused a bit of a to-do. I’ve found that CPG Grey actually has a pretty good explanation of Hong Kong and China.

Hong Kong

16 Jun

Well, I’ve been sitting on some rather important news for a little while, mostly because my life has been amazingly busy the past few months. In addition to finally landing a translation job, I also moved to Hong Kong at the beginning of June. So, yeah. That happened.

hong kong cat says maoZoe says hi.

I’m living in a quiet section of Kowloon with an old friend — Mlle. A and her cat Zoe.  I’m really liking it so far. It’s warm and lovely, even if the pollution has been a little bad the past few days. I haven’t been exploring the neighborhood a whole lot in the past two weeks, mostly because I’m usually exhausted from my day job during the week and then from the boatloads of translating that I have to do on the weekends.  I did manage to find a place that does amazing takeaway roast duck three streets over, so at least I’m eating well.  (That is a lie; I am mostly eating PB&J sandwiches and Lucky Charms because I am lazy.)
I will do more exploring as time permits, no worries there.  If there’s anything in particular you think I should go visit, let me know in the comments. Otherwise, on y va!

Rubber Duckie

10 Jun

rubber duck in hong kongPhoto via CNN.

Okay, today in the world is awesome, Hong Kong just said good bye to a massive inflatable rubber duck. This four-story duckie was hanging out in Victoria Harbor for the past two weeks, bobbing around and being adorable. It’s already visited Osaka, Sydney, Sao Paolo and Amsterdam, and will be headed to the US sometime soon. So if you live in an American port city, keep a weather eye out for a giant yellow duck!

 

The Vasa

20 May

This marks the end of my Sweden posts, but I definitely saved the best for last. The Vasamuseet was practically the only thing I knew about Stockholm and wanted to see before getting there. It’s a museum for a complete warship from the 17th century. What’s not to love?

P1070371The Vasa

Continue reading

Södermalm

17 May

Södermalm is the cool, hip section of Stockholm. You know the “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” series? (Of course you do, it’s one of the most read series in the world.) Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomqvist spend most of their time hanging around Södermalm, just like their author Stieg Larrson. Anyways, it’s a totally awesome place to go wander around.

Stairs in SöderStairs in Söder.

Continue reading

The Nobel Museum

13 May

Nobel MuseumThe Nobel Museum

So, as it turns out, I found the Nobel Museum to be incredibly fascinating. I’m a sucker for a decent science story. The Nobel Museum is one of the more famous places in Stockholm – the Swedish Academy of Sciences is located on the second floor of the building and they host the Nobel Prize Winners every year.

Alfred Nobel’s probably one of the most famous Swedes ever. He invented dynamite and was a consummate businessman, making him fabulously wealthy. Nobel never married or had children, so he dedicated his fortune to fund the awards that we know as the Nobel Prize. His one page will stipulated that a prize be given in physics, chemistry, and medicine/anatomy each for eminence, a prize in literature for work “in an idealist direction”, and a prize in peace for the person who gives the greatest service to international fraternity, reducing standing armies, or initiating peace congresses. Interestingly, in a time of severe nationalism, Nobel said that the prizes would be given regardless of nationality.

Continue reading