Sunday, 15 May 2011

Family First

I was determined not to let camera dementia get in my way this holiday. However, there were a few challenges today that confronted me when trying to take a photographic journal of my day. The first was the obvious. Whipping out that DSLR with a big multipurpose lens with children in the crowd wasn't easy! The second which I didn't count on was the condensation that formed on my lens from going in and out of air-conditioned places. Bugger. It didn't stop me from trying and from enjoying my day.

We started with the hotel buffet breakfast. If you've been following this blog then you'll know how I LOVE hotel buffet breakfasts. The venue for breakfast was much like the rest of the hotel, small and basic. As nice as it was having the offerings of the Asian breakfast items like rice porridge and squid balls, the quality of food was only just passable. The children were highly amused by the automatic pancake maker and the bread that tasted like Anzac biscuits. They were also highly excited with being allowed to have coco-pops as part of breakfast. I hope that they will have variations on the offerings. I do not think that I could eat the same things for seven days straight..

The buffet breakfast

At the arrival of my mother's best friend from primary school, we set out for suburban Kowloon to pay a visit to my maternal grandmother's youngest brother. (What is that in English? Grand uncle? great uncle?) They were so happy to see the children. I last saw them just over twenty years ago. We had yum cha together and they reminisced about my various aunts and uncles. The time flew and we said our goodbyes as they headed home. It is always nice for the children to meet relatives who they would otherwise never meet and to learn more about their heritage. I am still not quite brave enough to take everyone on the journey back to China so this a happy compromise.

Opa Jing Kun and Oma Ye Ming

Always handy to have someone who can read chinese when ordering food!

An asleep Jonah makes for a peaceful lunch

My mother's best friend

The trusty char siew bao and har gow

Chicken feet, one of my favourites

Fish head

Siew Mai

We made our way to Tung Chung where Citigate Outlets reside. That's right. Shopping time! The complex was amazingly modern. Much nicer than the ones at home! However, the prices were not as cheap as I had hoped for. I have to say that prices in the US are probably better especially around sale time. We had a fun time browsing but didn't end up buying anything.

The lovely view from McDonald's, where we had our half-time break

$20 HKD is about AUD $2.5

By this time, it was 430pm. We headed back toward Times Square via the MTR. We have been on the tram, the bus and now the MTR. The octopus card was all you needed with regard to ticketing. The services were frequent and clean. I just keep wondering why Sydney's public transport system is so dismal and why we can't have a simplified and efficient ticketing system.

We met up with Malcolm and wandered the streets looking for dinner. We settled for noodles on the street. Quick, cheap and tasty. This was followed by some yummy dessert before we hopped on a tram to head back to the hotel. The children are showered, in bed and Malcolm and I are chomping on some much loved beef jerky chinese style with the TV on. is bliss.

Having fun on the MTR

Noodles for dinner

Buying beef jerky

Then crossing the road to get some dessert

The lighting made it looks rather strange...but this is green tea ice-cream with mango, pomelo and sago. Delicious!

The children scoffing as per usual

The children's favourite mode of transport, the tram. AKA "Ting Ting"! I have tried to take a photo of one unsuccesfully multiple times. The one success would have to be of a black one at night!

So happy to have been provided with a bolster as requested on my pillow choice


  1. The sight of bak kwa is actually making me a little teary...

  2. I was really disappointed with Citygate Outlets too. But I've also been disappointed at US ones so I wondered if it was just me.
    Glad you're having a fun time and meeting relatives though :-)

  3. The shopping so far has been rather disappointing to be honest. But the food is making up for it! I swear I must have put on weight already because my shorts are feeling rather snug. I'm chomping on the last bit of bak kwa. Bliss...don't tell Malcolm. He's too busy at the conference gala dinner.