Saturday, August 25, 2012

Hong Kong: Last Look

Hong Kong has great places to visit (their museums are excellent, as are the parks), but for the most part the real draw is just wandering the streets taking it all in. Here's some photos I took: 

Street in Kowloon: huge tropical trees and double-decker bus (British influence at work)

Chinese medicine store, decorated Chinese-style: brilliant neon lighting, very boxy aesthetic and jammed as full as possible

Hong Kong is older than Singapore and thus full of crumbling 1970s buildings

More Chinese medicine: dried lizards on a stick, fungus, wolfberries (I think that's the English name? they put them in rice porridge, especially in the winter: it's supposed to be healthy for children)

Space is at a premium in Hong Kong so everything is cramped. This is actually two stores: the one on the right is about the size of my closet.

Typical temple: the people of Hong Kong are generally quite religious (especially when compared to mainland China). The red cones are incense, for sale to improve your luck. The desk is the cashier's: Chinese temples are very much money-making operations and all sorts of things are available for the right price.

Horse racing is a huge deal in Hong Kong (because of the associated betting: Chinese people love gambling even if they are generally not very sporty). Here's a line of punters outside one of the many branches of the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

Bamboo is used in the construction of all buildings, even skyscrapers, as scaffolding: this construction worker is constructing it as I watch. Once the job is done, they take it all down and reuse the bamboo on the next project.

Hong Kong is a city of neon. At night this is quite beautiful.

One of the innumerable 'wet markets' (selling fresh food: fruit, vegetables, fish, meat). I like the vegetable displays: there's such variety.

The fish and meat sections are not for the squeamish or those really into hygiene (though Hong Kong is a lot cleaner than mainland China!)

B and I went to a super trendy restaurant of the moment (the wait was over 3 hours and they don't take reservations). All they sell is ramen--the menu has only four options total--and once they run out of ramen, they close, which they did just as we were leaving, disappointing the 50+ people still waiting. It's tiny (this photo shows half of the restaurant: it seats about 10 people) and very Japanese. It was quite a unique experience. The ramen was great BTW. 

And with that, we bid farewell to Hong Kong, flying back to Singapore the next afternoon. The following day, my parents returned to the US. But we weren't too sad, as in less than four weeks, B, R and I would be going there too. 

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