Hong Kong – One Visit is Not Enough

Hong Kong is cool place.  I like traveling to foreign countries and exploring places that I’ve never been to. I get to see and experience all kinds of things that are interesting and memorable. It’s even more interesting when you don’t speak the local language…or in my case, not very well. I stayed in the Tsim Sha Tsui district of Kowloon, Hong Kong. This area was densely packed with all types of shops, restaurants, jewelry stores, night clubs, electronics stores, and bars. When the sun went down, the place lit up and the area was vibrant and alive.

[You can double click on these pictures to make them larger.]

Different shapes, sizes, and denominations.Going to a foreign country means that you’ll handle foreign currency that you’re not familiar with.  These are coins from Hong Kong. From upper top LH corner, 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 dollar, 2 dollars, and 5 dollars. I walk into a store to buy a bottle of water. The clerk tells me how much the item costs. I have no idea what she said. She points to the cash register display. I pull out a wad of coins that I don’t recognize and I feel stupid as I turn coins over and see which coins I need to give the clerk. Rather than waste her and my time, I purposely give the clerk more than is needed, thinking that she would give me change back. Again she says something that I don’t understand, but this time I can tell by the tone of her voice, that it was not a compliment. She then she reaches into my hand and pulls out the coins that are needed. That was easy.  I remembered how that same thing happened when I went to England for the first time.  This put a smile on my face.

The Hong Kong airport is very new and modern. Overall, this airport is really nice and it Super clean and modern.makes most airports in the USA look sad. I went to the United Club before my return flight and noted that it is a cut above the United Clubs that I’ve visited in the US. The food selection was fantastic and beverage selection was too.  I couldn’t believe how nice this United Club was in the Hong Kong airport.  But then again, this was the Hong Kong airport and something this nice just made perfect sense.

The scale of shopping and restaurants inside the airport remind me of the Galleria in Houston. If you ladies forget your shoes when you travel to Hong Kong, look no further than the Hong Kong airport to address your needs.  Jimmy Choo'sDrag your man (or yourself) over to Jimmy Choo’s and pick up a pair or three. And of course, you can’t buy new shoes and not get a new bag, so go next door and find a Gucci bag to match. If Gucci isn’t your style, you can goto Versace or Prada and get not only a bag, but some fabulous sunglasses that you can wear in the airport to give you that movie star look.  And while you’re breaking the bank, why not stop at Tiffany’s and get 4 total carats of ice for your two beautiful ears.  You know that will look great with your new sunglasses, bag and shoes.  The Hong Kong airport has these places and more.  Your Visa, MasterCard, and American Express are readily accepted here.  When you’re spending that kind of money, who cares if your card charges a foreign transaction fee?

Of course, while the women are shopping, the guys can elevate their mack daddy status with new threads from Hugo Boss, Giorgio Armani, and many other More places to drop some cash.fine designer names.  Once you buy the nice threads, your smelly, beat up, dirty, faux leather trainers look out of place.  Never fear, Ferragamo is here.  How many of you men know that discerning women check out a man’s shoes?  C’mon ladies, speak up here.  What are your first impressions when you see a man wearing nice clothes and bad shoes?  Help turn a frog into a prince…..or maybe just a well dressed frog.  Chime in ladies and give the men here some needed advice.

Walking the streets of Tsim Sha Tsui was fun.  There were never ending lights and signs, narrow streets and heavy traffic, the smell of wonderful food, people dressed up for a night on the town, the thumping bass of dance club music, and tourists staring in amusement at the simplest of things and taking pictures of everything.  Yea, I was one of those tourist types with camera in hand.  It was fun.

This beer is so light, you can fly!  But flying while drunk is dangerous.  Don't drink and fly.

This must be good beer.  It’s so light that it makes you fly.  I must drink some of that beer the next time I go, even though flying while intoxicated seems dangerous.

Talk to the Hand!

I felt safer knowing that super heroes were in town.  Talk to the hand he says.

Cool electronic stores were everywhere. Never pay the list price.

If you like electronics, you will like Hong Kong.  There are many small stores like this with all kinds of neat electronics and techie stuff.  I learned right away that you can bargain with these small electronic stores on their merchandise.  On some items, it is not unusual for the salesperson to cut the price by as much as 50% or more.  Wait till they drop the price at least two times, then say that you’ll pay cash (HKD) for it.  This will usually call for another drop in price.  Then tell them that you want to look around and start walking out.  The price usually drops again.

My kind of place.  Party.  Dance. Clubbing. BBQ. Karaoke. Darts.  Except for Karaoke, this sounds like a good time.  Perhaps after a few drinks, Karaoke could be fun too.  I admire the courage of a tone-deaf person who has the guts to get on stage and sing.

Speaking of singing, this woman looks familiar.  Does anybody remember MDNA?

Our once charismatic leader who once had a penchant for a nice Cohiba cigar.

Speaking of BBQ, if Bill says it’s good, then it must be at least pretty good.

Looks pretty tricked out to me.

This cool looking bicycle folds in half.  They must be really cramped for space.  If you look closely, you’ll see the reflection of a tourist taking a picture.

Awwww!  Now it's broken!

This is what it looks like when you fold it in half.  There’s that crazy tourist snapping pictures again.  Everywhere I go, he’s always there.

Ladies shoe and clothing stores were everywhere.

Another shot for the ladies.  There were cool little shoe and clothing stores everywhere.

All of the taxis were red and all were the same make and model of car.

Taxis were everywhere.   I should mention that in Hong Kong, people drive on the LH side of the road and the steering wheel is on the RH of the car.  Shades of England.

Noodle soup with shrimp dumplings.  This cost me only a few bucks.

This is what I had for breakfast Sunday morning.  A bowl of noodle soup with some shrimp dumplings.  Mmmm good and cheap too!

It was early Sunday morning when I took this picture and the place was closed.  This place was full of people on Friday night.  And there’s that light beer again.  I wonder if she can fly too?

This Mc D's was very nice inside.  Not your typical McD's that you see in the US.

Is it possible to goto a major city anywhere in the world and not find at least one McDonald’s?  This one is for you Scott.

Lit up oche lines with two players from Japan warming up.

And this was the Hot Shot bar early Sunday before the tournament players arrived.  The camera flash lit up the room in this picture.   Actually it is kind of dark in the room and the blue throw lines on the floor look really cool in the dark room.

3000 HKD.  If you've got game, this is waiting for you.

This is what hitting a World 14 will get you.  When I got back, a person congratulated me for throwing a perfect game.  Then another person chimes in and says that it wasn’t really a ‘perfect’ game.  I agreed and I said it was ‘virtual’ perfect game.  I felt like telling him to go there and play on stage and we’ll see how well he does.  Any player will tell you that hitting a World 14 is very special.  They’ll also tell you that hitting it on stage in front of a packed house and while you’re being streamed live on the internet on USTREAM is even more special.  I did both and I will never forget it.  The memory of that special moment will be with me forever.

I return back to Hong Kong in May 2012 for The World Stage 3.  I look forward to exploring new areas of the city.  Look for a new set of pictures and more stories when I return.


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