Sunday, February 22, 2009


At the beginning of February, I switched my work week to four days, Monday-Thursday. This was my idea since business is slow, and I wanted extra time to pursue my hobbies and other interests. One of those interests is volunteering--another New Year's resolution. Last week, I started volunteering at Crossroads, a Hong Kong charity supporting local residents, as well as, needy people around the globe. I am working in the kitchen to prepare lunch for the volunteers and refugees seeking shelter at Crossroads. I worked with two refugees from Somalia who are waiting for asylum in Canada. Working at Crossroads exposes me to new and different people that I would not have otherwise met. So far, I really enjoy it.
Crossroads is located in a remote area of Hong Kong very near China called the Gold Coast. The Gold Coast has some development and a yacht club along a beautiful beach. After my volunteering, I took a long walk on the beach and collected some beautiful shells.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

New Friends

In ode to my New Year’s resolutions, I am expanding my horizons. I joined a meet up group on Wednesdays—very cool people. I’m not sure if it because Hong Kong is an international city, or because I have reached out more than I would have in the US, but I love coming together with a diverse group of new friends. Everyone had different backgrounds, races, ages, and stories. It is very refreshing to meet new people who don’t have an agenda and are genuinely nice. New experiences, keep on coming.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Art Experiment

Last night, I went to a fun and funky “art experiment” at a place called Experimenta. I replied to a small ad in Hong Kong’s version of a city paper. The ad was quite vague simply asking for volunteers to participate in an art experiment. The “experience” started at a Victorian-styled tea shop where I was served blueberry yogurt flavored tea and was given a brief history of the project by one of the owners of Experimenta. I was also given a business card that was primarily blank, on which, I was encouraged to write down any nouns that popped into my head during the evening. Next, I was taken to the small gallery and sat in a tiny loft. I was shown 2 art films by a well regarded artist and professor in Hong Kong. The strange part was the TV was mounted to the ceiling with the screen facing the floor so I had to look up to watch it. The whole “experience” was carefully choreographed by an aspiring curator.

It is hard to describe the first film which lasted about 25 minutes. It had very little dialog. The film showed several women filmed in different years and how each woman knew one of the other women. There were scenes of major life events such as weddings, as well as, simple, daily life activities. I really liked how the different scenes were interspersed with very quick snapshots of other scenes which reminded me of how I think and how memories pop into my head. The second film was short and more straight forward showing chairs.

After the films, I was served wine and had a lovely chat with the co-owner about my thoughts on the films, my life, and my beliefs about various topics, mostly women’s issues. The interviews of the participants are being collected for another art project. I was very impressed by the co-owner’s transition from a career in banking to a gallery owner.

It was a fascinating and different way to spend and evening. Here is the website which explains the “experience” better. Scroll down to “Part 2”.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Style Baby

You've gotta start young if you want to be a true fashionista. This little girl could barely walk and only had 2 teeth, so she wasn't much older than 1. Check out her patent leather knee boots, panda purse, Hello Kitty tunic, headband, and heart leggings. You go Style Baby.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

No Squat Toilets

In mainland China and elsewhere, the squat toilet is the norm. For those not familiar with the squat toilet, it is a flushing ceramic toilet bowl, but it is recessed into the floor. There is no seat, and like the name implies, you squat to use it. Those who are used to using a squat toilet get confused on how to manage a western or "normal" toilet, and sometimes stand on the toilet seat. I have seen footprints on toilet seats in Hong Kong, but I never saw a sign like this one until now. It was on back of the stall door.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Year of the Ox

Kung Hei Fat Choi! Chinese New Year was last week, but I am a bit delayed in posting due to Mom and sister's visit to Hong Kong. The visit was great but too short. Time flew by with all the typical Hong Kong sightseeing, eating, and shopping.

At the Big Buddha:
Horseraces on the luckiest day of the year:
Beautiful picture of the harbour just before the fireworks began:
2009 is the year of the Ox.

The OX year is a conservative year, one of traditions and values. This is not a year to be outrageous. A slow but steady year.

This OX year will bring stability and growth where patience and diligence pays off.

This is a year of Harvest - when we reap what we have sown. Take care of business this year, do not let things slide.

I have drafted my resolutions for 2009, and I plan to heed the advice above. My two main goals are to take time for personal reflection and to do service for others. In order to meet these goals, my blogging may become less frequent. Best wishes for a wonderful 2009.