Wednesday, June 22, 2011

What's a haver?

Well, here I am in the clubhouse, all ready to load photos...and it won't let me! I am getting a load of warnings all in Chinese but I'm guessing its saying cannot open the USB stick. So you'll all have to wait until next week when our internet is finally connected, sorry!
Anyway a couple of people who are not Scottish have asked me what the blog title means. So apologies to the Scots; here goes. To haver is to talk nonsense. You can talk a lot of havers, you could be havering to someone, often in an argument one will tell the other to stop havering, etc etc. Oh, and its pronounced hayverz. Okay?
We are in the midst of a bout of stormy weather, typhoon signal number 3 has been hoisted. I don't know where or what is actuallly hoisted, as presumably it would soon blow down, but that's what the official term is. Last week we had signal 1. It seems to progress 1 then 3 then 8 then disaster! It actually isn't that bad, it is certainly a bit blowy and there is showery hot rain but nothing compared to a summer day in Bonnie Scotland, let alone winter!
I'll be back ASAP with the promised apartment photos. The chandeliers are worthy of their own blog, I promise you!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Settling in

So we have settled in to the new apartment. I'll post some pictures soon. The views across Victoria Harbour are absolutely stunning, it really is a view worth millions! We have tried to have a few leisure activities amongst the furniture selection and the mundane shopping for groceries and cleaning products. Mind you, even that can be exciting and we often come home with the unexpected! For example, there is a huge smelly fruit here about the size of a rugby ball with lethal spikes on it. It absolutely stinks! However the flesh is very popular, so we decided to buy a little pack already cut up. It lasted in the fridge an hour before I threw it out! I was retching every time I opened the door. I took a tiny bite and it tasted as bad as it smelled. Straight to the bin, I'm afraid. But it's the only thing among the many odd foodstuffs Ihaven't been able to eat. I just remember Martin's famous phrase to deal with anything unpalatable; "Two chews and swallow it over"
Our leisure activites this weekend included the Hong Kong International Dragon Boat Races on Saturday at Tsim Sha Tsui just down the road from our apartment. In fact we could see the finish point from the window! The boats were vibrantly colourful with golden dragon heads and tails and had 20 paddlers, a steersman who used a long rudder pole and a man or woman in the front beating a huge drum to set the pace. The teams wore colourful tops with dragon logos and the name of whoever they were representing, e.g Cathay Pacific, accountancy and IT companies, many banks, as well as community teams from all over Hong Kong, China, Thailand, Australia and Canada. On Sunday we took the Star Ferry over to the island then a scary top deck bus ride to the far side of the island to visit Stanley, a seaside and market town. The journey took us through a tunnel then high up above the sea with sheer drops beneath us. The road was so narrow it seemed impossible that two buses could pass. After wandering the market which was full of stalls offering fake watches, bags, paintings and linens, we had a dim sum lunch right on the seafront.
This week I have fewer commitments, so far only a dental appointment on Wednesday but as I am about to go and buy some lamps, I may have to spend an afternoon waiting in for delivery. So far, all the deliveries have gone without a hitch. They come when they say they will come, assemble whatever they brought and take away the packaging afterwards. Next Monday we finally get the TV, phone and internet package connected, hurrah! so I am looking forward to calling home, getting back onto Skype and picking up my Hong Kong friendships as I have been neglecting my new found friends due to lack of internet and no phone. Right, I'm away now to get a train then a bus to the big furniture shopping island Ap Lei Chau which takes about an hour. By the time I've picked out the lamps, made the return journey and had a rest, it will be time to think about dinner! How time flies when you're spending money! Ha!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Shenzhen weekend

I spent the long weekend in Shenzhen with Les, we had a great day at a cultural theme park called "Splendid China" which had live shows, beautiful landscaping and some quirky things to see and buy: Here are some pics.


Stone lions guarding the stairs

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Weekend ahead

It's funny to think of "The Weekend" when there hasn't actually been "The Week", as in a week of work and the anticipation of a couple of days off. Yet I do still think of "The Weekend" . I am going back up to China tomorrow and hopefully the weather will be better than last time when it rained heavily for most of my stay! This time I will stay until Tuesday as it is a holiday all over China for the Dragon Boat Festival, when long narrow canoe like boats are raced in commemmoration of an ancient official who drowned and the locals raced to save his body from the fishes.
Saw yet another apartment yesterday as the original one's owner has not responded to the agents letter. Frustrating, but it's hardly a slum here, in fact it is luxurious! I'll miss having someone pick up after me and clean everywhere, but I am looking forward to being in our "own" place. We'll still have a pool and jacuzzi of course!
As well as apartment viewing, I also registered at the Doctor yesterday ; she looked about 15 but positively mature compared to the pharmacist who looked about 12. I must be getting old!
Last night's poetry reading was fun, it was strange to be out and about at night, I haven't ventured far from the apartment complex on my own at night before. Got home about 11ish and it was still very hot, no need for a jacket. The streets were teeming with people and although most of the shops were closed, the bars and restauants were doing a roaring trade!
Today I need to go back to the docs at 6pm to collect the remainder of my prescription as they didn't have one of the meds in stock. I went shopping for towels this morning and lazed around the pool all afternoon, just indoors now for a cool shower before I head down to the pharmacy.