Sunday, February 25, 2007

Among Other Things...

I started my third part-time job last week. I've said on many occasions that I was born to work part-time, but this is getting a little out of control. Guess that Hong Kong tendency to overwork one's self has mosied it's way into my life. Needless to say, I've been a little swamped lately. I've still got one more Chinese New Year's post coming in the next few days (as soon as I get a moment to sit down and take a breath), but until then, this little update will have to do.

To explain my third job, I've been helping some friends launch CHOCOLUX, a French-style Cafe, complete with yummy, yummy crepes and mouth-watering chocolates. They've already got one location in a trendy district of Hong Kong, but it's more night club than restaurant. This second location is strictly cafe and is nestled amidst the crowds of the subway system. So, tomorrow is the grand opening, complete with a lion dance. (I'll explain that soon enough.) It's gonna be a doozy of a day, but worth the effort. (Cross your fingers!) Tonight I'm tumbling into bed way past midnight, stuffed with lots of tasty samples from today's kitchen training sessions. Unfortunately it also fell to me to sample the coffee drinks and the 6 or so coffee/chocolate drinks I sampled are fueling my desire to write this post. Falling asleep tonight could prove difficult.

And, Matt is still far, far away in the Island of Rhode, and I miss him. Alot. He keeps me sane during times like this.

Wish me luck!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Friday, February 16, 2007

Oink, Oink

As you might have surmised from Matt's guest post, he's not in Hong Kong right now. He left for Rhode Island this morning. I know, I know, it's very random. His company has an urgent project for him that required a last minute trip to the US. Last time we checked it was 11 F in RI. Needless to say, we had to go buy him a coat yesterday. Hope he can find himself a scarf and some gloves upon arrival.

Because Matt's not around, I'm left with little guard against my thriving potato chip addiction. He's usually really good about reminding me how terrible I feel after eating an entire bag of chips and helps me avoid my pitfalls, but with him out of the country, I'm left defenseless. Guess I'm doing my best to ring in the New Year of the Pig.

What I'm going to look like if Matt doesn't come home soon...

Year of the Pig

Myself and THE PIG

Today is the start of Chinese New Year. Well, technically, I think it starts tomorrow, but as of right now, I'm on vacation for the next few days. I thought I'd kick off the big, ol' holiday with some pictures that I took around town today. Enjoy!

Lantern Decorations at the Times Square Mall

The Chinese New Year "Santa Claus"?

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Guest Post: Attention East Coasters

Matt here - quick question for all y'all east coasters. If I were stuck in Providence for a day, what should I see & do? How about a week? Any tips on Boston, or surrounding areas?

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Day 6

Ten days ago I got fed up with our TV. Nine days ago I posted it for sale on craigslist. Three days later a guy from Oklahoma walked into our apartment, only to leave a few minutes later hauling away our TV. And this, folks, is Day 6 without a TV.

Matt and I decided when we got married that we would not have a TV the first year of marriage. Call it a romantic gesture. We really wanted to spend that first year in meaningful conversation without the distraction of television. [Insert the inevitable silly comment here about spending our first year in "meaningful conversation". I know it's bound to show up in the comments portion if I don't address it myself.] Let me clarify and say that we did have a television set, but we didn't subscribe to cable, nor did we get any of the free local channels because our apartment was situated on the wrong side of Mt Oread. We kept our TV/DVD player on a rolling cart in the closet and brought it out occasionally to watch a movie. It worked well for us and after our first anniversary we decided to go without for a while longer. Three years and some odd months later we found ourselves in HK and when someone offered to give us a free TV, we took it. We figured it would be a good way to keep up with news in the US, and maybe make us feel a little less homesick if we could watch some US shows now and again. Of course, being on a tight budget, we never sprung for the deluxe cable package and only took the basic channels that came with our internet.

The trouble is that I am a complete and absolute TV addict. I'm really bad at controlling what I watch, too. Especially when it comes to trashy reality TV. Those shows suck me in like a black hole. It's almost as bad as my addiction to potato chips. I think there is something to be said about being deprived as a child that makes you unable to control your urges as an adult. (As a child, both television and potato chips were contraband in our house. Now they are my two worst addictions.) So after six months of rerun MGM movies (not even the good ones, mind you--just the really bad, obscure ones that aren't even available at your local public library) and a few too many weird British jokes on BBC entertainment, I was ready to make a change. I had watched my last cheetah chase on National Geographic. The TV was a total brain drain. Mostly I would watch TV murder dramas on BBC Entertainment. I hate those shows! What was I doing?! I had to go cold-turkey.

So it's gone now. And I'm ok. Actually, Monday night I came home and sat down on the couch while Matt worked on the computer. Suddenly I realized that I had been staring at the wall where the TV used to sit. And I'd even been having intermittent conversations with Matt, like you do when you're watching TV. For an hour! It was strange. I guess old habits die hard. My mind knows the TV is gone, but I guess my body is still stuck in the habit. It's like when you when you play Mario Cart for three straight weeks over Christmas Break and then dream about playing and feel your hands jerking around in your sleep. Or something like that.

Feel inspired to trash your TV? Or do you just think I'm crazy...

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Spring Has Sprung Too Soon

Today I seriously considered turning on the airconditioner. Last week it was still a little chilly. This week it's not. It won't be chilly again for another 9 months. Blimey! For the last couple of months I've been kicking myself for not bringing more long sleeved shirts with me to Hong Kong. Guess I can let those bruises heal now. Today I'm bringing out the flip flops (those that haven't molded during their 2 month hibernation..more to follow on that in a future post) and packing up the winter blankets.

Those of you who know me know that I don't like hot weather. In fact I've diagnosed myself with a sun allergy. I love dark, rainy days. I would prefer to live in a cold, clammy cave in Copenhagen. (Ooh, I like the alliteration of that!) In the states there's always a hope for more winter every year come Groundhog's Day. Since it's much more likely that Hong Kong's proverbial groundhog was made into soup in lieu of seeing it's shadow, good-bye Winter and hello Summer. I think I have a long 9 months ahead of me.

PS These pictures are from early January when I came across a tree that resembled Fall leaves in Kansas. I got pretty excited. Notice the scarf and down vest? Gotta love 'em. (Ignore the short sleeves, please.)

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Some Days are Like That

Today an Indian Yogi told me I had a lucky face. Also, I met a Ukrainian gentleman who quite possibly wants to whisk me back to the Ukraine to meet his mother and bear his children. And I also fell on my face (my lucky face, mind you) while walking down the gangplank of a cruise ship. Some days are just like that, I guess.