Friday, February 8, 2013


Explorer at Kowloon

It took us two days to sail from Shanghai to Hong Kong, where we docked at the international terminal on the Kowloon side.  The ramp from the ship went to the second level of the shopping mall there, a kind of forced shopping experience because you had to walk through most of the mall to get out to the dock.  Everything around the port is very upscale, with stores like Cartier and designer clothes like Gucci for kids and adults.  The only saving grace is the free wifi in the mall.  I had been to Hong Kong previously, so just walked around Kowloon a bit, spending a little money on beer and snacks at 7-11.  

Tai Chi lesson
The second day I went with fellow Semester at Sea people on a day in Hong Kong.  We started by having a Tai Chi lesson at the Olympics arena.  The breathing exercises were great, but it gets a little tough doing some of the balancing stances.  We had 23 people of all ages in our group, from 5 to 75, so it was fun to watch everyone falling over.

Next we went to the MingCha Tea Company for a tea tasting.  We started with a jasmine tea with leaves tied to look like a lotus blossom when you put it in the hot water and the "flower" opens up.  Then we had various kinds of black tea, a lot of it paired with different artisan chocolates.  The three young boys in the group enjoyed the job of breaking the chocolate into small pieces for us.  I am sure a lot of it disappeared before they gave it to us.  I still feel that chocolate goes better with coffee than tea.

...becomes a flower
Tea ball...

On to the Causeway, a big shopping area, where we enjoyed a dim sum lunch.  There were a lot of people, but we were the only tourists there that I could see.  The dim sum varied from fried to boiled to a sticky kind.  Most of it I liked, but the sticky stuff reminded me of glue and I didn't eat much of it.

The Causeway shopping district

China SAS stats:  5 people drugged, 14 robbed, 10 cases of credit card fraud, 11 lost or stolen cell phones, 3 lost passports.  These kids don't seem to be learning how to be careful.

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