Beach Luaus and Hong Kong History

Hong Kong’s not all about flash and shiny newness. There’s a lot of history that’s happened there and they take care to remember it. I learned a little more about its origins and I went to a beach party too. Yeah – a little fun, a little culture. All in a day’s work in Hong Kong.

May 5, 2010

But the fun for Saturday was not over yet! Oh no, because the International Students’ Association (which I didn’t know existed until about 10 prior) had organized a beach party that night on Clearwater Bay Beach 1. I had intended to go to LKF that night (after Thursday’s plans were cancelled due to an unscheduled monsoon, I was really itching to go) but alas, the group had other ideas. So we took a cab to what we thought was the right beach, were dropped off at Clearwater Bay Beach 2, and had to walk fifteen minutes back up the road to find Beach 1 (actually this same thing happened to every group who took a cab to the beach; I really don’t know what the problem was, but the cab drivers just didn’t seem to get that there were two beaches, even when it was explained to them in detailed Chinese). The party was in full swing when we arrived, which wasn’t saying much. There was a lot of techno music (ugh), cheap alcohol, and extremely drunken people. I hung around for a couple of hours, but when I heard someone mention a bus was coming to take people back, I bolted for it. The whole thing was just not my idea of a good time, and I was happy to go back.  I really wished at that point I had gone to LKF instead, but oh well, can’t win ‘em all.  So the day of Saturday was great, the evening – eh, not so much.

Clearwater Beach 2. This is where the night party took place.

Clearwater Beach 2. This is where the night party took place.

Sunday was another good day. That day, I went with yet another group of students (notice how people just grouped in all different kinds of formations – that open attitude was so refreshing in Hong Kong) to the Hong Kong Museum of History in the afternoon. We spent a good portion of the afternoon strolling through exhibits dating Hong Kong back to 400,000,000 years ago.  Yes, that is a lot of zeros!

A model of a junk boat that people could spend their entire lives on.

The group I was with left me at about 5 PM to go see the Iron Man 2 movie, which had just come out on Friday, but since I wasn’t interested in seeing it, I instead finished up the museum at a leisurely pace, and then went out to investigate the district of TST. A couple of my friends were across the street checking out the Hong Kong Science Museum, so we agreed to meet after it closed and have dinner in TST before heading back to campus. While I was waiting, I wandered down Nathan Road, looked at the largest designer stores ever all lined up one after the other: Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Cartier, Dior, Fendi, etc. The list just went on and on! Finally, I ran into Angela and Xiaoyi just as they were preparing to call me for dinner, and we ate at a restaurant nearby before going home. It was a very good way to spend a Sunday.

Monday turned out to be fun as well. I was not productive after my one class in the morning, but in the evening, I met up with one of the girls I went to the museum with on Sunday, Erin, and we went to Temple Street again. I saw a Chinese-style dress there last time that I had been yearning for ever since. Plus, it was only $99 HKD (about $12.50 USD). So we met that night and headed to Temple Street. When we arrived we had some street food (what else?), wandered the stalls looking at everything for sale (it ranged from lighters, to teapots, to fake bags, to paintings, to knock off clothes and shoes – you name it, someone sold it).

Some of the better souvenirs we found for sale that evening.

Some of the better souvenirs we found for sale that evening.

Erin ended up buying a Mother’s day card and gift for her Mom (as well as some souvenirs for herself: “They’re SO cheap!”) and I secured the dress I had my eye on. I hadn’t tried it on yet (the lady wouldn’t let me even though I was wearing a tank top and jeans specifically for slipping the dress over!), but she measured me before recommending a size, so hopefully it would fit correctly later when I tried it on (fingers crossed!). Anyway, we accomplished what we set out to do, wandered happily around the area chatting all evening, and at last came back to campus around 11:30 PM. I had a really good time, and discovered that Erin is a really cool girl, who I ended up hanging out with many more times in the future.

My busy weekend in a nutshell. I was very productive in my opinion in terms of getting things checked off of my “Hong Kong Must Do” list. And next week… I was going to Taiwan!!!  Get ready for more epic tales from abroad, my friends. I’d set my sights on Tung Ping Chau – the island famous for its bun towers. You heard right.

Quite possibly the cutest umbrella ever. Erin looks very cute in this pic too.

Quite possibly the cutest umbrella ever. Erin looks very cute in this pic too.

I don't smoke, but if I did, this is the bad ass pipe I'd use.

I don’t smoke, but if I did, this is the bad ass pipe I’d use.

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