Saturday, February 7, 2009

Hong Kong...

Hong Kong has been great!
What a nice place to come to after the trials and tribulations of southern China. Not to say that it had been anything less than a wonderful addition to the large collection of adventures I've been having, but daily travel, a new language barrier, crazy food experiences and bone-chilling cold had wrapped themselves up into a many layered case of culture shock.
Hong Kong- warm weather and sun, delicious food on every corner (actually, it's still quite different here, but I've been accustomed now...) and meeting new friends.
I've been staying here with a friend of a friend, a fellow female-Asian (Shanghainese) capoeirista- she relocated to Hong Kong last year from New York, and will be getting her yoga teacher certification in Thailand next month before moving back to the states. It's been so nice to be here- she has demonstrated what I'm learning is a very Chinese or perhaps just Asian- wonderfully warm and generous hospitality.

I sleep on the futon in the living room which overlooks the ocean, we're on the 23rd floor.
Last night I spent some time with the Capoeira Brasil Hong Kong group, led by Professor Chumbinho of Australia. He lives at the studio with his girlfriend Bale, who incidently, also teaches ballet! I led the warm-up, then Chumbinho took over, then there was a roda. Good times! Everyone was very welcoming.

This morning Jessica made pancakes before we went to Lantau to see the world's largest outdoor seated Buddha. It's 85 feet high.
We met up with Peter, another Chinese-American-now-living-and-working-in-Hong-Kong, and Mona, his friend from New Jersey who is going on a backpacking tour of southeast Asia next week.

We took a swinging cable car up over the mountains to visit this little man-made village- I say man-made because it is not really home to any indigenous minority groups. It was built solely to sell tchokes and trinkets to the hordes of tourists that flood Hong Kong and are looking for some culture amidst all the high-end shopping. Not to mention the outlet stores that hit you right before you get there. There is a monastery there, which is still functioning.

We went on the Wisdom Walk, which winds it's way around a figure eight path under towering wood panels upon which is written the heart sutra. Then we ate fish ball siu mai and sweet tofu soup before going back down in the cable car.
Then we all got massages...
And then we went for sushi...
Ah, this is the life man, now I am ready for bed!

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