Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Shenzhen: Day Trip to Hong Kong

November 7, 2014
The weekend was originally supposed to be spent going to Beijing, but we found out that APEC was taking place this weekend, so we ended up deciding last minute to go to Shenzhen because Cory has family there. Last minute as in...booking Wednesday morning for a Friday night flight ^^
The flight wasn't until 10:00PM, so we met up near 南京西路 (West Nanjing Rd) for food at 权味石锅拌饭 (Korean restaurant) and got this curry dish with Korean flavors to it. We flew out from Pudong and because Spring Airlines is kinda shit, it was delayed ><;;; Always with their delays bah. Cory's aunt and uncle was picking us up and everything too. So we didn't reach where we were staying until 4:00AM T_T

November 8, 2014
We had dimsum in the morning. I think it's more Hakka styled foods, so I didn't eat like half of it >< because they weren't foods that I would like. 

We went to Hong Kong! Second time in Hong Kong this year already, heh. We took a bus there and it's kinda funny because at the bus stop, we have to go through immigration to leave China, then get on the bus and it drives for 20 seconds, just to drop us off at immigration for entering Hong Kong. So the bus is literally located right at the border haha. I forgot how much it costs, but I think it was HK$45 for a roundtrip and it's only about 1.5 hours ride. 
 Yummy street food
Curry Pork chop + eggs over rice & a legit milk tea (didn't like it though)

Also visited this store on 花园街 (Fa Yuen Gai) that we liked last time and bought more clothes from there. :D It's only like HK$50-60 per piece too.  

A frustrating thing about this experience my aunt from the States wanted me to ask my aunt from Hong Kong to buy her jeans. I told my cousin (HK aunt's son) this and that I would go to my aunt's work to pick it up. I'm coming to Hong Kong with friends so I won't be staying in Hong Kong but going back to Shenzhen. (Originally he asked, with so many people, how can we all fit at his place?) Yadda yadda, I reiterated that I would be going to my aunt's workplace to get it. 

When I got to her workplace, she told me that the jeans were at her place because my cousin said I would be staying over WTF. I was mad because now I couldn't get the jeans because we were only here for half a day and they live an hour away (2 hours roundtrip) and it was already late afternoon. Plus I went all the way to the workplace to pick it up too. I was so upset arggg. And scolded my cousin ofc. But after a while, I felt bad that I showed such an attitude to my aunt because I'm just like, no I don't have time to go get it. I can't get it, etc etc. And I was just visibly upset. 
We went to Tsim Sha Tsui again but mainly for photos and whatnot, we didn't stay for the light show. I'm glad I had my camera this time because I didn't last time and took shit-quality photos with my phone. 

We rushed back to the bus station to catch the last bus.. Omg felt so bad because we were taking our time with taking photos that we didn't know that we were running out of time. (Cory's aunt/uncle didn't rush us to leave). When we got there the bus was full already...but there was still one more bus coming. Phewwww.
When we got back to Shenzhen, we found a local place for seafood (crab & shrimp) porridge! Cory kept raving about it, so I had high expectations but it didn't feel like THIS IS GOING TO BE THE BEST CONGEE I'VE EVER EATEN. Okay now that I think about it, it was actually pretty good though, I'll give it that.

Next post more on Shenzhen itself, though I didn't really see that much of it tbh.

Until next time!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Hong Kong: Afternoon Tea @ Peninsula Hotel The Lobby

October 7, 2014
I wanted to try afternoon tea for a while now and my friend also recommended it, so why not pretend to be fancy for the afternoon? Hehehe.

The Peninsula Hotel was right off the exit at Tsim Sha Tsui, but getting to Exit L3 was a troop as usual. 
The theme was “Peninsula in Pink” to support breast cancer awareness (October). HK$338 or HK$598 for two (+10% surcharge for service). 

We were worried we wouldn’t have enough time just because there was so many people in front of us in line since we didn’t get there ahead of time, and it’s an activity where people just sit there to relax, so when will it ever be our turn?! But in the end it was only about an hour or so wait. Maybe an hour and a half, I forgot, but it wasn’t as bad as I had anticipated and passed by pretty quickly.
According to the menu, it came with:
  • A selection of finger sandwiches and savoury pastries 
  • Home-made afternoon tea pastries
  • Freshly-baked raisin scones (which ended up cold cuz we took too long with taking pictures fol)
  • Devonshire clotted cream
  • Strawberry preserve
Our choices of tea: Early Grey & Chamomile Orange Blossom 
We actually just had lunch like…two hours before we got served so we were still full so halfway through I felt like I had to force myself to eat because…I wanted to try everything. Maybe I’m just a fatass fml. The food was pretty good though! 
The tea, well, I’m not really picky when it comes to tea and I can’t differentiate between good tea and bad tea, so I have to admit that it tastes like my $2 box of teabags from the store. Wompwomp. 

Hehe it’s nice to indulge myself once in a while. This definitely didn’t have to be a Hong Kong activity since you can do afternoon tea just about anywhere for like the same price, so I dunno if it was a good use of the time I had left in Hong Kong but it was a relaxing way to end it. Definitely want to do this again :)

With this, I'm done with my Hong Kong posts! We rushed back home to pick up our luggage and went straight to the airport. Shitty Spring Airlines delayed the flight (by like 2-3 hours?) and didn't tell us, so we didn't get home until really, really late. 

Until next time!

Hong Kong: Alone at Disneyland

October 6, 2014
I don’t think it’s really a big deal for people to travel or go to these types of places alone, but it’s typically out of my comfort zone. I had the day to myself because Cory went to go see the Big Buddha and she was going to Disneyland later, but I didn’t know when and neither of us had working phones/Internet. I debating at first on maybe just going to Mongkok again, but that seemed kind of boring. Couldn’t really think of anything else to do in Hong Kong. It’s one of the top places that I’ve wanted to visit, but when I got there, I had no idea what I wanted to do there either.

So anyways, to go alone or not? Fuck it, just go. Ok ok, so I went. This is kind of the first time I've really stepped out of my comfort zone to go somewhere alone. Not that I need someone to go with me every single place, but for these types of occasions, I've never really thought about going by myself. 

Wells, that's it for the reflections. Prepare yourself for my super detailed itinerary because I guess I had nothing else better to do while I was there or something. If you wanna know what I did exactly at Disneyland, I guess just keep reading, or at least scroll for lots of photos.

It’s actually pretty weird now that I’m looking over it again because it’s questionably detailed with the times, but I’ll put it up anyways just for…records sake. It was originally done just to keep track of how long it took to wait for each ride, what I thought of it, and how long it lasted. It wasn’t particularly crowded that day because I didn’t really have to wait that long for any of the rides.
Kind of funny and weird, but there was some girl that I saw the day before on the train and I noticed her because her outfit reminded me of Minnie Mouse. At the station, I saw the same girl in the same outfit that day O_O While going through my photos I just realized it's that girl in the red...I don't think I took this photo intentionally to get her.
1:00PM-2:00PM One hour MTR ride to the Disneyland Stop. It was a lot faster than I thought because I was expecting it to be two hours away. It was also only $3, so something around HK$21-25. 

Disneyland is right outside the station, maybe like a three minute to the actual entrance. Tickets were HK $450 (~US$58). I cry.

2:20PM Animation Academy
 I learned how to draw Winnie the Pooh. I was hoping to be able to do more than just a sketch, but it was still nice. Lasted 7 minutes.

I think this couple got engaged here lol.

3:00PM Flights of Fantasy

Waited until 3:15 or so for it to actually reach where I was. It’s basically like a parade and it was cool with all the characters. I like how the performers smiled all the time versus some places they look like they just hate their job so much. Kind of weird because I found out when I got home that Cory was basically like… 20 feet away from me watching the parade too near where I was. Feels like a Korean drama where you miss each other even while being at the same place, fol.


3:30PM Tarzan's Treehouse
In the water was this elephant thing, and I overhead someone saying that it’s obviously fake, but fml because I thought it was real.
Rode a raft for literally 5 seconds to go to the “island” after waiting 5-10 minutes. It was just a giant tree house where you walk up and then down. 

4:20PM Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Car
Oh hi there
Less than 10 minutes of wait. Waited for the next one to sit in front. Fun but it was a small ride. The little girl sitting next to me was screaming loool.

Oh yeah, while waiting for this ride, my leg was really itchy from bug bites, so I whipped out my 白花油 and rubbed it on, and people were giving me a disgusted face because of the smell fml.

4:40PM Mystic Manor 
It was a simulated tour/semi roller coaster. It was very fun, but similar to what I've done before in the California Disneyland. I recommend this though.

5:00PM Fort Emery
 The ride goes up and down slowly in parachute seats. The ride itself was very slow but still gave me the jitters that felt like I wanted to pee.

5:15PM RC Racer
Almost thought it was a self walk racetrack, while walking to the track. The wait was 15 minutes and it was fun while it lasted.  
Creepy baby


6:00PM Philhar Magic
At this time, I was worried that it'll get late and dark, so my photos for the rest of the park won't turn out as nicely. It is a simulated short film with wind, scent and water. 

By the time I finished it, it did get dark outside :( But the castle looked pretty lit up! See the difference between phone and camera quality?! Wah.

6:30 The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Not sure if this ride is popular or it's or maybe the park just got more crowded. Waited 20 minutes for a three minute ride. It was too rated G for me.

7:00 Another parade similar to the Flights of Fantasy
It lasted for 15 minutes and it was really pretty because of the lights. After it was over, the entire street was dark and hard to walk through ><

7:30PM It's a Small World
 Practically no wait. It's a 5 minute boat ride. For OCD reasons...I ended up riding this twice.

8:00 Space Mountain
It was a very fast, dark stroller coaster ride. It reminded me of a planetarium because you could only see the "stars" surrounding you. Another ride that I recommend because it was fun. 

8:11 Autopia
8 minutes wait. Lasted for 5 mins. It's one of those rides where you get to drive around the race track. I also remember something like this in California, but I don't remember if we actually did it or not (something tells me that we didn't). It was very bumpy, but I think it's only because I'm a bad driver.

Got off of Autopia and rused to the fireworks because it was starting at 8:30PM!
It was very pretty (despite my shitty photos) but also really crowded. I got a decent view of the whole thing, except this tall pole thing blocked my view for pictures :(

Did some last minute shopping for souvenirs that I didn't get a chance to buy before because I didn't want to carry it everywhere. I headed towards home after this. So that concludes Disneyland!!

But my night hasn't ended yet..!
I actually got off at Mongkok to look for Dollywink lashes cuz I found it to be cheap in Bonjour (HK$59) but didn't really find much. It was also around this time that I finally saw protestors! They were just sitting there and that's it. So there was a reason for the streets to be blocked off, but I guess it's just empty during the day.
I didn't eat all day aside from the instant noodles that my cousin made me in the morning. So I stopped by a local restaurant and ordered a plate of beef rice for HK$30, and it was pretty disappointing... 

Phew, the dreaded post is finally over because of all the photos D: Until next time!