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Saturday, February 04, 2006

Well, let's just start off by saying thanks for all the excellent comments! Glad to be back in Perth!

Since I haven't posted for about two weeks, I thought it would be good to write a travel diary of some kind. Full of fun-filled activities. Because you know, everyone has fun when they're around me... :] So this post may be longer than usual, so feel free to just skip it and comment. :] heh. I shall include pictures as well, so apologies if the page takes awhile to download.


Day One -- 20/1/06

The plane ride was great, I love planes. QANTAS actually has TV screens in front of every seat now, and you can also fast-forward/pause etc to show you're watching. So that was great! Airport stuff went smoothly. Had some guy approach us at the airport asking if we needed a lift anywhere. I thought it was real suspicious but Dad reckoned that if anything fishy happened, Gor and Dad could've taken the dude on. Turns out that the dude was actually a drycleaner and he did some tax-free transportation on the side.

Arrived at the Metropole Hotel, or as we called it, the SARS hotel. Something to do with a guy being discovered to have SARS here. Very reassuring. Anyway, it's a really nice hotel, very clean too. The staff were really nice too.

We walked around for awhile, trying to decide where to eat dinner. On the street we saw people filming some sort of movie/TV show. It was a girl walking along the street, crying. Didn't recognise the actress though. For dinner we ended up choosing a small restaurant/cafe type thing, purely because the workers were standing outside the door and telling us to come into the restaurant.

Went to the Ladies Market after dinner, I loved it there. My sister got some really nice hairclips. Originally supposed to be HK$98. Tried out my Canto and she said we could have it for HK$80. We agreed, except that I only had HK$60 in my pocket. So she let us have it for that amount. That was so cool! Ah, I love markets...

Day Two -- 21/1/06
We went to Tsim Tsar Tsui (argh, hope that's the correct spelling!) today, just looking around at the shops. Heaps of people!

Went back to the Ladies market at night, bought more stuff. One store owner grabbed my arm and said, "Missy, Missy, moe jow ah" (Missy, don't leave -- see how great my Canto is?). I ended up buying a jacket from her. Great salespeople in HK.

Day Three -- 22/1/06
Went to Ocean Park today. Pretty much like Adventure World and Underwater World combined. Except bigger. And better. And more people. Saw a dolphin show. It was great!

Gor, Gee and me went to Ladies market again (I love that place!) Bought more stuff. Went to Macca's afterward, I ordered in English and mucked up the whole order. :]

Ocean Park crowds

Day Four -- 23/1/06
Woke up at 4.30am to get to the airport, as we had booked a tour of some parts of China. Got on the plane. The airline was called Dragonair, but turned out to be an Aussie pilot. The flight only took 1.45 hours to get to Hangzhou (our first stop). So no TV or anything on the plane.

China was freezing! I was so under prepared for the climate. Imagine Perth in winter time, around 5-6am in the morning. It was like that all day. Except colder. Got on the tour bus, our tour group had 20 people. We went to a restaurant first. One thing we noticed was that there were a LOT of waiters/waitresses at the restaurant, even though out tour group were the only people there. And the people there looked younger than my sister.

Went to West Lake, scary to see so many police officers around. Crossing the road is hilarious (and scary!) because China drivers are mad! We were at a zebra crossing and the tour guide said, "We better all go together because it'll be dangerous." So we crossed as a big group, but cars were still zooming through, beeping. Whoa man. But West Lake was so pretty, and the Chinese keep it so clean. Actually, China is clean, you hardly ever see any litter around the place. And yet I always see people spitting/urinating on the sides of roads. Isn't that sort of ironic?

West Lake

Day Five -- 24/1/06
Went to a tea factory - called Dragon Well Tea or something. It's some sort of magic tea. Not only will it cure what ails you, it can also make you slimmer. Cleans our your digestive system too. It also turns black rice into white rice. And turns iodine into tea. Magic tea. We also went to a Chrysanthemum tea factory. No magic this time, but the buds were vey pretty. And it tasted better than the Dragon Well tea.

Went on the tour bus and headed to Suzhou. After dinner we walked around some Suzhou markets. I bought 4 paris of socks for RMB$10. That's like less than AUD50c a pair! Wow!

I can't remember where this was, it was either Hangzhou or Suzhou.

Day Six -- 25/1/06
Went to a silk factory. Very interesting and educational. The silk is so soft! And how do you know if it's real silk? The real silk won't really burn (can't catch fire easily) and it gives off white smoke.

Headed to Shanghai after this, went shopping at night in a Shanghai street. Heaps of people. Heaps!!!! And I thought HK has heaps of people! And everything was lighted up! Massive billboards! Gor, Gee and me walked around the street for awhile, and Gor was harassed by this small girl selling flowers. She wouldn't let him go! Kept on pushing him and holding him down. Got a little scary, luckily there was another family from the tour group there and they told her to nick off. When the family left, another flower girl came up to us and started harassing us again. So we quickly ran into a really busy shop and hid there for awhile. Craziness.

Silkworms!

Shanghai Lights

Shanghai skyline

Day Seven -- 26/1/06
Saw more of Shanghai today. We went to Soon Ching Ling's house. Her husband was Sun Yatsen (apologies if I have any names wrong, I suck at Chinese names. How embarassment!), and her sister's husband was Chiang Kai-Shek. We had to wear shower caps on our feet when we wnt into the house. And we weren't allowed to go upstairs or take pictures.

After lunch we went to some back streets thing of Shanghai, had a ride on one of those canal boats. My Dad kept on saying he was seasick, but then he would purposely rock the boat even more.

Went to a pearl factory. Basically all the women looked at all the pearls while the men just stood around. This grandpa from the tour group kept on telling me to get my Dad to buy me some pearls for my wedding.

Hope you guys had a nice Australia Day as well!

One of those canal boats

Day Eight -- 27/1/06
Last day of the tour. We went to some Shanghai marketplace (which was packed). We only had half an hour to shop, so Gee, me and Roz (a girl from the tour) went "power shopping". I only had RMB$100 left (less than AUD$20) and wanted to spend it all. I bought a bag, jeans, shoes, and toys for my autistic kids -- all for less than 20 bucks Aussie! Lots of hand signals used to try to bargain, as none of us could speak Mando.

Plane ride was really fun as Gor switched seats with Roz so us girls just mucked around, trying our broken English accents. Hilarious stuff.

Our Tour Group

Day Nine -- 28/1/06
Didn't do much today, we all slept in (at the YMCA Hotel). Went to some computer arcade street thing, lots of people there as well.

Watched TV at night, for some bizarre reason Home and Away was on TV. And it was a super old episode! Vinnie hadn't even married Leah yet, or gotten in jail and died in a jail fire... (I should spell it as gaol, but that looks funny)

Day Ten -- 29/1/06

Happy Chinese NY everybody. We went to Macau today, via the ferry. Again, some dude approached us at the ferry terminal, this time asking us if we wanted a tour of Macau (don't worry this dude actually did work for a tour company). So we drove around for awhile, looking at statues and stuff.

Many of the shops were closed, so there wasn't much to see after the tour. So we went back to the hotel.

Day Eleven -- 30/1/06

Went to Shenzhen today. Not much to say about this, we didn't really see much of it. Went into a shopping centre, looking around and stuff.

There was a fireworks display near our hotel at night, so there were so many people around! Wow!

Don't think I've ever seen so many people in my life!

Day Twelve -- 31/1/06
Last day of holiday. Finally met up with the elusive Hidi-san. Who, might I add, has become quite Asian. We went to Sha Tin and Kowloon Tong. And basically what we did today was look around for a present for Dorcas. How depressing! And yes, I did experience an extremely packed train.

Left for the airport quite early, for our so-called "red-eye" flight. 11.30pm to 7.00am, what a killer. Thanks again Dorcas for picking us up. :]

Came back to Perth on Feb 1st. Good to be home! Heard some dude on the plane saying (in Canto), "Son, we're in Australia now! Look at the nice air!" Or something to that effect. Heehee, I love Perth.

I have to say that we were really blessed on this trip, what with people coming up to us to ask us if we needed transport etc. As well as this, the tour group was great, we made friends with everyone. And there was a girl my age and a guy my bro's age so that was pretty cool too. :]

I can't mention all the funny things that happened on this trip, it'll take too long. And this post is long enough already. So I hope everyone has a blessed 2006. Woohoo!

No random quote, how about a random picture?

Gotta love those signs...



12 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous is really cool because Anonymous Anonymous said...

me asian? you gotta be glad I made out a day just for you ar-lee-son!
and the "I believe I can fly" song, eeek.
i dont know what else to say, but i hope you enjoy the day :) thanks fr being a nice company too
hidi
p.s. no wonder metropole hotel sounded so familiar wahaha. people now called it M Hotel. as well as in those documentary.

10:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous is really cool because Anonymous Anonymous said...

Welcome home Alison!!!... Simon Ow

12:47 PM  
Anonymous dorcas is really cool because Anonymous dorcas said...

eeks. should I stay away from you then?

I can't believe you go to China and watched home and away. ahh.

and thanks for the funky stuff. nice. =)

1:02 PM  
Anonymous jul jul is really cool because Anonymous jul jul said...

finally here with us again!!! YAY...

sounds like u had a really good time...tell me more abt it when i see u !!!

7:56 AM  
Blogger Ali is really cool because Blogger Ali said...

Yeah, thanks Hidi for taking time out of your busy busy schedule to see me. :]

Everyone in my family got sick, except for me. Should I be worried?

9:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous is really cool because Anonymous Anonymous said...

lol ar-lee-son, probably because you missed out the awesome dim sum they all had on the last day :]
one week to go for the drama! Eeek! Stress!
hidi

9:02 PM  
Blogger Tralagal is really cool because Blogger Tralagal said...

hey!
i wouldn't risk burning ANY shirt to find out if it was made of silk or not! ha! but good to know :)
looks like you had tons of fun. NYU just opened a NYU-Shanghai campus... if things work out, I -might- be there in September! Kinda depends on what classes they offer though.

7:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous is really cool because Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Leng Loi!

So good to know you had so much fun in HK and China.. you've evolved into one happening chick now since the hols! Heh =)

Anyways, I reckon its a good thing that you're still in the pink of health.. Keep it that way!

Btw did you get my sms the day before you went on your trip? Was telling you that Mr Blue Hippo has been a good companion, awesome-ly huggable =)

Miss hanging out with you and the rest of the Chan gang.. Catch you when i return next month!

Heaps of love,
shar

2:32 PM  
Blogger Ali is really cool because Blogger Ali said...

Good luck for the drama Hidi, I'm sure you'll win! Heh...

Wow Cass, Shanghai.. Sounds cool! Too many people for me though...

Shaarroooonnnnnnnnn........ didn't get your sms, sorry! Hope you're having a spanking time in s'pore. :]

6:10 PM  
Blogger Ali is really cool because Blogger Ali said...

Ooh, and Home and Away rocks! But I don't watch it at home, only when I'm away.

Hahahahahaha, laugh at my cool joke.

6:12 PM  
Blogger Tralagal is really cool because Blogger Tralagal said...

haha really? guess that's to be expected of cities tho! :)

anyways, that's a cool random picture, btw! :)

8:54 PM  
Anonymous marip0sa@msn.com is really cool because Anonymous marip0sa@msn.com said...

I dont know you but you stayed at the same hotel as me at the same time!!! Wow :) We are connected through soompi and the good old metropole!

5:35 PM  

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