Colourful Hong Kong

Colourful Hong kong

With the weekend in full swing, are our search for accommodation continuing; We headed out to Kowloom to see some apartments that promised reasonable (HK reasonable means $$$ everywhere else) rent, and a sea view.

Test Commute

Before going to look at a new area, we head to my office - which is in Central - so HSBC/Bank of China area, and then start commuting to the new area. It gives us a sense of effort, which Google Map does not express very well in terms of steps, overpasses etc.

Dora as always dresses for the occasion .... and today she was looking like this

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There is a small park near our accommodation - as and I was waiting for the bus .... well it seemed a shame not too.

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Off towards Central

The route to Central looks a little like this

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Nice and quite this morning.

But as we get close to Central the traffic soon builds up.

Can anyone identify the black car in front of the bus ? I am assuming the dual number plates are for cars that regularly cross the border. Not sure why this is necessary but on the luxury cars (which abound here) it is quite common.

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Did you guess Bentley ? If not - do not worry there is another car identity question later.

Flying Ball Company

After seeing 2 apartments both of which I could not lie down in the master bedroom - max length wall to wall of 185 cm !! - I needed cheering up; Actually the agent was laughing so much, no-one was really that upset; Ourselves included.

I am still exploring the idea of trying to cycle here - Not to commute - but maybe in the early mornings at the weekend.

The quest of a cycle - took us the the aptly named - yet remarkably famous Flying Ball Company. What an excellent shop - bikes for everyone - even me !! With prices from Ok - to Ouch that's expensive.

As we pottered around the area we looked at some of the various buildings

Scaffolding

Yes, you read that correct. Why here in Hong Kong they use bamboo I do not know, but they use it everywhere and it looks really secure.

This is what a rather oldish building looks from the outside - I've made it B&W to emphasize its blandness.

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But not all buildings here are like this ...

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Yep Dora was here also :)

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A small scaffolding job.

And some colourful street scenes.

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And what sports car was being fixed ?

If your answer was Lotus - congrats.

Kennedy Bus

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We had a busy day planned today, I wanted to accomplish the following

- Ham Radio Shop
- Buy some Electronics
- Go see realtor
- View Properties
- Relax

Alas as we were standing for the Bus, both of our mobile phones developed that horrible 21st century disease - NO INTERNET.

This is what the area looks like.

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Find CSL

We then played the "can you remember where the CSL shop is".

5 mins on a Tram later, and then after asking we pretty much walked back to where we had started !! Laugh ? I almost cried....

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A very pleasant man - showed us the hidden menu on the CSL Web page - so we could activate the data..... And we were cured.

Alas the timescale was rather compromised.

Bus time

I really like the bus in Hong Kong - they drive like racing drivers. Do not ever thing of moving around without having a firm grip of the hand rail here.

Dora - was ready for the day ahead....

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In full exploring mode as you can see.

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Night-time HK

Typhoon ? !

On getting back from the office, I noticed the doorway to the apartment had a prominent sign informing me that there was a Typhoon Level 1 Warning.

Warnings

Alas there seems to be no global standard for Typhoons, In Philippines the range is 1-5 which means "Get Ready"/"Prepare to possibly die". Hong Kong seems to have a little more granularity to this system with numbers from 1-10.

So I have reinterpreted the Typhoon warning to being in Filipino speak "A normal day - no worries." fn

Evening thunder

We did get some good bangs of thunder, which seem to echo rather like your voice in a canyon off the multitude of sky-scrapers that adorn the HK sky-line.

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In normal non BW light.

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Quick exploring HK

Exploring HK

We have been out and exploring for the last day of my retirement.

We came back from looking at more apartments, travelling on the Bus (our new favourite transport mechanism).

Alas there seems to be some form of an issue ... fn

Bikes

I was interested to see what type of bike the Ambulance riders, were using - looks like a big Honda (Pan-European ?) .

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I am a little sad, I was hoping to see a nice BMW.

Kowloom heading back to HK Island

Some massive buildings in Kowloom, no clue what they will be !!. fn

Big buildings

When I mean big - I mean BIG !!

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1st day of work, tomorrow...

Hong Kong day 1

Hong Kong

With a new "first day" at work, approaching. It seemed a good idea to go and get to grips with the local transport system, something which we had read was very efficient and well organised.

Additionally we need to start to try and find an area to live in, and then an apartment.

Apps

It seems a little sad to start of my HK Travel page recommending an App that you can use on your Phone, but if you are visiting HK - please have a look at the app called Moovit, think Lemurs from Madagascar and you will not forget the app.

The MTR

Like most major cities the Metro/Underground/MTR is a quick, cheap and quite comprehensive way of moving around. Our chosen destination was the area called South Horizons, which meant getting the MRT from Admiralty.

This is a new line, and unfortunately required us to walk down 5 levels, which seemed a little not so user friendly. However once on the train, we sped along, passed under the impressive mountain which dominates Hong Kong island, and popped out near Ocean Park.

At this point 95% of the train got off, it is summer time, kids holidays - and a trip to a theme park, with aquatic animals is obviously high on the parents and children's agenda here in HK.

South Horizons

We spend a couple of hours looking around, in fact looking at 2 or 3 apartments almost off the South Island; One apartment looked quite inviting, but as we were on a fact finding mission not a "we must find a place to live" we will go and see some more (guess what we are doing tomorrow ?)

Return to Ikea

Yes, you read that correct. Along with looking for a new place to live, we also need to put some furniture into the place. Dora, who has never shopped at Ikea - was quite excited about this.

To get a different point of view, we decided to take the bus from South Horizons to Ikea in the main shopping area close to Causeway Bay. Normally travelling by Bus as a tourist (which is what we really are still), is very difficult - getting on (and off) the correct bus is not without some issues.

But (last and final plug for Moovit) with a nice App - it was a real breeze. We watched from the top of the bus, the bus stops tick by, and 500m to go we were given a warning that we needed to get off. It could not be more easy. Sadly I did try this app in Oman before we left, and despite the infusion of more buses - there was no data.

Ikea on a weekend

Sadly I can not recommend this experience, shopping has never been one of my favourite pastimes - the Ikea store is large, comprehensive - and was packed. There were people catching a sleep on a chair, bed, it looked like some "young people" were almost having a group date/private party in some of the show-case rooms.

Even Dora, commented this was not a good place to visit at the weekend, sadly I agreed with her saying "I have to work in the week alas"... Let us see if this is the end of the Ikea experience (I doubt it).

Returning home

Feeling braze we again took a bus - this time having to change buses. We did manage to get home, with little hassle - and rewarded ourselves with a rest, promising ourselves a small treat a little later on.

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Leaving Oman

Bye bye Sultanate of Oman

After a couple of "will they go" moment over the past few years, we finally took the plunge and decided to see what life had planned for us outside Oman.

We have had an amazing time in Oman, 25 years and 3 days in my case. It is still a good place to live, so do not hesitate in taking a position in the country.

We thank the people, our friends and the company I used to work for - for being kind, honest and loyal. We hope we have repaid that in our efforts in and out of work.

A new page in our lives now starts....

2017 UK Boxing Day

Boxing Day 2017

After a nice Christmas day, Dora and I went to see the sales in Middlesbrough.

We then headed to Redcar to have some sea air..... Brrrr very chilly.

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Skyline Cathederal and bye bye

Skyline

After a very busy previous day, we needed something a little more gentle. So we headed over to what is called The Skyline, built along an abandoned subway track, it is an urban garden, that moves through Chelsea, what appears to be a rapidly developing suburb of NYC.

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They have left the train tracks, in the midst of the concrete in places, and there are a few station platforms now grassed over. It is an excellent place to visit.

Around the footpath are some very varied architectural projects.

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Rockefeller

We now headed over to the Rockefeller centre, seeing the Filipino Embassy (nice place on 5th Street - closed of course as it was a public holiday in Manila !), bloody civil servants !!

Then we went to look inside the Cathedral which is opposite, as it was All Souls Day, there was an organ recital going on, and the place was quite busy.

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Time Square

We then walked towards Time Square, past the new stations, NBC, Fox, NASDAQ etc They were setting up for some outside broadcasts as it was the final of the very exciting World Series of baseball (Houston won in case you missed it).

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Juliet got those final last minute presents.... and more last second, ms etc

Gallery

There are some more photos including these in the gallery.