Mediocrity

I watched the second episode of Goblin, my new Korean drama. It was actually quite mediocre compared to the first episode, I was rather disappointed! It got a very high rating on mydramalist.com, and the first episode lived up to this rating, so I’m quite surprised that it’s already starting to lose its appeal. I hope it picks up soon, otherwise I may just have to abandon this drama and move on to the next one πŸ˜” But I do want to give this one a chance, as some dramas that I’ve watched in the past have started off slow, but then got really good as the drama continued, so I shouldn’t be so hasty! πŸ˜†

And then we watched the Detective Pikachu movie tonight. The PokΓ©mon were sooo cuuute! But apart from them, I didn’t think much of the rest of the movie, unfortunately. Ryan Reynolds was his usual funny self, so that helped, but yeah, not much else going for this movie πŸ˜”

And coupled with some pretty ordinary trading today, basically my Friday was filled with mediocrity ☹️

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A movie and a drama

** Warning: Dark Phoenix spoiler alert below **

We somehow managed to get out of the house by 8:30am today – on a SUNDAY. That was total amazeballs. I didn’t think we’d be able to do it. They have cheaper movie tickets for the 9am sessions, compared to sessions later in the day, so this was a good enough reason for us to try and make it to the cinema early πŸ˜† HK is generally a night time city, which makes me all the more inclined to try and turn into a morning person while we’re here, simply to avoid the crowds that are everywhere in this city, especially on weekends. I’ll keep you posted on how this is working out… or not πŸ˜‚

We watched the new X-Men movie, Dark Phoenix. I actually had no idea what the movie was about, just that Sansa was in it πŸ˜‚ Apparently she plays Jean Grey. I was actually enjoying the movie, until people started dying – ie people who are still alive when the first X-Men movie finished. And if you go by the timeline of it all, I thought this movie would fit somewhere more like a prequel. So why did these characters die??

And there was no Wolverine, which doesn’t make sense either because this was set some time before the first ever X-Men movie, as McAvoy and Fassbender are playing the younger versions of Professor Xavier and Magneto respectively, and ditto with the other actors who were playing characters who were featured in the first film. But no Wolverine probably has more to do with Hugh Jackman probably not wanting to reprise his role any longer, so I reckon there were more external factors at play with this omission more than anything else, so this one didn’t bother me too much.

And then, Professor Xavier “retires”, and the movie ends with the school being named the “Jean Grey School”. Seriously, what the f is all this about?!? I am confused and at a complete loss as to where they’re taking this. So unless these characters somehow come back to life in the next film, and they somehow get the story back on the right track, they may have lost me as a fan πŸ˜” It’s quite sad. Especially as it is supposed to be in memory of Stan Lee. I would be turning in my grave if I were Stan πŸ˜’

We then went and had yum cha (of course πŸ˜‹) before heading back home. I took a quick nap, as the early morning start was just that: early. And then I just binge-watched more of The Heirs, my current Korean drama, while N went to karate. I’m getting close to the end, so now I’m keen to just finish it off! It’s quite good, of course, I’m really enjoying it. It’s so crazy and out there, which is one of the main reasons why I watch these dramas. They’re just fun and silly, and takes you out of reality for just that little while 😊

Rounding out the month

I got up at ridiculous o’clock this morning for no reason whatsoever. And so my morning ended up being quite productive as a result. Every time I get up early, I always seem to get a ton of stuff done in the morning, so I don’t know why I don’t get up earlier more often… Maybe that could be my goal for June 😊

N came back from Taiwan today, so we decided to go out for dinner. The pizzeria we went to plays retro music – ie music from our era πŸ˜† A few songs that we heard tonight:

  • Truly Madly Deeply – Savage Garden
  • Torn – Natalie Imbruglia
  • This Kiss – Faith Hill
  • You’re Still The One – Shania Twain
  • All My Life – K-Ci & Jojo

And then a few Celine Dion songs and a Mariah Carey song, I can’t remember which ones now.

So it has a pretty cool atmosphere! Plus even though it’s a restaurant, it’s really casual, and doesn’t actually have a door, you just sorta walk in. So it’s got a bit of a front courtyard feel, if that makes sense. Their service is great and their food is good too. It’s a bit farther up on the mid-levels escalator, and not many people tend to go up that far, so it’s also pretty quiet there. It was a bit pricey, as western food tends to be in this city, but ok for the occasional dinner.

We then went home and watched Hello Mrs Money, this Chinese movie that N started watching on the plane but didn’t finish. It wasn’t all that great, really. It was funny at times, but for the most part, it just wasn’t all that great. I should’ve used it more for listening practice – ie something to be studied – rather than reading the English subtitles and enjoying it as a movie, because there really wasn’t much enjoyment to be gained from it πŸ˜†

And here I end May. Bring on June, I say, and a brand new season – my favourite. YEAH!! β˜€οΈ Unfortunately, apparently this also means typhoon season in HK, so I’m a little concerned with that… I’m not sure just how bad these typhoons can get, and I can only go by the terrible damage The Big Almighty One did last year… 😟 Was that a particularly bad one, or are they more or less of that magnitude nowadays?? Unfortunately we will be here to find out…!

YouTube

** Warning: Downton Abbey and Game of Thrones spoilers below **

I was going through the recommended list of YouTube clips on my home page, and came across this: the official trailer for the upcoming Downton Abbey movie!! Omg I’m sooo excited! I loved this series, it was really good. And based on the trailer, it seems like the entire cast is back for the movie! Well, the ones who weren’t killed off before the series ended, that is – the number of people who left or died in that series rivalled the number in Game of Thrones πŸ˜‚ I wasn’t expecting that at all when I first started watching the show. I’m used to casts staying on for the entire duration of a series, and maybe the odd person leaving every now and then. So it threw me off when I started watching Downton, and regular cast members just kept dropping off like flies! It keeps you on your toes, that’s for sure πŸ˜‚

YouTube has also been an endless resource for me for my language learning. I’ve been watching a ton of polyglot videos, as I’ve mentioned before, and I also watch YouTube clips on learning Chinese, as well as clips that have been posted by native Chinese speakers for other native speakers. This last category is really tough, as you can imagine, even if it’s just general banter, as native speakers, regardless of the language, always speak fast! But I persevere anyway, hoping that through osmosis, I am still picking up the odd word here and there. I mix it up between stuff for native speakers and stuff that’s been dumbed down for learners of the language, so I am still exposed to the natural speed of native speakers but also not totally discouraged, as I still listen to and learn from the ones that are more tailored to language learners, which also still has English translations. Like I said, Youtube is an endless resource, so I can watch either type whenever I want. Plus a lot of the clips have subtitles as well, so that helps me too, especially since my listening is still really poor. And best of all: it’s free! 😊

Consistency

I changed my settings on my phone today so that the default language is Chinese. So now virtually everything looks like this:

I’m doing ok so far, but I can barely read anything at the moment! I am going by memory most of the time to find where things are πŸ˜‚ I am constantly looking up words. But I figured that once I get over the initial hurdle, things will get easier after a few weeks (or even better, days?!), and I’ll also have added even more vocab to my slowly-growing list. I am trying to go with as much immersion as I can. Let’s see how this little experiment goes…

We went and had yum cha again today. There is a seemingly endless number of restaurants that do yum cha in this city! Sooo good! πŸ˜‹ Anyway, when the bill came, which was in Chinese yet again, I surprised myself when I could in fact read the entire bill without having to consult the dictionary. That is pretty exciting for me! It feels like this web of Chinese language “stuff” that I’m growing is actually getting tighter, and at quite a faster rate than I expected. I’m focusing on doing something – anything – every day, to make sure I am progressing daily. It doesn’t matter how much I do, just as long as I do something, I just need to make sure that I keep the momentum going. And it all seems to be helping. It’s that consistency that I keep going on about, I tell you. So exciting! 😊

We watched two Marvel movies tonight: Doctor Strange and Thor: Ragnarok. I’ve seen Doctor Strange before, but I don’t really remember anything about the movie, so I basically enjoyed it all over again today πŸ˜† And I’ve been enjoying the Thor movies, and this one didn’t disappoint either. We just need to watch three more movies (Black Panther and Captain Marvel, and Avengers: Infinity War), and then we’ll be fully ready for Endgame. I can’t believe we’ve watched almost all of them these past few months. Perhaps we can soon move on to the DC Comics movies now… πŸ€“

Books and movies

I went to Eslite today, a bookstore in Causeway Bay, looking for some Chinese language books. That’s not quite I found, though. The Chinese books were all in Chinese! They must be for more advanced learners. They had a much better range of books for English learners, for Chinese native speakers, so I was tempted to go in the “opposite” direction, to see how they phrase English sentences in Chinese. But it’s a bit odd reading text where all the English is in larger font than the Chinese, I’d feel like I was ignoring the main point of the book πŸ˜‚

They also had a good range of chinese books for children. They even had Harry Potter in Chinese! But I may leave that for a later time when my reading is a bit more advanced… So instead, I went over to Roald Dahl‘s books…. πŸ˜† Man they are lonnng when I see the size of the book, knowing it is all in Chinese! So even his books looked a bit intimidating 😫 Who would’ve thought I’d ever say that about Roald Dahl’s books?! πŸ€ͺ

So I ended up not buying anything and decided to just continue making my way through the bilingual version of The Little Prince that I borrowed from the library. At least I have the English in that to help me work my way through it. If I can successfully finish that book, then perhaps I can move on to something else. But even this book is an effort and a half! So many new words and sentence structures… I guess it’s all part and parcel of learning another language!

We watched Ant-Man and the Wasp tonight. I like the Ant-Man movies, there are a lot of funny moments throughout the movie, so it’s not all action, which doesn’t really interest me. So maybe we can get through the other two movies tomorrow, Captain Marvel and Thor: Ragnarok, the last remaining movies in the Marvel series before Endgame.

Marvel series

** spoiler alert re Spider-Man: Homecoming **

We watched Spider-Man: Homecoming tonight. I was actually a bit disappointed, as it was a bit too “teenager-y” for me. He was just being a silly teenager for a lot of the movie, which I just found rather frustrating. But Ironman featured a few times in the movie, which I didn’t expect, and he always has some amusing lines, so that kept things a bit more interesting. And things did get better towards the end, but the lead up to it was pretty blah, unfortunately.

We actually have six more movies left to watch in the series, and I’ve already seen three of them, so I’m thinking of skipping those and just watching the other three, so we can go and watch Avengers: Endgame at the cinema on the weekend. So tomorrow we’re planning on watching Ant-Man and The Wasp, and then Captain Marvel, if we can squeeze it in. And then that just leaves Thor: Ragnarok, and then I’ll be ready for Endgame! πŸ‘ I think it would be nice to see all six movies before Endgame, though, so let’s see what we can get through this weekend… Ambitious, much? Let’s see… πŸ˜‰