HK Space Museum

We went to the HK Space Museum today. It’s located in Tsim Sha Tsui, right next to Victoria Harbour, and so really easy to get to. They have a planetarium in there, and we watched two docos today. I forgot that these types of shows give me motion sickness 🀒 I had to shut my eyes a few times in both sessions, as I just couldn’t handle all the motion. I should’ve just followed my two neighbours on either side of me during the first doco and just fell asleep. Not only would I have skipped all the motion sickness, but I also would have been a little more rested! πŸ˜‚ But the two shows were good, though.

We wandered around the museum itself before and after the docos. It’s quite an interactive place, and a perfect place to take older kids to learn a thing or two while also having fun. It’s a pretty small museum with only two rooms, but if you actually want to read all the information that they have there, it’ll still take you a while to get through. But if you’re just there for the kids who just want to play with all the interactive games, it won’t take you that long to get through the two rooms, an hour max, maybe, unless they just want to run around and play all the games multiple times.

It cost something like HK$10 ($A1) for one adult (excluding the docos), and I think kids / concession tickets are half price, so it’s a pretty cheap day out for a family. And even the docos at HK$32 (A$6) for one adult ain’t too bad. The docos are in Cantonese, but they supply each seat with wireless headphones where you can select English (or Mandarin or Japanese) narration. All very hi-tech these days!

The Space Museum apparently falls under the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, which I believe is a government department. And any time these guys are involved, unlike almost everything else in HK, the prices are really affordable, so I assume the HK government must heavily subsidise stuff that falls in these guys’ jurisdiction. Maybe I need to find more activities that these guys look after 😊

But as I’ve mentioned in previous posts, with almost everything touristy in HK, signage is horrendous. Note that tickets are actually purchased outside, so don’t bother going inside first, as no doubt they’ll tell you to buy your tickets outside. So of course this means braving the HK weather, whether that be the heat or the rain when it’s typhoon season πŸ™„ They recently renovated the museum, so you’d think they would’ve brought the ticketing inside somehow, but no. No they haven’t πŸ˜’

Also, the planetarium tickets get sold out, so if you’re really keen to go on a particular date and/or time, maybe book in advance, which I think you can do online. And when you purchase your tickets for the permanent exhibition, make sure you keep the stub, as you’ll have to present it when you first enter both of the two rooms. One room is downstairs and the other is upstairs, and you may end up going to a doco in between, so that stub may get lost in all the to-ing and fro-ing. Another slight housekeeping inconvenience that would’ve been nice to have been fixed up as part of the recent renovations, but no. That didn’t happen πŸ˜’ But these are just minor inconveniences. I still enjoyed visiting the museum, and I’d definitely go again, especially at these prices πŸ‘ Maybe when they get new docos in at the planetarium 😊

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Crazy HK weather

Typhoon season in HK apparently coincides with summer, which is a real shame, because I miss out on beautiful summer days. The weather warnings here, as you can appreciate, are very detailed, given the relative frequency of typhoons in this city. For rainstorms, they have three levels – from lightest to heaviest: amber, red and black. We have already seen a few amber warnings, and the rain during these times is quite heavy. You’ll be soaked without an umbrella, and it would be quite nice to be wearing gum boots. I’m nervous to see what the rain that accompanies red and black warnings looks like… Let alone typhoon warnings…! Typhoons apparently happen a handful of times each year, and some are non-events. But the actual “eventful” ones are the ones I really don’t want to experience! I’ll definitely be letting you know how they are when one does eventuate… 😟

So for people thinking of coming by HK for a holiday, I would definitely recommend going during the cooler months, say November to March. The rest of the time it’s just hot and muggy, and then you also have typhoon season to contend with, when your holiday is more likely than not to be washed out πŸ˜”

I started my new Korean drama today: Goblin. It’s looking promising already! The good ones get you hooked right from the first episode, I tell you πŸ˜† It has a supernatural theme, but not in the usual scary, horror way. I prefer this less-scary way 😊 Actually, I haven’t watched one with a supernatural theme in a while, so I’m probably due to watch something in this genre. It’s a short series with only 16 episodes, so I should be done before I even know it. And if the crappy weather continues and staying home is the more appealing option than having to brave the weather outside, I’ll get through the series even faster πŸ˜†

Continued protest on the extradition bill

I knew the protest that started last Sunday was going to continue today, as the legislative council was to meet today to discuss (or perhaps even vote for?!) this proposed new extradition bill that the city – and a number of overseas countries – is up in arms about. So I decided to make my way to Admiralty and watch what could potentially be a historic moment unfold.

It was indeed quite intense. I got there at around 12:30pm, and everything seemed pretty calm at this point. I probably arrived during lunchtime, so everyone was ready to take a break. So I did too 😊 I figured all the protestors would be grabbing lunch somewhere in Admiralty, so I decided to walk to nearby Central and grab something there instead, to avoid the ridiculous crowds.

I went back to Admiralty closer to 2:30pm, as I suspected things might escalate from around 3pm, as the protestors had given the government an ultimatum to scrap the bill by that time. The crowd around the Legislative Council building had built up, and things did start to get a bit intense soon enough. Protestors kept coming around asking for umbrellas, well that’s what I figured they were asking, as people just kept giving them more and more umbrellas, which they were using to defend themselves against the police.

The police eventually fired tear gas into the crowds to try and disperse the protestors, and it was windy enough for the remnants of that tear gas to waft its way over to where I was standing. I thought I was already pretty far enough away from the main action, but the wind made that distance feel much closer. The protestors were actually giving out masks to us mere observers, which I thought was a really kind gesture. But I decided to leave soon after the first round of tear gas was deployed, as it was just getting a bit too intense for my liking. And as I was walking back to Central, they had dispersed a second round of tear gas, which again started to waft where I happen to be walking – and a number of the protestors were also running in my general direction. Greeeat, I was going to get caught in the stampede. But luckily I wasn’t, and I managed to somehow find myself in relative safety πŸ˜…

I decided to go to Lady M in IFC to de-stress, but when I got there, I was told that they were closed, but that I could still order takeaway. Apparently a number of small businesses had chosen to close down today, to allow their staff to participate in today’s protest and also as a sign of solidarity with them. Perhaps Lady M made this decision too.

So I sat outside in a general sitting area just off one of the main roads in Central and ate my slice of Lady M cake 🍰 By this time, ambulances were in full force, with one driving past, blaring its sirens, every few minutes around me πŸ˜” Definitely time to go home.

I then just watched the live broadcast on TV for the next few hours while they had it on. Apparently the intensity had indeed been stepped up a notch or two, so luckily I left when I did.

Quite an intense day πŸ˜₯

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 😊

All about friends

It was all about friends today. We caught up with some old friends back from our uni days who have been living in HK for the past sixteen years. We went and had yum cha (what else, man, it’s HK πŸ˜†) in Causeway Bay and then afterwards we just wandered around a bit and did some shopping.

We then went back home and I just watched a few more episode of The Heirs, my current Korean drama, before heading out again and having dinner and drinks with one of N’s workmates. It was supposed to be with him and his wife, but she got stuck with the parental duties, so she ended up having to go home to attend to the kids. It was quite fun anyhow, but still, hopefully next time it’ll be all four of us. Both him and his wife are also from Sydney, so it was good to just speak normally and be completely understood and not feel like a bogan, like I usually do πŸ˜†

It was a good day 😊

Hong Kong’s southern beaches

It’s yet another public holiday here in HK – they’re very well spaced out here, it seems! πŸ‘ We decided to go check out the dragon boat races in Stanley, on the south end of Hong Kong Island. But N had a pretty sh1t night’s sleep, as he ate something yet again that his stomach didn’t agree with. Unfortunately his stomach doesn’t agree much with him πŸ˜” So he ended up sleeping for most of the day instead. So by the time we left the house, it was already 3:30pm. Maybe the late time helped our cause, because by the time we got to Stanley, it didn’t seem as crowded as I was expecting it to be. I was expecting Causeway-Bay-on-the-weekend type crowds, and Stanley wasn’t anywhere near that when we were there. Not that I’m complaining 😊

We watched a few dragon boat races, and then wandered around nearby Stanley Market for a bit, before just heading back home. It would’ve been nice if we could’ve made a whole day of it, but that’s ok, we still got to see a bit of it nonetheless.

There were actually two other beaches that the bus drove past on the way to Stanley: Deep Water Bay and Repulse Bay. The whole bus trip reminded me of the northern beaches in Sydney, as well as the Bondi-Coogee coastal walk, a sort of blend of the two. It looked like there was a bit of a pedestrian walkway near one of the beaches, so I’m wondering how far this walk is, and which beaches it connects, if it connects them at all. We should try walking it one day!

Pretty damn nice view from the bus! Deep Water Bay
Repulse Bay – how sci fi like are the buildings in this area?!
Dragon boat races at Stanley Main Beach

Planning for tomorrow

I had quite a productive day today. There’s a public holiday here tomorrow, it’s Dragon Boat Festival. I was probably subconsciously trying to make up for losing a work day tomorrow 😊

I am thinking of going more south tomorrow, to Stanley, to watch the dragon boat races. Apparently it’s mega popular, though, so it’s also going to be mega crowded πŸ˜’ I hope it’ll still be fun… fingers crossed! 🀞 I also want to try some zongzi, some glutinous rice dish wrapped in bamboo leaves, stuffed with different fillings. These are apparently traditionally eaten on this day. So hopefully we can find one or two to try! If the crowds are especially crazy, we may just cut the day short and head back somewhere that’s not so dragon boat race focussed – ie where the crowds won’t be! πŸ˜‚

I’ll let you know if we manage to go anywhere, as we are also notorious for wasting public holidays, just hanging out at home and watching tv or playing on our phones 😳