Nail in the coffin

** Spoiler alert: Game of Thrones finale**

It wasn’t the best of days. I was feeling rather down today, and couldn’t really shake it off all day. So as a result, it wasn’t the most productive of days πŸ˜” I ended up just reading / studying a bit more of my Chinese version of The Little Prince, and then watched a few more episodes of Nice Witch, my current Korean drama. It’s finally getting good! I’m glad I decided to persevere with it. It’s the usual over-the-top drama with a ridiculous plot, but I find that part of the appeal πŸ˜†

And then I ended the day with the most disappointing episode of Game of Thrones ever. It was really underwhelming, given how good the rest of the series was. And it was the final episode of the entire series, which made it even more disappointing. Just the final nail in the coffin of an already shite day, really. Sighhh… Fingers crossed tomorrow will bring more fun and happiness than what today brought 🀞

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Karate, yum cha, and my new book

We went to watch a karate comp at Happy Valley today. We got there pretty early (well, early for us πŸ˜†) as one of N’s friends was competing earlier in the day, and he wanted to get there early to watch her event. We ended up staying for pretty much the entire day! But sitting up in the stands is definitely much better than having to wait out the back, waiting for your events to be called and then waiting again for your results 😊

We briefly stepped out for lunch at Causeway Bay, trying yet another yum cha place. Yum cha is everywhere in this city, it’s sooo good! Well I guess it is The Source πŸ˜† The one we went to today, though, was pretty mediocre and very overpriced, so we won’t be going back there again! I’m surprised it wasn’t all that great, because there was a crowd outside when we arrived, waiting to be seated, so I was expecting the food to be good. Nope, that wasn’t the case at all πŸ˜’

Anyway, we’re going back to watch the second day of the comp tomorrow, so maybe we’ll try another yum cha restaurant nearby. Or maybe we’ll just eat something completely different and move on from yum cha, that’s a possibility too 😊 Let’s see how we feel tomorrow…

I also finally decided to buy Antoine de Saint- ExupΓ©ry’s The Little Prince – in Chinese 😱 They had a good version of it at The Commercial Press, this bookstore that caters specifically for children. One of my local friends introduced me to it, and this is the first time I’ve returned to it. It’s a treasure trove of books for Chinese language learners like me! I wanted to buy a paper version so I could write in it to help me learn the language. I’m three pages in and I absolutely love it! I want to quickly finish the English version so I know the story, to help me with the translating part when I read it in Chinese. It’s at a really good difficulty level, it’s not too hard like high school level books, but it’s also not too easy, like books aimed at infants. It’s at primary school level, which I think is perfect for me. I’m not looking up every second word, but enough so that I am learning new words. The sentence structures are at my level as well, so I haven’t come across anything yet where I was like “wth does this mean??” πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ Plus I love the author’s writing style – in the English version, of course. I wouldn’t know what any Chinese writing style is at this stage in my learning! πŸ˜‚ Anyhow, long story short, I’m so happy I bought it!

Feeling positive

I had quite a productive day today, successfully working on all my main goals today: my Chinese, my trading and my fitness πŸ‘

I went to the gym for the first time in aaages, ever since I got sick, so I didn’t feel all that strong today. But I just wanted to get back into the routine of going, so I achieved that, at least. But then about half an hour in, my earphones ran out of juice πŸ”‹ And I do my dance practice in the second half of my gym session, and my earphones died on me right when I needed them. Isn’t that lovely πŸ˜’ But that’s ok, at least I went, I just needed to get back into it today, that was really my only goal today.

And then we watched the latest episode of Game of Thrones. It’s still making me interested in reading the book series, so I’ve pulled out book one from the study – N has the whole series πŸ“– It’s thick as! πŸ˜† Like I mentioned before, it’s not a genre that I usually read, so I’m not sure if I’ll enjoy it, but I’ll give it a go anyway. I’m enjoying the tv series, so I’m hoping that I’ll get some level of enjoyment from the books too 🀞

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.

Trying to keep things interesting

I spent pretty much all day on our finances, so you can imagine just how unbelievably boring my day was πŸ˜‚ But it was the end of the month, and I just felt like it would be a nice way to finish off the month, which is what made me persevere through the extreme boredom.

And then in the evening, I just did some more Chinese study. I wrote out a few sentences from the Chinese half of The Little Prince book, and studied them in more detail. I also compared the Chinese in my book to the one that she was reading in this YouTube clip, which was slightly different – and actually very different at times. I found my book easier to understand, so maybe my one is aimed more for kids, hence perhaps why the book was in the kids’ section of the library 😊 But I like watching and listening to the YouTube clip so I can hear a native speaker reading it, and also see the text that she’s reading, so I can read along with her and try and emulate her pronunciation.

N is now sick too, btw. We seem to get sick more often in the city. I’m always sick, so that’s no surprise, but for him to also be sick almost as often as me is a big surprise πŸ˜” What’s the dealio, HK??

New ideas

Do you remember my other blog that I started sometime last year? Well I sorta abandoned it when we moved to HK, while we were just settling into this city. Anyway, I’m thinking of actually deleting it and starting a brand new one: writing about my language journey as I learn Mandarin. And then hopefully other languages in the future as I continue on this lifelong journey. I’m really enjoying the journey, and I think it would be nice to have a written record of it, to see the frustrations as well as the triumphs, and to share with others on a similar journey the numerous resources that I’ve come across that have helped me (or still helping me) improve my Mandarin. Anyway, it’s just an idea at the moment, but one that is certainly piquing my interest 😊

We had bak kut teh for dinner tonight! πŸ˜‹ N bought a few bak kut teh packet mixes from the supermarket in SG while he was there for work last week. Ah SG, how I miss you πŸ˜”

And then we watched the latest episode of Game of Thrones (season 8 episode 3) while we ate our bak kut teh. Stressful episode! But a damn good one. I don’t know how many more episodes are left, surely they’re close to wrapping up the series? I am thinking of making my way through the books now, surely they’re just as good as the tv series, if not better?? It’s not quite the genre that I like to read, so I’m not sure how I’ll find them. Maybe I’ll give the first book a go anyway. I’ll let you know 😊

β€œForced” to spend the morning outside

They were cleaning the water tanks in our apartment building this morning, so I went and spent the morning outside. I had a leisurely morning tea, and then headed over to the library to read my trading textbook for a while. While I was there, I also decided to borrow The Little Prince, a book that I stumbled upon the other day. The library’s version has both English and Chinese, so I figured that will be good reading practice, especially since it’s a children’s book and so is quite easy to read. It’s a huuuge step up from my “Where’s Spot?” Chinese equivalent books that I’ve been reading πŸ˜‚ So it may be a bit ambitious for me. Even if it is, the story is quite entertaining anyway, so at least I can enjoy the English half 😊

After another shite trading session, I decided to vent my frustration at the gym – and actually ended up having a good sesh there! πŸ’ͺ I was quite proud of my effort 😊

And then we just watched an episode of our current Cantonese drama, The Exorcist’s Meter. I can’t believe I’m not obsessed with a Korean drama at the moment, actually. I think I’ve just been so focussed on my goals that I haven’t really cared too much about tv. That and the fact that I haven’t found an addictive series to get into! πŸ˜‚ So if anyone has any recommendations, send them my way! 😊