Biting the bullet

We tried to catch up with one of N’s mates from Oz today and go and have yum cha with him and his wife; they’re in HK for a few days for his wife’s work. But it didn’t quite pan out that way, so we just ended up having our usual weekend brunch on our own 😆

We were a bit adventurous today and thought we’d try a place that didn’t have an English menu ðŸ˜ą

Yum cha menu all in Chinese ðŸ˜ą

I know the Chinese for most of the dishes that we like now, so I’m relatively more comfortable walking into these places nowadays, and seeing a yum cha menu entirely in Chinese isn’t as intimidating anymore. Plus it gives me the opportunity to learn a few new dishes, so it’s all good 😊 Dinner menus, on the other hand, are a different story… But we don’t tend to do Chinese for dinner; and if we do, we would normally go with friends who can read Chinese anyway, so they end up doing the ordering 😆

We went to Muji afterwards to buy a portable essential oil diffuser. I’ve been wanting one for ages now, but the under-buyer in me continually stopped me from buying one. But for some reason, something just compelled me to go and buy it today, so I bit the bullet and just went for it. And I absolutely love it! People go on about the health benefits of essential oils, but I just love the smell of bergamot and can’t sniff enough of it, it’s like a drug for me ðŸĪĢ And if it’s a drug that’s good for me, then even better! 👏 I won’t say no to the stuff *sniff sniff* hehehe

My new Muji portable aroma diffuser 😊

New experiences

I went to Muji and Uniqlo today, the former to get some more storage ideas, and the latter to get some additional cold weather gear. People have said that it doesn’t get much colder than what it currently is at the moment (around 15°C / 59°F), so maybe I just need to buy one or two cardigans or jumpers, and I think I’ll be right. It’s not very windy here, surprisingly, so you don’t need a coat or jacket to protect you against any potentially biting winds, which is what killed me/us in Melbourne. So I think I’ll be able to survive the HK winter! 👍

N’s brother flew in to HK this afternoon, so we went and had dinner with him and his mate. His mate now lives in HK too, but they used to be flatmates back in Sydney for over eight years, and they still remain quite tight, which is pretty cool.

Oh and we got a little Christmas tree! It’s 30cm and looks really cute sitting on our dining table, and it’s REAL! Our first real Christmas tree! It’s also our first Christmas that we’re celebrating in winter. I am so excited 😆 New experiences this year for Christmas 🎄

A new favourite store?

I decided to catch the tram from Central to Causeway Bay today. People keep saying it’s the most inefficient form of public transport in HK, but I love it 😆 I wonder if the novelty will ever wear off, and I too will eventually join the group of naysayers bagging out the slowness of the trams. They were slow in Melbourne too. And even though the initial excitement of catching the trams there did eventually wear off, as it always does with anything, I still like them to this day 😊

I went to Muji at Causeway Bay. Apparently one of their larger stores is there, and man, was I glad I went! That store is awesome. It could be one of my new favourite stores, that’s how awesome it was! I so did not expect to like it as much as I did, especially as I am not much of a shopper at all. But that place could potentially turn me into one! 😂 I don’t know what it was about the shop that I liked so much. The ambience? The layout? The colour scheme? The music? Maybe it was a combination of them all that just seemed to gel really well with me. I could soon be an unofficial Muji ambassador! You may be hearing all about Muji in the weeks and months to come 😆 There was Muji in SG too, but it never had the same drawcard as this particular store. And even another store that I’ve been to a few times already didn’t have the same appeal. What was it about this one?!? ðŸĪ”

I bought a few storage containers, but I could’ve easily bought more, if I had more arms (and strength!) to carry them. I may go back tomorrow for round two 😊 Brace yourself for more Muji propaganda…! 😂

I have one more day to wait until our IKEA furniture arrives! Very exciting! I think I’ll be spending Wednesday evening putting the pieces together 😊 I’m not the best at these practical things, but IKEA makes it pretty simple so even inept people like me can put their items together 😂 I can’t wait until we have an actual table in the house. I also can’t believe how excited I am about finally having a table in the house! 😂 So lame 😒 hehehe But if you think about it, you actually do a lot of stuff on a table: eat, write, work, read, study, play games, do arts and crafts… The list goes on. I can’t wait to be able to do all of that on our new table! 😊

Finding a good balance

We got our new mobile numbers today! And we signed up for internet at home too, woohoo! Although the latter is going to take a bit longer to set up, as they have to check whether our apartment is wired up for internet or something (why wouldn’t it be in this day and age?!) and also to install. But the earliest time they can come in and check/install is next Saturday! ðŸ˜ē So now we have to wait again. But by this time next week, all our first world necessities should have arrived, so I just need to wait another seven days… ⏱

We also went and visited IKEA and Muji today. I think today was my fourth visit to IKEA these past two weeks that we’ve been in HK ðŸ˜ē I could practically work there and tell you where everything is! 😂 We went there to buy curtains, but we couldn’t make up our minds at all, so we decided not to get anything and just leave it for another day. We don’t want to spend too much on curtains, as we may not be able to take them with us to our next home. Or can they be extended? I don’t know. I’ve never bought curtains in my life, we’ve always gotten pretty decent ones in all the places that we stayed at before. But this time, we don’t like the ones that have come with the apartment. They look like they’re straight out of the 1970s and have never been updated since ðŸ˜ģ And we’re not a fan of the retro look, so we really want to replace them. But that’s another expense, sighhh… Argh, I have obviously forgotten just how expensive it is to move! ðŸ˜Đ My finance goal this year is completely shot 😔 So home and finance goals are my focus for the short-term, even though gains on one will have a negative impact on the other… So I just have to find a good balance 😊

Speaking of finance goals, we did a bit of grocery shopping tonight. And we were in for a rude shock! The price of eggs, butter and milk were like double what we would pay in SG! ðŸ˜ē I’m hoping that it just happened to be the prices in that particular supermarket, and that other supermarkets would stock these same items at more reasonable prices. Like that time I bought 3 zucchinis in SG for almost S$25 ðŸ˜ē That was obviously the last time I bought zucchinis from that particular supermarket! Hopefully I’ll have a similar story here ðŸĪž

Quick and slow

I spent a few hours with Kitty today. And while we were hanging out, N got an email saying that our furniture has indeed arrived in HK and that we can have it delivered to our new home anytime from Wednesday onwards. We were like yeah, bring it on! So they’re coming Wednesday morning 👍 The wait has gone both quick and slow at the same time, it’s such an odd feeling. So while they’re in the house, I think we’ll keep Kitty in the bathroom, so she is away from all the people and all the noise that they’ll no doubt be making. One more day to wait and we can move in! Yeah! Although technically, we still have the serviced apartment for another three weeks, so we have to figure out how to best use that apartment while we have it… It is closer to N’s work, so maybe we can stay there during the week and then use our actual apartment as our weekend home 😂 We’ll see. I’m sure it’ll work out 😊 I just can’t wait for our furniture to arrive. Hopefully the apartment will feel like home once all our stuff is in there.

I went to Muji today to get some ideas for storage as well as some winter clothes. I’ll have to restock my winter gear as I got rid of almost all of it when we moved to SG. I have kept some for when we go on holidays to cold places, but that may not be enough when actually living in a cold place 😆 So let’s see how I go with my existing winter wardrobe when it arrives on Wednesday. I get to wear my scarves and boots again, which will be fantastic. I’m definitely looking forward to that! 😊

We ordered home delivery again tonight. The guy who delivered it was so quick, he was downstairs before I could even get down in the lift. I had to check where the restaurant was, as this guy was so mega-fast: it was 170m from the serviced apartment. OMG. The delivery guy must think I’m the laziest person in the world ðŸ˜ē And here I was thinking my previous order from 400m down the road was close ðŸĪŠ Crazy stuff, man.

But I think even though things are so mega close, it actually takes longer than you think it will to get anywhere because of the narrow streets and the large population. 200m in SG would’ve been nothing (you just die from the heat and humidity 😂), but here, you have to navigate through throngs of people coming from all directions, on a street that is on a steep incline, which barely caters for two people walking side by side – with the occasional construction going on part of the way ðŸ˜ģ And then add umbrellas to the mix on a wet day ☔ïļ So I just have to remember that when I think to myself “oh it’s only 200m down the road, it’ll take less than 5min to walk there”. It will just as likely take twice as long as that! 😂

Operation Sydney: all systems go

I went to IKEA again to pick up some more bits and bobs. I think we’ll be regular customers for the next few weeks, as we slowly figure out what we need in our new home. Oh, and also at Muji. If you’re avid fans of the two brands, then you’ll feel right at home in our new apartment! The whole place will probably look like it’s come straight out of their catalogue. We’re gonna be unintentional brand ambassadors – we should get commission! 😂

I tracked Kitty’s flight in to HK this afternoon. We got updates from both SG and HK, first when she was taken to Changi Airport, and then when she landed in HK and cleared customs. They also sent through photos, and although she looked scared – understandably so, as the past week must’ve been very traumatic for her – she was alert, and looked ok. I was so keen to see her again, yet also rather stressed about Operation Sydney being ramped up into full operation mode 😂

It was all systems go from when we picked her up from the pet transportation guys out on the street to when we literally let the cat out of the bag once we were home 😂 I worried for days over nothing. Security doesn’t scrutinise what you’re carrying in and out of the building, and she makes no noise whatsoever when she’s out of the house, so we got her up to the apartment no issues. There was someone else in the lift with us, though, and I was scared that she’d miaow in the lift on the way up, since she has just been reunited with us after four days, and might be so relieved to hear us once again. But she didn’t *phewww* and the other guy happily got off at his floor being none the wiser 😅

I spent the rest of the evening with her, just trying to relax her a bit, after what was surely a very stressful flight. Adults get stressed about flights, so I can’t imagine how she felt today. And her customs and immigration process is more complicated than us hoomans 😔 Her journey started at 9am this morning, and only finished almost twelve hours later. And that’s only SG to HK, a four-hour flight difference. Imagine poor pets who have to travel all around the world! Plus she hasn’t been staying with us for the past week, so she also hasn’t been happy being holed up at the vet that entire time.

She spent a lot of the evening wandering around the apartment, familiarising herself with her new surrounds. I tried showing her where her food and water is, as well as her litter tray, so hopefully she can remember – especially her litter tray! 😂 After about two hours, she seemed to finally calm down and sit next to me, so hopefully she can get some sleep tonight. As much as I wanted to sleep in the apartment with her overnight, I also didn’t really want to sleep on the floor on a makeshift bed using whatever clothes we have in our suitcases. I lay with her on the floor for a while tonight, and my back was a little sore just from that! So I don’t really want to find out what a whole night of sleeping on the floor will feel like in the morning!

So I just stayed in the apartment for as long as I could, trying to make her feel as comfortable as possible in her new home, and then made my way back to the serviced apartment to take a shower and get some sleep. I’ll head back again as early as I can tomorrow and spend the day with her, continuing to clean the apartment while I’m there. I just hope she doesn’t scratch at the door all night, bothering the neighbours – and then getting us in trouble! She actually started doing that just as we were about to leave! 😔 Or am I once again overthinking things and all she does is just sleep when we’re not around?? We should install a cat cam 🐈ðŸ“đ

The apartment still doesn’t feel like home, since our furniture is still yet to arrive, and so we can’t really just “hang out” there at the moment. All I’ve really been doing in the apartment is clean! 😂 It’ll be one week tomorrow from when the removalists came to our apartment in SG, and they said it should take roughly ten days for our furniture to arrive in HK. So that means Sunday, and then perhaps a few days of admin/processing, before they get the go-ahead to deliver to the apartment. So maybe Wednesday/Thursday next week? I’ll just assume one more week to wait / one more week to clean the apartment, and then maybe it can start feeling like our home ðŸĪž