Our first trip to Discovery Bay

We went to Discovery Bay today. It reminds me of an ocean-front suburb, like Manly or the Northern Beaches in Sydney, and a bit like Sentosa too, in SG. It’s very idyllic, and especially so today because the weather was really nice. It didn’t have the whole hustle and bustle feel of what you would expect when you think of typical HK.

The high-rise apartment blocks aren’t here, and there is a ton of space with very few people. Again, not your typical HK!

Apparently Discovery Bay is known as DB, and some people say that stands for “Dogs and Babies” – ie it’s a very family-friendly area. It’s so true, I saw a ton of dogs and kids everywhere ๐Ÿ˜†

We also saw a ton of golf carts ๐Ÿคจ Apparently DB residents get around on these things! I’m not sure if they’re supplied by the apartment buildings for the residents to use, or if they’re privately owned by the residents themselves, but either way, I thought that was a pretty cool way to get around the area! ๐Ÿ˜Š

So if I feel like going somewhere to get away from the craziness that is HK, I think I’ll consider going back there. It’s pretty easy to get to: we just caught a ferry from pier 3 at Central Ferry Pier, and the ferry takes you all the way to Discovery Bay in about 30 minutes.

It’s quite expensive (HK$45+ on way, I believe, which is something like A$8+ or US$6+), especially when you’re used to paying around HK$6 when using public transport. But for the odd visit, it’s not too bad. Plus they’ve got some offer where if you spend HK$120 or more on dining at specific restaurants in DB, your return ferry trip is free. You just have to show your receipt to the service counter near the ferry pier and give them your octopus card, and you’re good to go ๐Ÿ‘

Maybe next time we go, we can do one of the hiking trails there ๐Ÿฅพ It’s starting to get cooler now, so it’s the perfect time to start going hiking around the city! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Rugby World Cup

We went to a pub in Central today to watch the Australia vs Wales match in the Rugby World Cup. It was a much better game compared to yesterday’s AFL grand final, but Australia still lost ๐Ÿ˜”

It was a great atmosphere, though. It’s nice being in a city with enough expats where pubs will draw enough of a crowd to keep them in business ๐Ÿ‘ I wouldn’t mind heading down to a pub during the next few weekends to watch some games. I’m not a big drinker by any stretch of the imagination, but I do like pub food ๐Ÿ˜‹ I haven’t really eaten much pub food here, and even less during our time in SG, as I like to try all the different local food that is available in abundance, making the most of our time in whatever city that we’re in. But having said that, I’d be happy to have pub food a bit more regularly over the next few weeks! ๐Ÿ˜† It’s not the healthiest food, but it’ll only be once a week for a few weeks while the Rugby World Cup is on ๐Ÿ˜Š I’ll just have to make more of a conscious effort to work out as well ๐Ÿ’ช

And I did make it to the gym afterwards today, so it’s all good ๐Ÿ˜Š And seeing this ripped woman at the pub today with the nicest arms gave me more incentive to go too ๐Ÿ˜†

Kitty did not have a good day today

N flew to SG today. He and a mate are going to go and watch the F1 over the next few days. The drawcard is really the Red Hot Chili Peppers, but the races are pretty fun to watch too ๐Ÿ˜Š I’m not a Chili Peppers fan, so I decided not to go this year and just let the boys have a long weekend away.

It was a good thing that I didn’t go too, because Kitty did not have a good day today. She threw up and was losing her balance, and then also peed in the corner in the bedroom, which she’s never done before. The losing balance and the peeing in the wrong spot just wasn’t right, so I called the vet to see if I could get an appointment today. Luckily they could accommodate me, and I made my way over soon after I made the call.

Kitty was being her usual feisty self when we got there, so I felt a bit like I was crying wolf! It was as if there was nothing wrong with her, and she was making a point to prove it to the vet herself then and there. The vet couldn’t find anything physically wrong with her, and suggested that we do a blood test to rule out a few other things as well. But that involves sedating Little Miss, since she won’t let anyone get even near her, let alone draw blood.

The vet was hesitant to sedate her so late in the afternoon, in case there are complications with her waking up, and the clinic won’t be open in the evening to help with any issues. But I said to go ahead anyway, because I don’t want to have to put her through the stress again tomorrow of heading back to the vet. Plus she’s so strong anyway, chances are she’ll be ok.

And she was. The vet said she might be groggy for a while when we get home, but she was up and alert before we’d even left the clinic! Well that was an unnecessary stress on me! ๐Ÿ˜‚

Her test results weren’t too different from her last test in January, so that was promising. They have to do a few more tests in the next few days, and they’ll call me with the results, but in the meantime, there’s not much else I can do but monitor her.

And so far, she’s doing better than I expected her to be! When I thought she was losing her balance and was unsteady on her feet, she still managed to jump into – and out of – the bathtub with no issues! ๐Ÿ˜ฒ

She’s also started to eat again. Not with the same gusto as she usually does, but it seems like her appetite is slowly coming back. She always manages to surprise me, this little one ๐Ÿ˜Š

I was so emotionally exhausted when we got back from the vet that I fell asleep on the couch, and never got to the gym tonight. Hopefully tomorrow she’ll show signs of further improvement, and maybe I can head out then ๐Ÿ’ช

Learning and more learning

I’m enjoying the library here in HK more than I thought I would. I didn’t expect them to have such a good range of English books – non-fiction books, in particular, especially finance books. They don’t have many English fiction books, which is disappointing, so I stick to non-fiction books when I’m there. And of course they have a ton of Chinese books in the children’s section for me to work my way through. So it’s unexpectedly been quite a good resource for me ๐Ÿ˜Š

But unfortunately, they are still all paper books. What I liked about the library in SG was that it was the other way around: they had a lot more e-books, which I prefer. As a foreigner, I had to pay an annual fee to join the SG library, but it was totally worth it, given the extensive range of e-books that they had.

I managed to make it to the gym tonight, after having spent what felt like a bajillion hours watching YouTube. I usually watch YouTube for educational purposes, watching “learn Chinese” type videos or clips in Chinese aimed at native speakers, or watching things like TED talks. But today I just watched it for pure entertainment. That site is such a time sucker, I tell you! ๐Ÿ˜‚ You really have to watch your YouTube watching, otherwise, before you know it, the entire evening is gone! ๐Ÿ˜ฒ

And then when I got back from the gym? I watched another episode of Ode to Joy, my current Chinese drama. Oh, remember my BHAG from yesterday? Well I finished writing up the first five minutes! ๐Ÿ‘ I am so proud of myself ๐Ÿ˜Š

A portion of the dialogue from Ode to Joy (S1E12)

I’m going to continue doing this for the scenes that I liked (and in this episode, there are plenty!), so hopefully I’ll pick up some decent words and phrases along the way ๐Ÿค“ I’ll have to show my teacher tomorrow. She’ll probably think I’m a total nutcase! ๐Ÿ˜‚

Together, apart, and then back together again

We did a bit of shopping today, and the shops now have their winter gear out on sale. Greeeat… My favourite season will soon be coming to an end ๐Ÿ˜” So I focussed on stocking up on cold weather gear, as I felt like I was severely lacking on this front last winter. But we did just arrive from SINGAPORE, the place with an endless summer. So my wardrobe was definitely more tropical more than anything else when we first arrived in this city. I had to quickly stock up on a few winter items when we finally settled in ๐Ÿ˜†

N then headed back to the office again to do some more work ๐Ÿ˜” And so I decided to continue with my TEFL course, and prepare yet another lesson plan! They’re quite time consuming for me to do, firstly because I don’t really know what I’m doing, so I constantly have to refer to my notes; and secondly, I’m not very creative, so I’m constantly racking my brain trying to come up with fun and interesting things to do in class! But it’s a new skill, so I have to be patient with myself ๐Ÿ˜Š So I probably spent twice as long preparing this lesson plan as it would take me to teach the damn lesson! ๐Ÿ˜‚ I can’t wait until I get this skill under my belt!

And then we headed down to the gym once N got back from the office. I did another round of Jive kicks ๐Ÿฆต They are still an absolute killer. I don’t know how many rounds of Jive I have to do until this gets easier, coz at the moment, they’re still torture! ๐Ÿ˜–

To give you a bit of an idea of what it is that I’m doing, check out the first five seconds of this video on YouTube. He’s doing it mega fast, and doing a fancy double kick – not to mention dancing really nicely as well! – but hopefully you get the gist. Now imagine doing that for an entire 3.5-minute song, and you get the self-inflicted torture that I’m putting myself through. And I’m certainly not looking as fresh and excited as he does in the video! ๐Ÿ˜‚ So now my legs feel really heavy, and my whole body is sore from the whole session at the gym. I guess looking at it positively, you could say that I had a very successful session today! ๐Ÿ˜œ

Asia

I felt like going out for dinner tonight, so we went to Old Town Restaurant, a Singaporean restaurant in Central that I recently found. Although not quite at SG hawker centre prices (what is?!? ๐Ÿ˜†), the food is still good and so I keep going there whenever I have a hankering for Singaporean or Malaysian food. I’m sure I’ll start feeling nostalgic about yum cha too whenever we leave this city!

And then I started thinking about what we could do over Christmas and New Year this year. I’m thinking of doing a few short trips around Japan, Taiwan, Korea and/or China. Since we are now living in North Asia, I figured it’d be good to make the most of our location by exploring this part of Asia more. It’s actually my preferred part of Asia, so living here now is absolutely perfect ๐Ÿ‘Œ Now I just have to plan! ๐Ÿค“

Keen and lazy

I learnt all about a particular grammatical structure in Chinese today (the “ๆŠŠโ€ bวŽ structure) that has been bothering me for aaaages. It’s one of those things that doesn’t translate well (at all?!) into English, so I never really understood how to use it correctly. I understand it a little better now, but I’m sure I’ll come across all sorts of scenarios in real life when I’ll be unsure whether or not I can – or should – use it. More exposure, I suppose. That’s almost always what it’s about! ๐Ÿ˜†

I was feeling particularly lazy today, so I didn’t make it to the gym ๐Ÿ˜” And to make matters worse, I decided to order in – from a restaurant that is a mere 350m down the road! ๐Ÿ˜ฒ How lazy is that?!? We ordered home delivery in SG too, but the restaurants were always much farther away than 350m! Luckily I don’t make a habit of this; apparently our last home delivery order was five months ago ๐Ÿ‘ So I can live with myself at this level of laziness ๐Ÿ˜‚

We started watching Titans again tonight. Apparently we’d seen the first two episodes before, but luckily we started from episode one again, as I had obviously forgotten most of this episode! ๐Ÿ™„ It’s darker than The Umbrella Academy, so it freaks me out a little, but it’s pretty good so far ๐Ÿ‘