Sunday, November 14, 2010

Hong Kong Day 8

I thought that I would get the chance to sleep in after such a late night at the races, but no such luck! It was another early morning for me in Hong Kong and my parents and myself met with Grace and her parents early at a dim sum restaurant for breakfast. It wasn't really all that early in the morning, but I felt so tired. The restaurant was a nice big place and had delicious food and of course I ate way too much, as per usual.
Grace was a little late getting to breakfast since she had been up until 3am packing for her trip to Fiji. Ben couldn't make it to breakfast since he still had some last minute things to take care of.
Before we could dig in to our morning meal, Grace presented us all with some lovely gifts. It was really too much, but I certainly appreciated it. For my mother, a lovely scarf, a really stylish hat for my dad, my brother was given a really hip v-neck shirt, and I was given a lovely pair of glove/mittens. They're especially awesome. Honestly, they're the nicest gloves I've ever had. We all finished breakfast and walked Grace to the bus stop so she could catch the shuttle to the airport. We bid her farewell and safe travels, and then away she went to the airport. Before we all split up for the day, we made plans to meet with Grace's parents in the evening for dinner and then shopping at the night market on Temple Street.

With the afternoon to spare, I went out on my own to take some photos and do some shopping. The previous night, on the way home from the races, Grace told me about Lucky Plaza. According to her, it was the place where most of the locals shopped. Lots of neat little stores where I could buy video games and snacks and things. It wasn't far from the hotel and was attached to all of the other malls and plazas in that area. Once I was there, I remembered it from my last visit to Hong Kong. I spent a good amount of time wandering around and checking out all of the shops. There were a few stores selling games, but nothing really caught my interest, though I was little surprised at the amount of North American games they were selling, but maybe they were all bootlegs. While I was looking, I came across this one shop selling all kinds of clothing and fashion accessories for men. They had some really nice stuff, but I only looked since I figured it was probably expensive. After buying some snacks, I headed back to the other plazas to look around.

Attached to Lucky Plaza was Sha Tin plaza. It was a pretty nice place, but the most appealing part of it was the restaurants. From Sha Tin plaza, there was the New Town Plaza. It was the newest shopping mall in the area and definitely had the nicest shops. All I could do was look since I really didn't have a lot of money with me on this trip. Besides, I wanted to save what little I had left for picking up souvenirs at the night market. Heading back towards the hotel, I snapped some pictures of the Yata mascots. They were just cute and fun and I thought it would be good to have some pics. I ran into my brother and my parents, and we all spent the rest of the evening hanging out. We went to get some coffee at Starbucks, and then to the station to meet Grace's parents. When we got there, only her father, Kuen, was there. Though he didn't speak much English, we understood enough that we had to take the train to another stop to meet with Li after she was done work. After a transfer of trains, we all met up and headed down to Kowloon to grab some dinner.

Li and Kuen took us to this nice little place not too far from the station. It had a really cool two-floor set up and was kind of like a 50's diner. They served mostly Chinese dishes, but there were some American ones in there, too. Having had my fill of Dim Sum for the week, I opted for the pork chops with potatoes and vegetables. I was expecting the worst, but I was actually quite impressed with the food. After the meal, we headed to the night market. It was around then that I realized I had forgotten my camera back at the hotel! I was really bummed out since I was really looking for getting some night photos along Temple Street. Turns out that it was probably for the best since Temple Street, aside from being known for the awesome night market, is a haven for pick-pockets and thieves.

We walked all along the crowded street that was overflowing with people, mostly tourists. Booths lined either side of the street with merchants selling all kind of wares. Most of the things for sale were bootlegs and imitations of name-brand clothing, sunglasses, and accessories. There were also lots of tables selling souvenirs and traditional Chinese ornaments. I recall there being a lot more booths selling pirated CDs and DVDs, but I only noticed a few along the way. After haggling with some of the vendors and getting some cheap souvenirs, we caught the bus back to the hotel. Once there, I packed up all of my things and went to bed, prepared for the flight home the next day.

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