Helping out the Hong Kong economy

Today our wonderful guide and host, Molly, took us out and about again to show us more of the older parts of Hong Kong. We visited  a local temple with more incense than you can imagine…

Each of the round coils is a different piece of incense. It was quite aromatic.

and then went to a jade area known locally as…

Here was how they listed the jade market on the subway sign.

It was a bit bizarre with an “i”.  There was booth after booth of different jewelry and nick-nacks and paddy-whacks.  Here’s a shot of one of the booths…

There were a LOT of booths that looked very similar.

After the jade market, we headed to Mong Kok (a.k.a. Shanghai Street) that specializes in kitchen goods.  Kathleen and I agreed that it would have been difficult to pull Kathleen’s sister Anne Marie away from that area.  Right before we hit that area, we took the kids for a fuel injection at a McDonalds.  They (and I) were weary from our rigorous day at Disney yesterday and needed some energy food.  Our dining options were slim since we were in the city area.  We were pretty proud of how well the girls have handled shopping and touring public sites, and we’ve realized that a small injection of “home” seems to help the girls push on through a bit more of things they aren’t familiar with.

Re-energized, we went to Sham Shui Po and visited some shops to stock up for some crafts.  The first shop was a ribbon store that had more ribbon than I’ve ever seen…

And there was MORE ribbon inside!

From there we headed to a variety of bead stores.  If I had a dime for every bead I saw…

I found myself about 40 feet inside of this man jail. The aisles were insanely narrow and my escape was blocked by numerous women who wanted nothing more than to slowly look through the 1,448 bins of different beads. The only saving grace was the air conditioning that had lured me in.

Once most of us had reached our physical limit for shopping fun, we reversed our path and headed back toward home.  Back on the train, Anna caught this interesting shot…

Anna has mastered the Chinese “squat” (no…not the one that involves no toilet). This is the one where you stand flat-footed and pretty much sit just above the ground without touching the ground. It’s sort of like a catcher in baseball, but flat-footed. I’m not nearly limber enough to pull that move off. Anyway, while in that position on the train, she took this picture.

Once we had everyone home, a few of us headed to Stanley Market nearby the Saunder’s home (5 minutes) for some additional shopping.  It’s sort of like an art fair with booths that also have clothing and shoes and just about any other odd item you can imagine.  Two stores tried to talk me into buying a remote control car that could go up and down a wall and even worked on the ceiling.  While I thought this was brilliant, I had visions on car marks on our walls and the parent side of my brain won out…

Kathleen, Megan and I found a number of items we couldn’t live without. I last visited this market 8 years ago and while it has changed, it still has some of the same charm that I so enjoyed the first time. There were a few more “stores” and a few less “stalls filled with stuff”.

Our day ended with a yummy Mexican dinner featuring cheese quesadillas for the kids and rice and bean enchiladas for the parents.  Dave made homemade salsa (there aren’t many good options for salsa here and his recipe was very good — we’re excited to try it back home once he has fresh ingredients!).

After dinner we taught the Saunders Anomia, a fun card game where you have to think quick.  They picked it up right away.

At bedtime for the kids, I caught this image…

Mia and Lydia do a little reading before bed. Lydia is a little camera-shy and my camera gives off a little “beep” before taking the picture, so she was cued to cover her face!

Once the kids were asleep, the rest of us watched the pilot and first episodes of Modern Family and then it was our bed time, too.  I know it sounds odd, but being on vacation (especially so far from home) takes a lot of energy.  Sleeping at night never seems to be an issue for any of us (thankfully!).

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