It’s been about a week since I returned from Hong Kong and is probably about time I posted some holiday snaps.
Unfortunately at least half of the photos are actually on my mother’s camera so I won’t be able to post them now. I’ll be visiting her in a couple of weeks, though, so I may update this post then with some more pics.
I was so excited about the holiday that I couldn’t sleep well for the last three nights before we left! On top of that our departure flight was so early that we had to be at the airport at 5am.
Even though I was ridiculously tired I think you can tell from the photo that I’m really excited. I kept trying to be calm and sensible but I couldn’t get over the fact that I was actually waiting for my very first overseas flight.
Bouquet was a lot more composed than I 😉
Getting my stamp at customs made the whole situation feel a bit more real to me.
It was at this point that I realised Bouquet already had her own Hong Kong stamp.
Our flight arrived in the late afternoon and it was early evening when we arrived at our hotel. I fell in love with the place as soon as I walked in the door. We stayed at the Langham and as soon as we walked in to that opulent foyer I literally whimpered. I’d never been to a 5 star hotel before and first impressions exceeded my expectations.
My mother and I were both pretty tired from our flight (and the lack of sleep the previous night) and we really didn’t feel up to going out so we decided to just get room service. Just something simple. A hamburger for me and a club sandwich for Mum…
The fanciest burger and sandwich I had ever seen. With coke in glass bottles served with lemon wedges. And free desserts. On a silver tray. Adorned with fresh orchids. :-O
All the food at the hotel was wonderful. As part of the package be bought we had breakfast included every day in the sumptuous Palm Court lounge area. Breakfast was a buffet of almost every type of breakfast food you could imagine…and then some! I think I had these barbeque pork buns almost every day.
My favourite part of the whole trip was simply looking around. Hong Kong was unlike anything I had experienced – the crowds, the signage, the huge buildings, the harbour views. There was so much competing for my attention that I often forgot to actually stop staring and take a photo! I did manage to take a photo of this weird window decal…
…as well as this awesome ad that really caught my eye.
Apparently this product was originally designed for horses, but is now marketed as a shampoo and conditioner for human hair as well ( and I do mean “as well”. The bottles have instuctions for both human and animal use). I was so taken by this ad that I became determined to purchase some Mane and Tail for myself. After much hunting my mother and I managed to find a bottle of the shampoo and the conditioner on our very last day. I think Bouquet approved.
In terms of general atmosphere, though, Hong Kong is definitely at it’s best at night time.
We didn’t spend the entire time in Hong Kong, though. One day of our holiday was spent on a guided bus tour of Macau. Despite my initial uncertainty about whether I would enjoy a guided tour, this actually turned out to be one of my favourite days of the entire trip! Our tour guide, Cisco, was amazing. He was informative, entertaining and very polite (he always offered his hand to tour members as we were disembarking from the bus).
Our first stop was this amazing statue. I believe it depicts some sort of sea goddess? Cisco stated that it is actually not a very good statue from a Feng Shui perspective because the lotus flower that the goddess is standing on should be open rather than closed and because she should be facing towards the sea with her back to the mountains (she is actually facing the other way)
We also drove past a lot of Casinos, including the irresistibly ostentatious Grand Lisbon, owned by Dr Ho – the wealthiest man in Macau.
We didn’t really visit any of the casino’s though, with the exception of the tour group all meeting up in the foyer of Jacki Chan casino before with left to get the ferry back to Hong Kong.
Most of our time in Macau was spent looking at architecture and statues, eating Portugese egg tarts, visiting churches and shrines and exploring the streets.
Unfortunately my camera batteries died early in the day in Macau, so I won’t be able to post any more photos until I get my mother’s camera.
If visiting Macau was one of my favourite days on my trip, visiting the Giant Buddha was my ABSOLUTE favourite day!
This was probably the hottest day we spent in Hong Kong, but that didn’t spoil my enjoyment! We look a glass-bottomed cable car up to Ngong Ping village. It was delightful…but probably not so much if you don’t like heights.
The Buddha itself was impressive, although the 250 steps or so to get up to it weren’t so fun given this was the hottest day of our entire trip!
I thought the views from the top were spectacular. Nothing anyone told me before my trip prepared me for how beautiful Hong Kong was. So many green hills and misty skies. *sigh*
We also celebrated a couple of special occasions while we were in Hong Kong. The first of these was Mothers’ Day. The funny thing about Mothers’ Day was that this was the day out of our entire stay where Mum and I spent the most money…and we didn’t even leave the hotel! We had a day full of pampering, with full-body Swedish massages and facials. We topped it all off with a traditional English High Tea at the Langham’s Palm Court Lounge. High Tea consisted of…well, tea…and a three-tiered cake tray with sandwiches and savouries at the bottom and cakes and sweets on the other two layers. About half way through the proceedings a waitress came out with freshly-baked scones (plan and fruit), cream and home-made jam. In the end we couldn’t finish everything and we had our leftovers boxed up so we could take them back to our room.
The best thing about the whole trip was that I spent it with my mother. We had tossed the idea of taking an overseas holiday together for literally 10 years and it was exciting to finally go ahead and do it. My mother and I have always had a really close relationship. Sure, we fight from time to time (mostly it comes from being too similar!) but I’ve always been able to talk to my Mum about anything – both the bad things and the good. Thanks, Mum, for being so awesome.
The other special occasion that coincided with our trip was Mum’s birthday! We celebrated this with dinner at the T’ang Court restaurant. A two Michelin-starred restaurant conveniently located in, you guesses it, the Langham hotel! Dad one himself the title of greatest husband/father ever that night by calling ahead to the hotel and buying us each some cocktails to go with our meals – A lychee martini for starters (you have to try this! It’s the perfect accompaniment for a Chinese meal) and a peach and champagne cocktail at the end of the meal.
The meal itself was magnificent. We shared four small courses, which consisted of sautéed prawns and crab roe with golden-fried pork and crab meat puffs, crispy salty chicken, roast suckling pig and baked stuffed crab shell. The service was nothing short of spectacular. The waitress took time to help us select our meals and to explain to us what everything was. When she brought the meals out she always asked if I wanted to take a photo first (she saw me taking photos when we were first seated). Even the restaurant Manager came out a few times to wish Mum Happy Birthday and see if we were enjoying our meal. At the end of the meal the restaurant staff surprised us with a small birthday cake for Mum, courtesy of the Hotel, and some sweet lotus-paste buns.
Our final day in Hong Kong we had set aside for our visit to Hong Kong Disneyland…and when we got up in the morning it was pelting down! I was pretty miffed at first, as everyone kept coming up and telling us that it would be a miserable day to visit Disneyland and we shouldn’t go. As such we headed off to what was purportedly “The Happiest Place on Earth” with me in one of the biggest grumps imaginable.
It didn’t take very long after we arrived for my mood to improve, however. In fact, I started to get excited as soon as we got on the Disney Resort train line. How could I not get excited? The train had Mickey-Mouse shaped windows and overhead straps and was full of statues of Disney characters. We had a fun-filled day at Disneyland. In the end the rain worked to our advantage because the lines were much shorter than they would normally be. We got to have photos taken with a number of characters including Chip and Dale, Mickey and Minnie, and a very dashing Prince Philip (when I walked up to him I curtseyed and he tipped his cap to me *swoon*). We also saw some neat shows and went on a number of the rides. My Mum just about killed me after I dragged her onto Space Mountain. I think the Dumbo ride was probably more the right speed for the both of us.
By the end of our visit we were both exhausted and ready to go home…but now that we’ve been back for two weeks I’m ready to go back! Time to start saving again, I guess.
Well, I already gave you a few ideas about how Bouquet may dress if she were planning for a holiday, but what about when she isn’t jet-setting about the globe? Not having to pack all of her clothing into a suitcase means Bouquet would have a lot more freedom to dress in a variety of ways, so let’s have a look at how she might use that freedom.
The foundation of any of Bouquet’s outfits would have to be, of course, a really cute hat. I also threw in the floral brooch as a “tip-of-the-hat” (heh heh) to Bouquet’s appellation. This outfit features a more muted version of her natural palette, with burnt orange, sky blue and a kind of mustard-y yellow.
Even indoors a hat can be handy. When in the kitchen, for example, hair can be tucked up into a hat, conveniently keeping it clear of food. Kitchens provide a surprising range of opportunities to accessorise your outfits with aprons, oven mitts, tea towels and even appliances coming in a range of colours and styles. Whipping up a batch of cupcakes can be the perfect excuse to play dress-ups, and Bouquet has clearly thrown herself into the task with gusto!
When evening falls Bouquet starts to feel a bit bolder and decides to show her true colours. I can just see Bouquet turning heads at a classy charity event in this eye-catcching get-up. In fact, with the bright colours, not-too-high heels and fluffy fascinator, this outfit could just as easily suit a day at the races. I know what pony I’m betting on to bring home the winner’s garland…and maybe a few more flowers, too boot!
Even when it’s time to call it a night, Bouquet couldn’t bear to be without some headwear. This stripy and pom-pom-y nightcap formed the central point of a whole “Wee-Willy-Winky” bedtime ensemble…complete with candlestick! After a short late-night read to relax Bouquet can close her eyes, satisfied with a successful day of fun and fashion and confident that a whole new day (and perhaps even a new hat) awaits her at the other side of sleep.
As for me, it’s been a long week and I’m feeling rather sleepy, myself. Goodnight, friends!
A few weeks ago I briefly introduced you to my very first pony, Bouquet. Although I dedicated a whole post to telling you about how I first received Bouquet and how she began my long-running obsession with My Little Ponies, I never actually gave her a proper profile post…so here it is!
As I mentioned in an earlier post, Bouquet is a Brush ‘n’ Grow Pony, one of those ponies with ling manes and extra-long, retractable tails.
One of my favourite things about Bouquet, however, is her colour scheme. her mane and tail feature streaks of bright yellow and almost-neon orange, with a surprise shock of ice-blue. Her plain white body allows this startling and beautiful contrast of colours to really pop.
The most enigmatic quality that Bouquet possesses is her name. In most cases a link (at times a very tenuous link) can be drawn between a pony’s name and her cutie mark. However, despite the fact that Bouquet’s name relates to flowers her cutie mark is…a floppy sun hat. I have to admit, this incongruity tickles me!
I imagine Bouquet’s personality as refined, but a little shy. Imagine a cross between Rarity and Fluttershy from Friendship is Magic. With a cutie mark like that, you just know that Bouquet would be interested in fashion, millinery and, I suspect, shopping.
I am a big fan of hats myself…but I always seem to lose them somehow. In the past week alone I have lost two of my favourite hats, which is particularly annoying as the weather is getting quite cool now and I like wearing hats to keep my ears warm. I am confused about what could have happened to one of these hats in particular, as I could swear I didn’t wear it outside of my apartment at all. If Bouquet could talk, I’m sure she’d scold me (gently) for my carelessness.
Do you have a favourite hat that you own or one that you wish you owned? I’ve always wanted to get myself a top hat…but I’m not convinced I would ever wear it.
Phew, this sure has been a busy week! My mother and I (and Bouquet, too) are off to Hong Kong in less than 36 hours and I feel like I still have so much to sort out.
Time is limited, so I just wanted to briefly share with you my approach to packing for this holiday.
I’m hoping to do a decent amount of shopping when I’m in Hong Kong, and so I wanted to have as much space in my suitcase as possible. Using the principles I explored in last week’s Fashions off the Field post I decided to pack just a few simple pieces that could be mixed and matched in a variety of ways.
It’s late Spring in Hong Kong at the moment, and apparently pretty warm and muggy (not exactly my favourite type of weather, truth be told). I started with a couple of skirts and my favourite pair of shorts. I then chose three tops, making sure that each top could be worn with two or three of the bottoms.
Much as I had the white dress as the base of the outfits in Fashions off the Field #4, here I have selected a simple black dress that has the potential to be worn in a variety of ways. I also packed my wide, tartan print belt which looks great over the black dress, as well as going pretty well with my beige skirt.
In terms of footwear, I am bringing only two pairs: my walking shoes flat, black Mary-Janes) and some dressy shoes for going out (red patent leather!)
Another important addition… and I can’t stress this enough…is bathers! Now, I’m not intending on doing any swimming when I’m in Hong Kong, but I have been caught out enough times to now live by this simple axiom: If you are going on ANY kind of holiday, always, ALWAYS pack bathers. So many times I’ve been visiting friends or family and someone has had the suggestion “Let’s go to the pool!” or “Let’s all have a spa!” and I have had to decline because I didn’t have bathers. They don’t really take up much space, so now I bite the bullet and pack them anyway…just in case.
Most important of all, don’t forget to pack plenty of clean underwear!
And that’s all for clothes! Of course I am also bringing a small bag of toiletries, a minimal amount of makeup (foundation, lip gloss and lip stain) and my carry-on luggage/handbag (which largely consists of my passport, my Kobo, by Nintendo DS, a small folding umbrella and Bouquet)
So I’m pretty much ready to go. I’m starting to get a little nervous about the trip, now. I’ll let you know all about it (and how my minimalist packing worked out!) when I return.
Well it’s time Bouquet and I start packing for our Hong Kong holiday! We’re only going to be away for 10 days and, on top of that, I’m planning on doing a little bit of clothes shopping over there. I want to save as much space in my suitcase as possible for all my intended purchases, but at the same time I want to be sure I have everything I need, so very careful thought is going to have to go into every item that I pack.
I’ve been thinking a lot about how a just a few items of clothing and accessories can be combined in different ways to create different outfits. A white dress is the foundation for each of the following looks which I have pulled together. It’s simple and neutral with a classic silhouette, which means it can be mixed and matched with a number of styles, accessorie sand colours (in this case inspired by Bouquet, of course!)
A beaded belt and cute bolero takes our familiar LWD from day to night. You’re ready to hit the town…perhaps to try out some of the local cuisine? You may have noticed the little yellow wallet that has accompanied each of these looks so far. This passport wallet has multiple compartments and a snap closure, meaning you can use it not just for your passport, but for credit cards and cash, too. Also, in the spirit of saving space in your luggage and finding multi-functional items, I bring you the “ring-that-is-also-a-pot-of-solid-perfume”. This has the added bonus of eliminating the risk of spillage that comes with packing a bottle of liquid perfume.
I have been collecting My Little Ponies on off ever since I was a little girl. I’ve been collecting them for so long, in fact, that I can’t actually remember who my first pony was. The first pony I ever remember owning, however, is Bouquet.
Bouquet was a Christmas present from my parents, though I can’t say I remember exactly what year it was. From the look of the photo I would have been about 4 or so.
Bouquet is a “Brush ‘n’ Grow” pony. These ponies had extra long manes and tails, but what made them particularly special was that their tails could be shortened by cranking their heads back and forth (which made a somewhat disturbing cracking noise) and then yanked right back out again by brushing or pulling on the tail! I am not ashamed to admit that I spent many happy hours in my youth contentedly twisting Bouquet’s head back and forth to make her tail as short as it would possibly go, pulling it straight out again with one firm jerk…and then starting all over again 🙂
On a very different note, I am currently very busy getting ready for a holiday. Next week I will be heading off to spend 10 days in Hong Kong with my mother shopping, eating and sight-seeing. I can’t tell you how excited I am! My mother and I have been talking about taking a holiday together ever since I was 16 and it is hard for me to believe that 10 years later it is finally happening. What’s more, this will be my first ever trip outside of Australia. I’m a little nervous, actually…but mostly just excited!
So why mention these two seemingly unrelated items in the one post? Well I figured that seeing this was my first overseas trip it was only right that I should take with me my first pony! You can join Bouquet and I in the lead up to our adventure as we pack our bags and get ready to fly.