Monday, October 31, 2011

polly put the kettle on

Aren't handwoven books intriguing?

They certainly intrigue me.. 

I came across Angelicquirk in one of the markets and just totally fell in love with her handmade books alongside her other cutesy crafts. Needless to say I signed up at her first bookbinding workshop. Miss VinVin of Angelicquirk has turned from fellow vendor to crafting friend. She's as lovely as her work.

Us students were welcomed into the Angelicquirk studio that Saturday morning where everyone was given their individual pack of papers and cloth (for the covers) along with our very own SAW! It was such a breezy feeling to come together with people with the same objective: to bind a book! I didn't think I would make friends in this workshop but friend-making I did  :)

Some Saturday Night Fever stitching right there!

I love the refreshments put out. I know I know.. snacks has got nothing to do with bookbinding but the tea was yumsss...

I have to admit I struggled a wee bit with the stitching and technique (never one for thinking on a weekend morning) but the book turned out in the end! Was the last to finish though. 

Turns out the first time I tied the charm to the book I actually tied it the wrong way around! Also I accidentally cut my cloth a tad too short that it started fraying at the ends so I had to purchase book corners (available at Evelin's) to keep 'em from falling apart!

Not the nicest work but cutes nonetheless  :)

You can visit Angelicquirk's website here to get more information or dates on Kettle or Coptic Stitching classes. I've yet to go for a Coptic class.. perhaps I'll see you there!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

hong the kong

This was yonkers ago-lah. Malas to cakap panjang-panjang so I'll just let the images (and captions) do the talking eh... will definitely try my awful best to include venue info.

Last year Guy and I attended a good friend's wedding in Hong Kong. Post wedding and housing mortgage we were skint as hell and were confined to ikat perut along with a meagre lifestyle to gather money for this trip. I was told HK to be an expensive city and so it was. I was so busy working nights that I only started looking the city up the night prior to the travel!

I love the journey into the city. The magnificent view was a nice touch to the welcome  :)

We took the Airport Express Travel Pass which allows us to travel (from the airport) into the  city and within the city for 3 days (inclusive of a returnable HK$50).

First thing we did upon check-in was go to the legendary Yung Kee! Heard the roasted goose there is to-die-for.

It's a pretty high-end restaurant and everyone keeps heading upstairs. We were seated downstairs. Felt abit left out like we were at the boring floor of the party.

 Unfortunately their siew ngor was out of stock so we settled for char siew and some dim sum. Their goose liver sausage pau is yums but their century egg appetizer is LEGENDARY! 

Yung Kee Restaurant
32 - 40 Wellington Street
Central, Hong Kong

Tel: +852 - 2522 1264

We walked about. I spent forever in H&M. H&M... when're you coming to KL-lah?? I finally got the bride on the phone and she asked us to join her and the crew for the pre-wedding dinner at a hot pot place.

Met some of the wedding guests there. All of us were fencing elbows in the VIP room. I heard it's notoriously difficult to get a table here without reservation. 

The sashimi is crazy fresh and yums as hells. Most of them didn't care for raw seafood but I relished every slurp! 

Hongkee likes satay soup in their hot pot. And curiously  the entire meal washed down so well with Asahi beer. I never really liked Asahi till then. The dinner costed us HK$500 per pax (OMG!!) and that really drained out our travel fund! Goodness gracious... note to self: always check for price range before chugging fish balls down my throat.  

Him Kee Hot Pot
1/F, 2/F Workingfield Commercial Building
408-412 Jaffe Road
Wanchai, Hong Kong

Tel: + 852 - 2838 6116

The next morning we rose early for a zen affair. We had breakfast at Yuen Kee restaurant where the price is averagely reasonable and the crowd is buzzing!

Love their pork chop burger. Amazeballs!

Guy had a more traditional breakkie of porridge and  chee cheong fun.

Yuen Kee Restaurant
18 Granville Road
Shop B G/F Kiu Yip Building
Tsim Sha Tsui
Hong Kong

Tel : +852 2721 7881

We used our coupon that came with the Travel Pass to get a discount off the Ngong Ping 360 cable car. You get off at Tung Chung station and take a l..o..n..g walk to the cable car terminal. Be there by 9 am or risk yourself a 2-hour queue!

We were deciding between the regular cabin or the crystal one (with an additional charge of course) and decided we'd save that $ for lunch. A lil' agility is needed to alight the cabin as it is still moving while you try to jump in. Also we can't sit side-by-side as we need to balance out the weight which sucks abit if you go in a party of two. Totally ruined our plans to make out in the sky!

 cable car rides!

The view was spectacular. The ride was serene albeit slightly chilly. Cable car is coolest mode of transport ever!

I've always wanted to visit Lantau Island to see the Giant Buddha especially after Infernal Affairs and gazillion other HK samseng movies! Every Godfather in TVB has made at least one prayer here. Serious.

This is a wishing tree but since both of us could not decipher the  instructions,  we could not work out how to make a wish on this tree.

They definitely got me fooled. The walk towards the Giant Buddha is damn long-lah. You've got to wade through the Cultural Village and pass this zen garden only to find yourself still a stone's throw away from the foot of the Giant Buddha stairs. Though tiring and seemingly endless, I enjoyed the walk in the crisp morning air taking in the serenity in search of clarity yada yada.

The big guy says hi!

Organic lavatory y'all! I decided to hold it in and look for a loo which has a ceramic bowl at least..

We returned to Nathan Road after Lantau Island in search of food prior to the evening wedding. I didn't want another restaurant meal and so we searched hard for a simpler place to dine. Of course I just HAD to be distracted by shopping in some funny basement mall (HK is filled with basement malls!) when we stumbled upon Lan Fong Yuen (already in my list for a must-visit.. score!!) famous for their pantyhose tea.

The place is a freaking Alan Tam altar! The guy who owns the place must be some kinda die-hard-fan 'cos Alan is, like, everywhere! On the walls, on the menu, up front.. you get the idea. There's a giant picture of Alan eating a LFY bun with a thumbs-up sign.. guess he must be real chuffed to be eating in a cafe dedicated to his music career.

Lan Fong Yuen
2 Gage Street
Central, Hong Kong

Tel: +852 2544 3895

(If my memory did NOT fail me, based on the basement Milan Station this should be..)

Chungking Mansion
36 - 44 Nathan Rd
Tsim Sha Tsui
Hong Kong

As per bride's request I will not be featuring her wedding but here's a couple of sneak peeks!

It's a really lovely chapel, non?

Miss VeiraVeira and moi come together from opposite sides of the globe to celebrate a union of a couple we've known more than a decade(!!).
Hairband: Forever 21
Boots: Zara

Since I've never attended a bouquet-throwing wedding when I was single and I got married before the rest of mates did, I figured I would never ever be in the bouquet-anticipating elbow-grinding crowd. Turns out I got my belated turn after all! Guy made it clear that I was NOT to catch the bouquet  :P

We adjourned to the hotel for the dinner reception where Miss VeiraVeira and Miss PauPau played Lady Gaga with my headpiece  :D 

As I went up to check on the bride I found the gentlemen soaking in the tub  :D  Lovesss! 

Super famous MTR stations!

So about the accomodation. Little did we know that when we came across what happened to be a real steal on a HK accomodation called USA Hostel (I mean it's, like, 50 freakin' ringgit per pax per night) it turned out be quite the mistake. Seriously. Firstly it's located in this super dodgy building called Mirador Mansion which also plays house to like a hundred thousand other 'guesthouses', 'motels', 'hostels' and get this 'hotels'! Secondly there are only a certain set of lifts that go your floor. There's usually a lift conductor to usher you into your respective lifts. Just make sure you get the right queue 'cos Guy and I were queuing forever at a line, thinking it was the line that valids you to all lifts, only to find that we were wrong and had to get to the back of the other line.Ya ampun! Then the entrances get tricky post 8pm.. only certain ones are left open and you ought to know this so as not to panic thinking you can't get into the building at night. Also you've gotta show your passport and sign in with the guard-lah. So mah fan man. there's no reception just some maid that will lead you to your room and a tauke-so that will collect your deposit. And there's no room service or in house cafe so if you're hungry in the middle of the night you can proceed to enjoy the symphony of your stomach grumbling. Noone's gonna help you there. I did bring a cup noodle but the kettle looked super YUCKS. I should have tahpau-ed some McDonald's or something in case of emergency.

Flat C2, 13/F 
Mirador Mansion
Tsim Sha Tsui
Hong Kong

Tel: +852 2311 2520

Call us unadventurous but we had dinner in Yuen Kee AGAIN! Can't help it-lah... the food is GOOD and the price is pretty REASONABLE. I  HK sweet and sour pork!!

We only managed one market this time around and I highly recommend the Ladies Market. It's jam packed with knick-knacks, toys, accessories and clothes.

Aren't you in love with these?? Turns out pixel beads have existed forever-lah... I was living under the coconut craft shell. Guy bought me a set to play with but I haven't gotten to doing anything with it yet... 

Regret not getting the pelican thong. Heh. 

There's a small cafe by the Ladies market called Bo Dao and the food there is lovely. The only reason why we' ventured in there was because my feet was aching like MAD and the fact that I take every chance I get to drink bubble tea! Weee!!

Ladies Market
Tung Choi St
Hong Kong

1200 - 2300

We tried looking for Yuen Po St Bird Garden but got totally lost. We made do with the Goldfish market.  There were goldfishes the size of Guy's face!

Goldfish Market
Tung Choi St

1030 - 2200

This is the Hong Kong I know. All the years watching triad movies and series...  and I thought I'd be prepared for this cosmopolitan island. But I wasn't. It's crude on one side but highly refined on another. Cute and whimsical with a dash of reality. It's a gastronomic haven with culture, fashion, arts and lots of life in between. 

I wish we had this near the clinic. I'd so totally be healthy.

Don't pelt me with tomatoes but I didn't think the 'Symphony of Lights' is that big a deal. It was nice but  it wasn't as amusing as I thought it was gonna be. It's chilly so do pack a jacket. 

An ode to fashionable bakers!

We had a brief meet up before all of us were set to leave the next morning. 305 E mini reunion y'all!

Patron... yums!! One for the road ad afew more for fun..
Of everything I ever ate in HK.. this truly TOPS the list with their fluffy scrambled eggs sandwich, steamed  milk and steamed egg pudding (LOVESSSSS!!!). Australia Dairy: It's compact, it's raucous and it's *snap-snap-snap* At first i found the waiter to be demanding bordering on rude but turns out he's just trying to make things move as efficient as possible. He was kind enough to pause as I thumbed down the menu but I pretty much just ordered what I had previously wrote in my Moleskine anyway, much to his amusement. We shared our minuscule round table with an old couple and an old man. They were fascinated that we actually knew what we wanted to order without looking at the menu despite being tourists. I was too ashamed to admit I could not read Chinese to save my life!

Australia Dairy Co
47 - 49 Parkes St
Hong Kong

Tel: +852 2730 1356

There's a embossing HK stamp by the HK history booth at their airport. If you manage to catch it take full advantage! 
Don't I make a stylish rickshaw pusher?? 
Jeggings: Uniqlo
Boots: Zara

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