11 December, 2013

Hong Kong - Days 2, 3 & 4

So clearly, I got a little behind on writing.  To be fair, I've had plenty of work to do in the meantime.  We've now completed two out of our three presentations and I'm just hours away from the last one.    We did however, manage to squeeze in a little bit of fun.  Some of these pictures will be similar to ones from last year, but I hope everyone will enjoy them again.

So first up... The Tian Tan Buddha.  Many of you may remember that I went there last year.  Well, this year was a tiny bit different.  I convinced my boss and his husband to join me and off we went.  I didn't get to ride the cable cars last year, so this time we went up to the Buddha that way.  We even paid extra for a glass bottom car.  Man, that's a long way up!

The ride itself took about 20-30 minutes.  I'm a little unsure since we were just stunned with the scenery.  Sadly, it's been a little hazy during this whole trip so the pictures aren't as perfect as I'd like.  The ride up the mountain in the cable car was just spectacular and I really recommend it.  Far below us, we could see the hiking trail that many brave souls chose instead of cable car or bus.  Not sure I'm ready to walk up a mountain.

Suddenly, you round the corner of a mountain and there is the Buddha off in the distance.  Still an amazing sight, even the second time around.

We decided to make the long climb up the stairs and here you are.  You'll forgive me if I've played with some of the images, I was trying to bring out some of the details and stumbled into some amazing combinations.  I was particularly moved by the monk making his way slowly up the stairs.  He sang almost the whole way and would stop every set of steps to kneel and pray.  We made it to the top and walked around for a while.  On our way back down, he still hadn't made it to the top.  Being a tourist, sometimes it's an honor to witness other people's faith. 

Back down the stairs and we headed over to the monastery.  Seems like the monks are making enough in donations to do a little restoration, but sadly for us, much of the amazing building I got to see last year was closed and covered in scaffolding. 

After that it was time to head back to the city and to work.

I also thought I would share the amazing view I have every day and night from my hotel room.  Conference hotels do have some perks.

Most of the rest of my time has been work related.  I do have one last thing to leave you with for today.  The China Club.  AMAZING.  It's a private restaurant where members are treated to dinner in rooms straight out of the 20s or 30s.  Complete with band and singer.  Amazing food set to the likes of Cole Porter and you have one hell of a night.  (not to mention the best Old Fashioneds I've had just about anywhere)  I'm afraid the photos don't do it justice as I was limited to my phone, but I think you get the idea.  We ate in the main dining room, but there is floor after floor of private dining rooms for as few at 4 and as many as 20+.  It will be a must visit next year I'm sure.  And last of all, the food... spectacular.

I'm sure there will be more tonight as I think we're headed to one of the night markets.  Hopefully I'll post again soon!

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