happy (belated) chinese new year!
ive been in hong kong for about a week now, and its been really good and interesting! i had to get used to the fact that everyone speaks cantonese here instead of mandarin, so basically ive been doing a lot of reading subtitles on tv and stuff... but hopefully thatll help get me ready for my written placement exam! i leave for beijing on wednesday!! very excited, but of course nervous, toooo... (only a little, i promise)!
for those of us born in 1986, i found a good hororscope for us... although only after i panicked and called my mom after id spent the morning reading a mildly un-optimistic horoscope on some site... naturally, being judy, she searched high and low to find the nicest, most positive outlook for us tigers in the year of the rat:
"the year of the earth rat is a high energy time for exuberant tigers. your social calender will be busy. it is especially fortunate for travel and expanding your horizon. romantic dreams will come true, new friends bring exceptional new adventures. there is so much going on, you have to be careful before jumping into things. review legal documents and take advise of down to earth people before investing in changes. hard work will bring lasting rewards."
sweet! i cant wait for this year :))))
chinese new year celebrations were way fun! lots of delicious food including some of my favorites i havent gotten to have in years!! everything here is made of really simple ingredients but somehow comes together and tastes so so good! although there have been a few suspect things ive seen on the menu, including frogs ovaries and pickled pig hands. i went ahead and passed on those... hopefully ill get more adventurous once ive adjusted more!!
i saw an awesome parade with all these dancers, floats, lights, and music, and even some people balancing on bicycles and stuff, which was what i was kind of expecting and glad to actually get to see haha! and last night i saw an amazing fireworks show!! i took a video, ill put it up once i get my own computer onto the internet... its pretty awesome, and in the background theres about a thousand tourists going ooohhh wahhhhhhh!!!!!!!! it was so funny :) although getting to the fireworks was not without incident. i had just made it back thorugh customs (i went to china for the day for some special shopping... the lengths we go for good deals, man) and got back to see the first firework go off on television!!! so, since i was going straight out that night, i booked it about 3/4 of a mile in a dress and high heels (heels! and running! me!) to catch the final fifteen minutes of the show!! totally worth it, though!
ive already bought about a million things for myself. its weird, some things are ridiculously cheap, like i took the bus for 3 cents, and the ferry across hong kong to kowloon for 23 cents, and bought a leather purse, hat, and two pairs of shoes for like... 45 us dollars. but then, i still managed to spend 25 us on two drinks at a bar... thats like half a pair of shoes in my mind. getting used to the exchange rate is funny. i took a cab the other night and it was like 79 rmb, and i was like SAY WHAT. but then i realized thats like 10 bucks. so okay.
ps. bubble tea for less than a dollar here (6 rmb), but starbux is still like 4+ dollars (36 rmb)! dont worry, i didnt get starbux in hong kong ;)
so, this is a really long post, so i think ill go now, but i hope youre all doing well and i cant wait to hear from you!!