Sunday, April 29, 2007

Hong Kong and Macao

Well, this is it. Our final vacation before the baby comes. The little tyke is due in June and I have a feeling our jet-setting days are going to be on hold for a little while. With that in mind, we decided to head on a fast 5 day trip to...


We stayed on Hong Kong island at a fairly reasonable hotel (about $120 US per night). It was easy to get around and I was enamored with the "Tram" system (electric steet cars). You can see in the pic below that the streets are well maintained and that, at least on the main strips, order is followed (sometimes in short supply in Asia).

You can also take the very cool (and very cheap) Star Ferry between HK Island and Kowloon. It gives a real feeling of what things would have been like before all the metro tunnels.

People talk a lot about how great HK is for shopping. Honestly, before I went, I really didn't believe them. I thought that it was probably only good for people who love the high-end brand-name type of stuff. Boy was I wrong. HK is not a perfect city, but the two things it does have going for it are shopping and food. We ended up getting all our baby needs (crib, high chair, clothes, etc..) for around $200. It would have been more than double that in Korea!

Ok, so now on to the food. I absolutely loved it there! Sure, a lot of restaurants don't have english on the menu, but when the food is this good and cheap, who needs english? I loved the smells and taste of the HK Chinese food. It's much different than the stuff in the North - not near as greasy.

One thing that kind of threw me was... what I found in a local supermarket. Whenever we go oveseas, Joo and I always love to check out the markets and bring home cool suaces and such. This time though, something jumped up at me.

Frogs! That's right, these little toady fellows were up for sale. So, what did I do?? ...

Yup, you guessed it, I ate 'em!

And what HK trip would be complete without going up to "the peak" and looking out over the city... actually, it got cloudy, so instead I hung with my main man Bruce.


We took a day trip over to Macao. It's only an hour away by speed boat so I figured I'd go and see what all the fuss was about.

"North Korean money" - "The new Las Vegas" - "amazing architecture"

They were only right on the last one.

Joo and I eneded up taking a city bus to Santos Square and hiking up to some old church (or what was left of it). Quite a cool building and some nice Portuguese influences. As well, right beside the church was an old fort. I always love seeing old forts and wondering how they might have held off an invasion.

This fort though looks like it is taking aim at modernization.

The Good-
-shopping in HK and Macao for anything other than a car
-the food on both islands
-cheap McDonald's breakfasts
The Bad
-Ocean Park (nothing close to Sea World)
-Comparing Macao to Las Vegas (not near as interesting)
-the weather might make things sticky

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Why I don't live in Canada

Ok, it's been more than 5 years since I've lived in Canada, and sure I miss some people and the great selection of potato chips, but for the most part I am very happy with my move.

Most people in Canada cannot realy understand it. When I talk to them about how life in the rest of the world is fine, and that not everyone wants to move to Canada, I get blank stares. So many people in Canada are taught from an early age that Canada is the best (and most humble) nation on the planet. That everyone is just dying to get in.

well... I'm not. And here's why:

The average Canadian family earned $63,001 in 2006 and paid taxes equalling $28,311, almost 45 per cent of its income, while spending 35.6 per cent of its income on food, clothing and housing.

Holy fudge! And what is more interesting is this:

Since 1961, the total tax bill for the average Canadian family has
increased 1,590 per cent, according to the think-tank. Meanwhile, the cost of
housing has increased 1,019 per cent, the cost of food 487 per cent and the cost
of clothing 447 per cent, the Fraser Institute said.

“Over the past 45 years, taxes have become the single largest expenditure
in an average Canadian family’s budget, with the total tax bill for a typical
family increasing by 1,590 per cent since 1961,” Veldhuis said

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Our little.... well, not a monster.

Some of these scans really scare me. Sure, I know that they are designed to help us figure out if the baby has 10 fingers and 10 toes, but man, have you seen these things?

The 3D Ultra-Sound peels back flesh and bone like it's butter. Sure sometimes it looks pretty cool to see your baby moving around, but one cm too deep and you're looking into or through the baby.

Anyway, I thought it was about time to post up another pic...

Lie- Joo was telling me it's time to post up another picture.

Our baby - 29 weeks in.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

From movies to...

Well, if you've been reading this blog for awhile, you might remember me being in a couple of movies. I've been what is called an 'image character' in 4 of them so far (basically an extra with some lines). The pay is decent and I get to meet some interesting characters, so when the opportunity arrives (and my schedule is clear) I try to do them.

This is a little different though. I went for a comercial shoot a month or so back and it's running on TV. It's nothing major, but I thought you might want to look at it.

You can check it out HERE.

(Oh, and if anyone knows how to download from a video like that, post it here k)