Sunday, August 30, 2009
Saturday, August 29, 2009
- Sandwiches: the sandwiches are pretty much all the same - tuna, turkey, meatball marinara - except for a couple listed under "local favorites" - avocado and chicken tikka. I stuck with my traditional veggie delite, but may have to try the avocado.
- Toppings: no banana peppers, but they did have grated carrots.
- Condiments: mayo, mustard, oil & vinegar, but also sweet chili oil, chili garlic sauce, and ketchup.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
This is how it works: you pay 80 HK dollars to get in, and they provide you with a huge firepit, long metal forks, and tons of food to roast in the flames. You grab a great slimy hunk of raw meat, jam it on your fork and hold it over the fire, sweating profusely, until it’s done. We had fish balls, meatballs, pork, beef, chicken, some things I couldn’t identify and, of course, hot dogs.
They also provide veggies wrapped in foil that you throw in the pit. These veggies come to you already wrapped up, so you have no idea what they are or how long they should be on the fire – you just toss them on the coals, drink several beers, sweat, drink several more beers, remember that there were vegetables somewhere and wonder where they are, see them on the fire, attempt to pull them out of the fire using two huge forks, drop them several times, finally manage to flick one out of the fire and across the floor, get it on your plate, unwrap it and wolf.
Then the power goes out. But you just stick another fish ball on your fork and keep on cookin'.
And it's the best thing you've ever eaten.
Last night was also a triumph because Kelly and I were able to use ALL of the Cantonese phrases that we've learned so far. These are pere dzao ("beer") and Lingnam dai hok (this is how you ask the taxi driver to take you home). As you can see, we have adapted well and are now almost completely native.
Friday, August 21, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Monday, August 17, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
The party was on top of Pier 3 in the Hong Kong Harbor. The lights of the buildings are really gorgeous, and every night at 8 p.m. the skyscrapers put on a synchronized light show.
We had a few beers, then a few more. We ordered some Japanese-style barbeque. I had sirloin chunks on a skewer with that traditional Japanese dipping sauce, thousand island dressing; Kelly had samosas.
As the night wore on, things got stranger and stranger. The Filipino band played a rousing rendition of “Devil Went Down to Georgia.” Our Greek/German friend told a story about being an adolescent and being dared by a friend to visit a prostitute, but once he got to her room he saw a half-eaten cookie on her dresser and couldn’t get aroused. We requested “On The Road Again” and the band played something that approximated it. I went to introduce myself to the Norwegian language teacher, who was playing a Chinese card game at a table of guys who looked like supermodels. I walked over to their table, sat down, and promptly fell off my chair. I handed her a slip of paper with my email address, told her she could contact me there or on the floor, dusted myself off and ran.
Now I am eating the cutest pea snacks in the world and trying to recover.
Friday, August 14, 2009
In other metro news, I was standing on the train flipping through my HK guidebook when the car lurched forward. I grabbed for the pole and accidentally poked a small girl in the eye. She started to cry so I looked away really fast. Luckily her mother was distracted and didn't see what happened, and the child was too distraught to tell her. I jumped off at the next stop and ran for it.
Lunch was spicy chu-sha ramen at Ajisen Ramen - a Japanese chain that's crazy popular here. You go there, you're rushed to a table (which you share with people you don't know, who you suspect spend the entire meal snickering at your use of chopsticks, but which, since you don't understand snickering in Cantonese, you're not entirely sure about, so you can't get offended, and anyway, they have a point, because you suck at using chopsticks), your food is rushed to you, you slurp it down, and you're out the door before you know what happened. We also had Japanese style dumplings and deep-fried bean curd. All good.
We walked around a bit in Wan Chai, but it was raining like mad (monsoon season, remember), so we decided to head back to the metro. Oh, did I mention that we were in Wan Chai because we had to go to the Immigration Building to apply for our Hong Kong identity cards? Just so you know, bureaucratic buildings are the same all over - lots of going to a window, waiting for your number to be called, going to another window, lots of children crying, lots of irritating people on cell phones... Anyway, on the way to the metro station we passed a specialty food import store. We stepped in and discovered, glory of glories, a whole shelf of Old El Paso taco kits, cans of refried beans, salsa, etc. There was much rejoicing. Dinner was a beautiful affair last night.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009