Not too far of a walk from Wan Chai MTR station on Hong Kong island, you will find the Islamic Centre Canteen on the 5th floor of a muslim religious centre. People come to the Masjid Ammar and Osman Ramju Sadick Islamic Centre to pray, but also to enjoy good halal Chinese food. How can you have dim sum without pork, one might ask.
We ordered a generous variety of dim sum classics such as har gow, siu mai (w/o pork, eh), cheong faan and lo mai gai, and were able to get out of there for HKD30 (CAD4) each. Normal: the “big” (most expensive) dim sum were priced at only HKD12. I must say that it wasn’t the best dim sum I ever had in Hong Kong, but it was decent enough. It is featured in the Hong Kong tourist guide for people of muslim faith, and we noticed a number of people from Southeast Asia.
Islamic Centre Canteen. 5/F, 40 Oi Kwan Road. Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2834 8211. Business Hours: 9:00a.m.10:00p.m.
Some things, you won’t see if you only visit Lamma on the weekends, or simply wake up too late. You might not see some of the fresh meat shops, that seem to be open early in the morning, or the fish market, which is only there up until 9am (and around 4pm in the weekdays).
The Yung Shue Wan “fish market” (because it’s like two vendors in what would be a small parking space for less than two mini-trucks) is located beside the Waterfront bar, close to the small pier for fishing boats opposite the main ferry pier, in the same bay.
The morning hour of commuting is always a bit of rush for me, a normally evening person. But I also enjoy taking the time to walk to the pier, rather than jog (or sometimes sprint) to it. I come out ten minutes earlier and pay more attention to my surroundings.
Yung Shue Wan, the village near the ferry pier, and largest village of Lamma Island, is completely different depending on the times you visit it. It’s, as you can imagine, a lot like a jungle or any ecosystem, at different times of the day, with a changing fauna and flora.
At night, you will see the night-dwellers come out, enjoying drinks under a starry night. In the weekend, tourists take over Lamma, and “normal life” hides under the cover (for instance delivery trucks are forbidden in Yung Shue Wan on weekend afternoons). And in the morning, vendors that you never see at other moments of the day suddenly appear: the guy who sells DVDs, the lady who sells her freshly picked veggies, and the meat/fish merchants.
Photos prises du sky garden de Queen’s Garden, Mid-Levels, durant le party de Québec Contact, le club social québécois de Hong Kong.
This is an unfamiliar sight on a Sunday morning in Exchange Square, in Central, Hong Kong. Normally, these are prime spots for Filipina maids to take on the only day off of the week for many of them.
In Hong Kong, Central (and Victoria Park too) is known as the hang-out places for domestic helpers, who otherwise live with their employers. You can picture it as Hong Kong’s financial heart being transformed into a sort of outdoor bazaar.
The note to make is that it was barely 8AM when I took this picture this morning, which explains everything. However, you could already see a few people preparing their spots, or at least reserving theirs.
Stephen Harper arrived in China on Wednesday, December 2nd, but it’s almost as if he did not. In Hong Kong at least, only official media (the China Daily) seems to be aware that our Prime Minister is visiting China on an official foreign mission — and they weren’t even cordial about it, criticizing him for not coming earlier.
What was in the Hong Kong papers today, December 4th, which concerns with the Prime Minister of Canada (with its 1.3 million-strong Chinese minority) visiting China? In the South China Morning Post, we have an article at the bottom of page A6, the last national news page:
And flipping through Ming Pao and Sing Tao for a photo of Harper or mention of the characters “加拿大” (Canada), I found none and concluded that none of these major Hong Kong-based Chinese-language newspapers thought it was an issue as important as the two or three full pages to covering the Kam Nai-Wai saga, which saw new developments today.
In Thursday’s SCMP, the day after Harper’s stop in Beijing, there was also the puny A6 article, also taken from a press agency (despite the fact that the SCMP has a bureau in Beijing):
If we go back to the case of the China Daily, I must say that I did like most people in China and did not pick it up (it’s not a paper that people tend to read much). However, I did notice its signboard at the newsstand with the daily title, which had the word “thaw” in it if I remember well. This does contrast a lot with ecstatic treatment of Wen Jiabao’s visit to North Korea in October, or more recently, Obama’s visit to China (Obama being Obama, the news did cover page of many newspapers and fronted newscasts for most of the week he was here).
Other papers that had the choice chose not to cover Harper’s visit.
People in Hong Kong love their dogs…
But if you live on Lamma Island, you might start encountering more unsavory species, such as giant spiders (crawling through your 3rd floor window), or gravity-defying mosquitoes.
Edited 2010-02-16: Later that week when I wrote this post, I found a gecko in my sink, after letting the window open during the day…
Lining up for free stuff is definitely one of those “strange things” taken from a North American perspective. Free stuff here is never taken for granted, and a line usually naturally forms without much external force.
People are very eager to get their free stuff, and this line (for shake-in flavoured chips from Japan?) stretched for a good 30-40 metre, under the rain…
Les gens qui ont écrit l’article possèdent probablement une meilleure connaissance des relations internationales, mais ça me choque à chaque fois de devoir me taper les prénoms à la place des noms de famille. En chinois, LE NOM DE FAMILLE S’ÉCRIT DEVANT LE PRÉNOM. Pis c’est pas si dûr de se rappeler la règle que le nom de famille est composé d’un seul caractère, et donc d’une syllabe.
Voilà qui est dit.
(In fact, it’s important to note that electricity generated by the coal power plant is used to power most of Hong Kong Island…)
The Beer Bay, Discovery Bay Pier
Si ça se trouve que vous attendez un traversier pour rentrer sur votre île, la meilleure façon de tuer le temps, c’est de vous prendre une pinte de bière importée du Beer Bay. Le Beer Bay est un établissement légendaire avec ses deux adresses situées l’une à côté de l’autre à Central Piers, les quais pour la plupart des îles et ports en pourtour de l’île de Hong Kong. Ces destinations étant des lieux de résidence privilégiés d’expatriés occidentaux, le Beer Bay est en effet majoritairement fréquenté par ceux-ci.
Beer Bay, Lamma Island Pier
The Beer Bay importe donc une bonne liste de bières, incluant beaucoup de noms obscurs d’Angleterre, comme la Doom Bar, une douce ale fruitée, en fût (20HKD la pinte – 3CAD) ou la Green Goblin, un cidre fermenté dans des tonneaux en chêne brassé par Wychwood (40HKD la grosse bouteille de 600 mL – 6CAD). Les mardis soirs, la Doom Bar et les autres bières en fût (c’était la Heineken et la Hoegaarden l’autre soir) sont 15HKD (2.25CAD!) la pinte.
Comme en font foi les photos ci-dessus, le Beer Bay n’est ni un bar, ni un dépanneur, en fait. Puisque c’est une pratique acceptée de boire en public ici à Hong Kong (de plus qu’il n’y a pas de lois contre cet usage comme en Amérique du Nord), les escaliers à côté du Beer Bay se transforment en terrasse extérieure lors du Happy Hour. D’ailleurs un dépanneur 7-Eleven dans un quartier de bars, on appelle ça un Club Seven ici. 😛