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Author Topic: NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China  (Read 1936 times)

DragonSpeed

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NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China
« on: January 20, 2006, 11:10:26 AM »

Things I learned while touring Hong Kong/China
 

Things I learned during my 3 weeks in Hong Kong and China (in no particular order)

  • Chinese people are very gracious hosts
  • Hong Kong residents must be buying a new cell phone about every other week from the volume of business in Mong Kok area
  • Wrist watches - knock offs, are so common that people must own about 4 or 5 each.
  • Always try everything that is served to you.  You might like it.  (Note - the roaches...not so much)
  • Always try to fight for the bill, but let the host win.
  • Public transit, if done right, can be pretty painless.
  • Not all taxi cab drivers are East Indian.
  • While traffic in Hong Kong is scary, there are some unwritten rules that keep everyone alive
  • Traffic in Hong Kong is sane in comparison to Guangzhou
  • Bargaining is an intricate part of buying in China
  • You can find a street vendor who will you ANYTHING in China, if you look enough.
  • Dust and haze make for great sunset pictures.
  • Dust and haze ruin good landscape pictures, ergo it's hard to take good landscape pictures in Chinese cities.
  • Life is all about who you know, and whether you can get in contact with them when it's time.
  • Big families mean lots of dinners out when you visit.
  • 5 star hotels in China have no apparent standard which determines that they are 5 star hotels.
  • Chinese tours are cheap because they take you to a store for every attraction - Commission
  • Hong Kong people don't dance.  Try finding a good dance club.
  • In China, if you need to get rid of something: burn it.  If that doesn't work: burn it again.
  • Cash rules.  Credit is for Westerners.
  • In Hong Kong, if land is available it will have a 50+ story appartment building on it within the next 2 years.
  • 10 HKD T-shirts are a prime example of "You get what you pay for"
  • Fresh air is a different standard in HK than it is in Vancouver.
  • If you need something before 10:00 am in Hong Kong - tough :(
  • If you need something after midnight in Hong Kong - No problem :)
  • Hong Kong emergency shelters start opening when daytime highs dip to 14C
  • Hang drying clothing does no good when RH is 80%

Those, I think, cover the main aspects of what I learned in HK/China

BwiBwi

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Re: NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2006, 12:09:40 PM »

DS you are surely a fast learner. Too bad you didn't drive or you'll notice something...
If you are nice stop to let people standing by sidewalk to cross street... They will NOT do it, instead they will step back
insist that you go first.
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Steelhawk

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Re: NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2006, 07:56:20 PM »

Ya, better you pass than they risk becoming sandwich underneath your car.

DS, people in HK do dance a lot.  The regulars just dance in birthday parties in people's homes or rental halls.  I learned all my chacha & waltz, rock & what have you from birthday parties in homes and halls.  Well, the filthy rich go to the nice upper class ballroom, and the filthy middle class try the so called dance clubs where the professional susie wongs are waiting... ;D

I like the dinner bill one.  You have to make an effort to go for the bill, but pull off at the last second so the host will save face by being the generous guy.  :D
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DragonSpeed

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Re: NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2006, 10:57:50 PM »

DS, people in HK do dance a lot.  The regulars just dance in birthday parties in people's homes or rental halls.  I learned all my chacha & waltz, rock & what have you from birthday parties in homes and halls.  Well, the filthy rich go to the nice upper class ballroom, and the filthy middle class try the so called dance clubs where the professional susie wongs are waiting... ;D

I'm not looking to ballroom dance. I'm lookin' to groove!  Do some rockin' The Beat 94.5 kinda stuff.  Not in HK apparently :(

Quote
I like the dinner bill one.  You have to make an effort to go for the bill, but pull off at the last second so the host will save face by being the generous guy.  :D

Another that I had read, but doesn't seem to be the case so much now:  Don't finish the parts off the dish on the table. It implies that your host is too cheap to feed you enough.

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Re: NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2006, 11:57:39 AM »

Yup, you are right.  Either that or you will look too poor by being so hungry on good food, as the rich has too much goodies to eat all the time. You have to look a bit used to good food and holding back a bit to reflect your status....   ;D  Cleaning the plate up reflects badly for both yourself and the host.  What a joke!
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DragonSpeed

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Re: NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2006, 11:04:16 AM »

Hi DS..... did you go to HK & China on a tour package?  If you did, would you recommend it?
My wife & I are thinking of taking a trip to China as well, but are rather confused & overwhelmed with the numerous tour packages being offered. But if we can find out first hand from someone like youself who has been been, would be a great help........  thx

We did our China part of the trip via an organized tour in Cantonese.  The tours are much cheaper to arrange from Hong Kong, if you're OK with Cantonese or Mandarin, that's the way to go for the tour.

The tour itself was an 8 day tour to Zhengzhou, Luoyang, Xian and Beijing.  It was arranged through Hong Thai tours in Hong Kong.  8 days was certainly the limit of how long I would want to be on an organized tour.  Up at 0630 every day, and not back to the hotel until 2030.  Each day was usually 2 or 3 sights, and possibly some evening event.  To help subsidize the cost of the tour, you will be taken to various liittle shops that all give commission kickbacks to the tour company.  The salespeople will be VERY aggressive, and you'll want to throttle them.  If you've been to a timeshare sales pitch and avoided buying, then you'll probably be ALMOST able to stand these people.  It was even worse due to the fact that we travelled in low season.  These salespeople were HUNGRY for business.

With the tour, I definitely think we got to see more than we would have, had we travelled alone and the tour guides worked to make sure we got good seats for events, and looked after talking to hotel staff when there were language issues. (English->Cantonese->Mandarin for me).  I know Hong Thai has a local office here in Vancouver, and they might be able to determine pricing for English tours if you need as well.

Any more questions, feel free to ask.

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Re: NFR - Things I learned from Hong Kong/China
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2006, 05:57:32 PM »

Hong Kong - Weather: 21C 75% humidity

China - -2C-> -10C Very dry.

Hong Kong Crowds.  Ha!  Is there a time when there AREN'T crowds?

China - Off season.  We had a whole show to our 8 member tour.  I like having very few tourists around, but it does make the street vendors and the merchants a little more agressive, I think, having less targets.

Cheers,

B.