Smart Travels 香港行 (3-4)

You know you are going to live a very long life? Do you know that?
No, I didn’t know that.
You see? This career line is very long. You see?
So I’m going to work for decades more?
Is that good news? I’m not sure.
Oh, because, ok, you’re active person.
You don’t want to sit lazy at home.
No, no, no.
You see, you see the red color? The red color that means too much of heat inside your body.
I see.
This, that means the blood circulation is not very strong.

Her consultation also came with a few caveats about my health.

So no coffee, not a lot of salt, more exercise, what a surprise, and the thing is to look OK.
Thank you, Jane. Thank you very much.
You’re welcome.

Hong Kong’s efficient transportation system includes trams and buses, an excellent subway system, and reasonably-priced taxis. But my favorite transportation bargain is the Star Ferry. These green and white ferries have linked Hong Kong Island with the Kowloon Peninsula for the past 100 years. The journey takes about ten minutes and tickets cost only about a quarter. And with these views, it’s obvious why the ferry is one of the city’s most popular attractions.

When you’re in Hong Kong, you might as well do as the locals do. When they’re not working, they’re shopping, seriously. For many, Hong Kong is synonymous with shopping, and for good reason. The city is a prime distribution center for much of the world’s products. In fact, it’s difficult to find anyplace here where you can’t shop.

Thousands of malls, department stores and designer boutiques offer every imaginable name brand luxury, as well as factory seconds and designer knockoffs. In stark contrast are the many traditional open-air markets, nestled in among the towering skyscrapers. Here, dedicated shoppers hone their bargaining skills.

Shopping in Hong Kong extends far beyond buying life’s necessities. It’s a recreational and social activity. So unless you are a committed non-shopper, best to leave a little extra packing room in the suitcase.

So, apart from shopping, what’s Hong Kong’s most popular pastime? Well, I’d put my money on horseracing. Here, betting on the ponies isn’t just a sport. It’s a passion.

Millions of people follow these events and the average betting turnover per race is the highest in the world. The first race was held here at the Happy Valley track more than 150 years ago. And the track even remained open during the Japanese occupation of the city in the 1940s. Until recently, horseracing was the only legal form of gambling in Hong Kong. And with an annual turnover equivalent to more than a billion US dollars, the Sport of Kings definitely reigns.

The Hong Kong Tourist Board’s “Cultural Kaleidoscope” program makes it really easy to get a crash course in Chinese culture. Everyday you can take a different workshop on important traditions that will help you more fully appreciate your visit here.

And best of all, the classes are free. For example, one day, you can learn how to do Tai Chi.

(Next pattern, turning and looking at the moon. About 45 degrees to your left and right side. Let your palms face each other.)

Another day you can take a class in the ancient design method of feng shui.

(Good morning, everybody, and welcome to Hong Kong, and welcome to our feng shui class this morning.)

Literally translated as wind water, feng shui describes how homes and workspaces can be designed to achieve harmony with the spirits of nature.


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