Friday, 9 March 2007

The Knitberts Do Hong Kong

Well, here we are in Chater Gardens, Hong Kong, where a kind lady took this photo of us together. I must say my head is still spinning. I made the mistake of going into work on Wednesday morning, then we packed, went to Heathrow and caught our flight on Wednesday evening. As I slept through most of the flight and we are eight hours ahead of the UK here, I do not remember any of Thursday, so when I woke up this morning (that's Friday) it was difficult to work out where I was. It hardly seems possible I travelled nearly six thousand miles since Wednesday. By the way, although I slept most of the time, I did manage to crochet one granny square during the flight, I'll post a picture next time.

The one thing I was really keen to do before anything else was visit a tailor and get some clothes made, so we got directions from our hotel reception and set off on the Mass Transit Railway (MTR). Luckily, Mr Knitbert has been to Hong Kong twice before to work, so he knows his way around. We even have little cards now that work on every form of public transport, just like an Oyster card in London (only these are called Octopus). We found a suitable tailor, and I was measured for a jacket, skirt and trousers in silk shantung, while Mr Knitbert is having a suit in sinister grey cashmere and some very nice shirts. We had to come back this afternoon for the first fitting and will be going for our second fitting tomorrow afternoon. Everything looked great at the first fitting and we inadvertently ordered another jacket and pair of trousers. Oops!

I promise modelled photos later in the holiday.

To pass the time until our fitting, we decided to visit the Peak, which is the tallest mountain on Hong Kong island, and normally gives a superb view over the harbour. Unfortunately, there has been a low cloud over the city today, so we could only see mist from the top, but we did have a very interesting tram ride up the side of the mountain. It is the first time I have been on a tram which climbs at 45 degrees! All the very tall surrounding buildings look as though they are leaning at impossible angles, but actually it is the tram which is leaning at an impossible angle. The journey back down is pretty scary as you are going backwards...

This tram is one of the oldest transportation systems on the island, and has been in operation since 1880. As you stand waiting for the tram, looking up the track, you can see that buildings and roads have been built since then at successively higher levels over the tramway. The whole of Hong Kong seems to have been built up in levels like this, so that as you look up, you look further forward in time.

After the Peak, we visited Hong Kong Park, which is a rather pleasant green area in the centre, surrounded by very tall buildings. This photo is of the Tai Chi garden inside the Park.

There is an aviary in the park, which you can usually go into, but at the moment the walk-in area is closed because wild birds which have died of avian flu have been found within 3km of the park. There are posters everywhere giving advice about not touching or feeding birds, and what to do if you do accidentally touch a bird.

Mr Knitbert managed to take this quite nice photo of me by a waterfall in the Park after a few false starts. He has a terrible habit of faffing about and then taking a photo of me just as my eyes are closed or my mouth is open (usually to say "what are you doing? have you taken it yet?"). [Mr Knitbert recommends: keeping the eyes open and the mouth shut while being photographed].

After all that we were exhausted, and returned to the hotel for a rest. Tomorrow we are hoping to go to Lantau island and visit the Pau Lin monastery, although this will involve getting up quite early as we have to be back by 3 pm for our second clothes fitting. I'll be glad to get back on the aircraft for a rest!


Aknita said...

Thank you so much for taking time out on your journey to New Zealand to tell us all about your wonderful stay in Hong Kong! I feel very privileged, and it is almost like being there with you!

Nive to see Mr Knitbert again too! ;)

Lovely photos! :)

Fiona said...

Looks like you're having a lovely holiday, and I am too - vicariously.

Anonymous said...

Oh great, you are describing your visit very well, I could almost be there. Take care and have loads of fun.

jadeandchrissy said...

Lovely to read about your holiday, the photos are great, look forward to reading more

Seahorse said...

Looks and sounds as though you're having a fabulous time!

Kai said...

Hee! Hee!
Hong Kong sounds (and looks) lovely.. I'm intrigued by these outfits you are going for fittins for... :) Can't wait to see them!

Definitely looking forward to reading more about your travels.. :)

Catknit said...

Looks like you're having a fantastic time, the photos are beautiful-I need a holiday soon.