Ben in Hong Kong©

Monday, January 26, 2009

Parade and fireworks

Apparently New York, San Francisco and even mainland China look to Hong Kong to see how a Chinese New Year Parade should be done.

It was therefore with great excitement that I attended my first Chinese New Year parade full of expectation and anticipation.

We started the evening by going for a curry at Chungking mansions. Chungking mansions is a giant building on Nathan Road that is the home to refugees and budget hostels for young backpackers.

It is no surprise then that the building is famous for being full of refugees trying to scam young backpackers.

Once you get over the distinct impression that you have stepped into Baghdad on a bad day Chungking mansions offers amazing cheap and authentic restaurants. Probably the most well known establishment is named the "Taj Mahal". Chungking is such a maze of stairwells and corridors that we were soon spotted by a man who promised to take us to the Taj Mahal and instead took us to a totally different restaraunt. It would seem that whilst we did not have backpacks on our shoulders we were going to be scammed anyway. We eventually found the Taj Mahal and had a very tasty meal.

After dinner a group of seven of us waded through the crowds in search of a good spot to watch the parade. We eventually found somewhere and waited for the fun to begin.

And the parade was.....boring.

Well not so much the parade, the crowd was boring. Or perhaps it was a little of both. Watch this video and see the excitment and atmosphere in the crowd. You see? There is none. No one was waving, clapping or smiling. If the crowd was a patient and I was the doctor I would have classed it as being terminal, with euthanasia as the best medication.

So the evening ended with us all catching the Star Ferry home and going to bed.

Tonight though there are far different plans. Nikki has booked a restaraunt up the peak for 8 of us to watch the fireworks and consume a four course meal with unlimited drink. To secure the booking Nikki had to sign a four page contract. I consider this to be slightly excessive for dinner reservations but this is Hong Kong, and much like parades such things are taken too seriously.


ps. On a totally different note click here for something that had me crying with laughter.

1 comment:

laura said...

I think you'll find that Nikki and I were in high spirits at the parade, we were singing 'Barbie Girl' with the brass band. That was definitly the highlight of the parade!