Pulsars, Plants, and Present Participles

'Journeys in Hong Kong and Beyond'

A snippet of what I have been up to since I have arrived in Hong Kong.

I am currently enjoying a week off of school and protests have thwarted my plans to visit Kowloon so you get to enjoy another blog. I recently shared some photos with all of you and I feel that I should provide some further description of the things I have been doing.

A couple of weeks ago I attended an International Amateur Hockey Tournament. The tournament was three days long. I had the privilege of seeing the final two games. The first game was for the coveted Bronze or in this case a silver plate. The teams, a stacked Philippines team with players named Dunkaler and Shnider and the other without the wits apparently to enhance their team with large Caucasian players. I don’t recall the other teams name but their roster was made of Asians who like the stereotype would suggest, stood shorter than their ‘Filipino’ counterparts. The second game, for gold was more of the same. The Mitsubishi team from Japan was made entirely of Japanese players. They were fast and played well as a team but were no match for Hong Kong’s team of expats. Each line on the Hong Kong team had had at least two Canadians on it, I knew they were Canadian from the small flags they wear on their shoulders. One fellow on the Hong Kong team had to be 6’5” without his skates on; he dominated on defense with a reach that could thwart two of Japans attackers at once. Gold went to the home team, Hong Kong, who to their credit did have a HK born captain.   The entire tournament took place on the tenth floor of Mega Box a giant building that houses department stores, an IKEA, Toys’R’Us and an entire floor dedicated to kids. A little strange to think of an ice rink on the tenth floor of a building but it worked and it’s not like the have the room Edmonton Mall has to be so spread out.

This past Sunday I earned a coaching certificate for Netball. ‘What is netball?’ you ask. I had the same question in August when I was asked to attend. Netball is the most popular sport amongst the commonwealth according to Wikipedia. Way to go Canada we are not up on commonwealth games, thanks Merica. A sport commonly played by women, netball is actually a lot harder than it looks. It is a non contact sport similar to basketball but with out the dribbling and you’re only allowed to move in your designated spot on the court. How did I become a coach of a sport I didn’t know existed until two months ago? Another great question by you (way to go two for two.) Either netball is as popular as I would have assumed it to be, seeing as I had never heard of it, or Hong Kong is desperate for netball coaches. The day began (and yes it only took half a day to earn the certificate) with the instructor asking us if we were familiar with the sport. Several people raised their hands indicating that they had never played netball and knew very little about it. I had studied the weeks leading up fearing that I would be the only imbecile to attend a coaching session for a game I knew nothing about. We were taught a number of drills and essential skills to pass on to students. The day was full of great ideas and games for the future and I am glad I attended.

Tonight I am going to head to the night markets on the Kowloon side. Any of you familiar with Hong Kong will know that that is the area where the protests have been going on for the last few days. I have not experienced much of the protest other than a gathering in Causeway Bay (the island side) that was extremely peaceful and frankly rather subdued. It consisted of people relaxing on the street that had been designated for them to protest, many did not even have signs. Protesters on this side (the island side) resemble shoppers looking for a break more so than upset citizens. I have been avoiding the Kowloon side due to the protests and stated as much when I began this post earlier this week. Tonight I am no longer going to allow the protests to ruin my vacation (week off) and am going to venture over to the night markets. I highly doubt any harm will come to me and likely I will not even notice protests are taking place. Tourists’ areas and financiers along with high-end shops like Dolce and Gabbana and Louis Vuitton ensure that the protesters don’t cripple their ability to make money. The night markets are not sporting any of the fore mentioned items but the mall near by certainly will be. I’ll let you know how it all goes in a future post.

Yet another long blog, sorry readers. I can’t seem to stop typing. If only I had this problem back in my University days when I would stare blankly at the screen for hours trying to write a 3000-word essay on the merits of having multiple wives in an indigenous tribe. Yep, you read that right I actually still have the essay on file too. Until next time, keep looking up, because you don’t want to be led astray by those heels in front of you. Now do you?

Fraser • 02/10/2014

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