Pulsars, Plants, and Present Participles

'Journeys in Hong Kong and Beyond'

It’s Been Awhile

Hello Readers,

It has been awhile. Surprise, surprise! This 6-month gap is becoming the norm it would seem. It is not that I haven’t had anything to write about; in fact the last 6 months have been rather eventful. Many blogs have been started and discarded over the period. But here I am back to tell you all about me. Glorious, Wondrous, ME, ME, ME! After all, what is the point of this blog other than to inform you all of my adventures and experiences. Let us begin.

In September I went back to work. I am now in my third year at IMS and have already signed on for another three. When you find a job you love stick with it.

October was a fun month but it also brought bad news. Good news first. My brother came for a weeklong visit. It was his first time in Asia and boy did I have fun showing him around. I had the week off work so I packed in as much as I could for him. We went kayaking, saw the Big Buddha, scoped the view from the peak, shopped the outdoor markets of Kowloon, admired the beaches of Stanley and inked ourselves with Chinese characters. Mine says chicken soup while his is vegetable. Okay, okay not really, at least I hope not. His says older brother while mine younger, a fitting memory for his first time in Hong Kong with his little bro. I should also mention the food, although that was only important to Nance and I apparently. My brother was rather taken a back that we planned everything around where to eat, I was a little surprised by the realization myself. My gut has always had an upper hand over my good sense though thus I should not have been too surprised.

November: as I mentioned October brought bad news, which only worsened in November. By late October it was inevitable that Ron (my step father) was not going to make it to Xmas. He had been diagnosed in September with cancer yet none of us thought it would get so bad so quickly; he had survived it twice in the past. Unfortunately the third time was not as favourable and on November 16th he passed quietly surrounded by loved ones. I flew home for a weekend at the beginning of November to say goodbye. He was a wonderful man who taught me many life lessons. I miss him very much and really wish he were still around to joke with and teach me more. It is comforting to know that he will be remembered fondly by so many, and that so many of his friends and family were able to say their goodbyes. The hospital parking lot mad a fortune while he was there because he had a non stop train of visitors, and the smile it brought to his face still warms my heart and brings tears to my eyes today. I Love You Ron.

December, Christmas Time! For those of you who are reading this and didn’t know I was home for Xmas this year, well I’m sorry but two weeks goes quickly and family was my priority. That said you are all still wonderful friends and I will be home this summer so we can hopefully meet up then.

Nance and I traveled to Canada for her first white Christmas. The trip home didn’t start well unfortunately, we were held in China because Nance didn’t have an ETA that neither of us was aware she even required. Why they didn’t tell us in HK before we left? Why they didn’t tell us while we were waiting three hours in China? I have no idea. It took Nance all of a minute to apply online and another ten for it to be approved but by then our gate was closed and we were stuck in China for the night. It was a horrible experience and prevented us from attending my Dad’s family Xmas party. Lesson learned. Don’t fly through China, get direct flights if you can, and always check the visa requirements even if you think there are none.

Once we were home things changed for the better. I was able to visit with family and friends and while I wasn’t able to see everyone (sorry again eh) I enjoyed the company of those I could. Oh and Nance loved seeing the snowfall and making little snowmen on the deck. It is a beautiful thing if you don’t have to shovel it every day.

It is now the beginning of February and Nance and I are returning to Hong Kong after a week vacation in Australia. Nance’s family put us up for a relaxing week of warm Ozzie sun. The highlight of the trip was a three-hour train ride on the Puffing Billy. We spoiled ourselves with the lunch option, a three-course meal in a lovely old styled train cart. The meal was delicious and the seating made us feel like first class passengers on the rails. I highly recommend upgrading your ticket should you ever get the chance to visit. The train winds though the Yarra Valley past wooded slopes and wide reaching fields of lush green and big blue sky.

That concludes this long awaited blog. Hopefully I will present you with an entry before too long. And for those of you who are merely interested in the pictures, don’t fret they’re on their way. Though I guess the likelihood of you reading this far is slim if all you wanted was photos. My intention is to edit together some of the videos I took aboard the Puffing Billy and search through my Photos from the last six months and present the highlights. Shouldn’t take me more than six months.

I’ll leave you with a couple life lessons from an old friend. Look your best even if you are just going out for milk and don’t save all your money in one place.



Fraser • 05/02/2017

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