Hong Kong Randoms

What a strange thing to be alive beneath cherry blossoms - Kobayashi Issa

The cherry trees have finally bloomed, almost a month earlier than last year, and again made the King's Garden my favorite place in Stockholm! Very few circumstances would make me miss this, I just have to make a visit traditionally every year with my boyfriend. And I just have to photograph it every year even though it looks the same. The only thing that changes a bit every year, are ourselves. In about ten years, I'll put together all the pictures of me in this place and see my progress, haha. But wonderful is short so you have to hurry these days to see it.


Everyday Pictures

I'm very bad with a camera these days, which is particularly noticeable in the absence of new folders on my computer. I discovered that I had neither a folder for March nor April, which is strange for me, who couldn't go outside the door without a camera in my bag. Don't know if I should blame it on the iphone use or my less frequent blogging where daily life has almost been ruled out, but for my own part it feels kind of sad, so now I'm making an effort to gather some images from the recent past. In no particular order.

I took this picture right after I signed the contract of employment a couple of weeks ago. It was cloudy and gray but I felt so much happiness during my little walk towards Slussen. This view of the Old Town, which looks like an old postcard, will be what I see every day on the way to work after the summer. So amazingly wonderful that I can hardly wait.

Every year I take pictures of the same flowers, but that is only because it is always as wonderful. I have already eaten my first ice cream at the Royal Garden where cherry trees had started to bloom, but I will soon make a return when they have bloomed properly. Will never be missed.

This weekend I was in Uppsala to see Dina receive her much deserved master diploma in science of law! We are very proud of this amazing girl. It's always wonderful to witness that moment in friends' lives, especially when it's such a nice ceremony like they have at Uppsala University *jealous*.

A number of café meetings a month (week) with friends is necessary for survival. The one in Uppsala after Dinas exam takes the prize in both cozyness and pastries. Where in Stockholm can I get it this nicely served? Tell me, please.

Uppsala again, but since this is the place of my project, theres a lot more of Uppsala in my everyday life than usual. Behind the boats is the site for the art museum that I will design. 

There hasn't been a lot of partying lately, but the after work event Out of Office was the most fun in a long time when it comes to partying in Stockholm. Crazy atmosphere! It didn't matter that it was still light outside, people went crazy. And the best part was that it ended early so I could go to bed on time without feeling destroyed the day after. Fun 22-year-old girl.

Another food picture (sorry but food is less camera shy than humans). My boyfriend and I sometimes like to treat ourselves during the weekdays by eating out, but because we are students and money does not grow on trees, Rabble come to the rescue (you know the app with lot of discounts). I often find places where you can eat for half price + we get to test something new. Now you know that too.

Otherwise, most of my time right now is spent on school and my graduate project. And just as some people feel their mood varies after the weather, my mood depends on the progress of my project. If its good, I'm the happiest alive, and if its bad, I'm not my best self. Creative professions may be fun but there is a downside too, and it is definitely the anxiety when you get stuck with no ideas. I just wanted to throw everything in the trash and start over, but I can't because of the time. I must learn to distance myself from my project, because it won't work if I'm going to feel bad and cry every time it doesn't go well. And maybe I should lower my expectations on myself a bit (story of my life).

Hong Kong Nights

Hong Kong at night is amazing, not only because of the neon lights and the illuminated skyscrapers, but also because everything is open very late and there is a huge variety of dining and nightlife options. It is really too bad we didn't have time to experience more of the nightlife. I wanted to visit more clubs and more skybars.

My newfound friend Elton from Hong Kong, that some from our group already knew since he was an exchange student at our school, got to be our guide a few evenings. He took us to Lan Kwai Fong, a street in the city center with hoards of people, bars, loud music and party atmosphere. There was not enough room in all the bars so people was drinking on the street. If you get in the mood for party despite feeling tired and unfresh? Yes.

If you turn through and alley from Lan Kwai Fong you will find this amazing place. Partly indoors and partly outdoors, where everyone sits with hookahs. It was only Western mainstream music which I thought was perfect but everyone may not agree, haha. Elton knew the bartender and gave the whole group free drinks which I also thought was perfect until the next day.

This fabulous picture (awesome quality) is the only one of me from that night and describes my condition quite well. Ridiculously happy with a flashing princess crown on my head all night which is now my favorite souvenir from Hong Kong. Awesome night.


Other nights we sat on this rooftop bar that was near our hostel. Love the combination of high, wobbly bar stools right by a glass railing...

One evening we spent in Mongkok which is located in Kowloon. Mongkok has an insane amount of markets and cheap shopping. There is a whole street with just sneakers (ie real Nike, Adidas, Reebok, etc..) for cheap prices, a whole street with electronics and so on.

And like many times before, we weren't quite careful with where we ate or what we ate. Until one after one started to suffer from food poisoning. Yes, 9 of us 12 fell victim to it, I was of course one of them. We all got sick on different days of different food so there is a big risk of being getting the tourist sickness if you're not careful. Luckily it only lasted one day for all of us. Towards the end of the trip, I ate only rice, crackers and bananas.

The last night we went to Happy Valley, where races are held every Wednesday. Again, awful lot of people and a very lovely atmosphere. None of us really knows anything about horses but most of us still went to bet each round.


And as an appropriate farewell, some of us went up to Victoria Peak the last night for the most amazing view ever.



One of our trips was to Macau. Like Hong Kong, Macau is a Special Administrative Region in China, and was also a colony until the late 90s. Unlike Hong Kong which was a British colony, Macau was a Portuguese, and the traces of colonial times is more obvious here. Looking at the picture you will find the houses and squares in Portuguese style, signs in Portuguese and other elements of the city such as a lot of mopeds. Macau is in general a very strange mix, not only is it a mix of Portugal and China, but throw in some Las Vegas in the mix too. Yes, Macau is the Las Vegas of Asia.

The ferry, or whatever it is (to me it mostly reminded me of a huge jet-ski that flew over the water) takes about an hour from Hong Kong, and you have to go through passport checks like you're visiting another country. 

Ruinas de Igreja de São Paulo is one of the most popular attractions, although it is only a facade. I can imagine that it looks more amazing in good weather (the entire city had probably given me a better impression with better weather, by that time it was raining and I felt most wet and miserable). Too bad.

Men trots sina portugisiska inslag påminner större delen av staden om att det ändå är Kina vi befinner oss i. 

Most smaller streets looked like this, crowded and shabby with balconies that looked like cages. Awesome or terrible - you decide.

And as always, there was a temple to visit, this time the A-Ma Temple.

When we got tired of walking around in the rain, we figured it was time for gambling, and went to Macau's own version of The Venetian. Which is named exactly the same here. Macau may not have as many casinos but they are huge and apparently they make more money than in Las Vegas! The casino part of The Venetian (where you could not photograph) was bigger than any of the ones I saw in Vegas.

The typical indoor sky was there too, of course. After a whole day of rain even a fake-sky felt good. How strange to walk around in a Venice Inspired place in a Las Vegas inspired place in an ex-Portuguese colony belonging to China. Inception?

After being in Las Vegas, Macau didn't quite live up to expectations when it comes to the casino part, despite their large and super luxurious casinos. All hotels are not found in the same place as in Vegas, some large casinos were on a completely different island so we had to go across the bridge. There was only one area that reminded me of a weak copy of Vegas.


But you can't complain about the insides. In MGMs hotel we found this underwater world which has to be one of the craziest indoor environments I've been in! And apparently it is only temporary as they have new themes after a few months.

We had a last drink there before it was time to take the big "jet-ski" back to Hong Kong.

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