Thursday, February 22, 2018

This is how we CNY

Lunches, dinners, dumplings, cocktails, lanterns and shopping for all things red on Yide Lu. Making muesli for breakfasts and biscuits for fun. Sightseeing, mountain climbing, flower buying, visiting friends and eating amazing food. Evening drinks at every place open in Guangzhou where we could take the dog, as well as day time coffees with Suzi Q. Napping.

It's just like Christmas but with more people, food and shiny things. Actually it is more like  a reverse advent..with activities continuing after the first day of new years day. Anyways...whatever it is, it is awesome and I'm now going to celebrate every single year.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Macau - what we did and how we did it

Macau: full disclosure. It's not my favourite place. It's a bit weird isn't it? That mix of China, Portugal and casinos...but you can enjoy the Portugal side of things and ignore the fact that you are smack bang in the midst of all the high rollers.

Stay in Coloane. We were given a great recommendation and stayed at Pousada De  Coloane. It's perfectly tucked far away from the casino crowds, nestled into some quiet bushland across the road from the beach. Perfect in every way (except for the food...just to manage your expectations. Enjoy the outlook and location...forget about eating there). 

If you are travelling from China, the hotel is about a 30 minute taxi ride from the border crossing. Word of warning though. Should be a 45 minute drive except that EVERY TAXI DRIVER WE HAD DROVE LIKE A RALLY CAR DRIVER.  Even the one who appeared to be 83 years of age. 

So back to what we did. We walked into Coloane village and ate delicious custard tarts from Lord Stows. Coloane is a beautiful spot to walk around and take in the brightly coloured buildings and interesting laneways. It's pretty small though so once you're done, hop in a taxi past all the high rises and high rollers and mooch around Taipe. We wandered around the old cobblestone streets before a lunch at Antonio's tapas bar, which was better food than Antonio's proper...

While the sun was shining we travelled into Macau's old town to take in the sites with all of our holidaying friends. Mandatory ice-cream at Limoncello's then back to the serenity of Coloane. 

Day two was spent hiking the Coloane Trail. Lots of well signposted paths through pockets of greenery and hazy see views. Surprise temples and reservoirs and suspension bridges make this a worthwhile way to spend a morning. Easy to find if you cross the road from the Pousada De Coloane hotel (just walk up their back stairs towards the main road) and start the trail from the BBQ area just behind the carpark. 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Happy year of the dog!'s taken me nearly 3 years to get this Lunar New Year thing. But this time around I've enjoyed all the traditions - Got my hair cut. Cleaned my house. Got my decorations. Organised my hongbao. Bought my dog an outfit.

Most of all though, the generosity at this time of year, makes my heart sing. It's nice to do things for people and have things done for you. So much happiness and generosity around this big city, there is know way you are not going to have a good year!

And while I'm a little late to post things here these days - I'd like to wish everyone a wonderful and prosperous new year. May it be filled with puppy dog kisses, rainbows, and kindness.

Love Suzi Q and me


Friday, February 2, 2018

This is how we weekend

Late night dumplings, dog walks to coffee....virtually lunch, so we guess it's Yum Cha time. Long drive to the Botanical Gardens with glasshouses filled with cacti and groves of the biggest palms you'll ever see. A private tour with our favourite botanist and topical discussions defining mulch.

Ice-cream is a revelation then rendezvous with the dog for sneaky beers, followed by whiskey highballs and Japanese food with good company (sans dog). Speakeasy's and people watching followed by a bike gang ride through the tunnel, hiding from the neon lights. Then beers at the coolest beer place in this town with everyone's favourite dog Suzi Q. Late starts with blueberry pancakes, more coffee and yum cha - taking shelter from the cold. More bike gangs to galleries, and all the beautiful laneways of Dongshankou. And the very last: tile shops and records and we're done. 

Sad / happy to say bye bye - such easy friendships can be hard to find in these parts (though I've been very lucky on that count). But next stop is Canberra town where there are trees to talk about, dogs to walk, beers to drink and sourdough for everyone.