A Travellerspoint blog

August 2015

Meandering Through Temple Street Night Market

Hong Kong

overcast

When the sunset’s in and the evening transformed into night , the trader’s bring out their wear’s to sell at the Temple Street Night Market in the Kwaloon bay area. I strolled into the market in the evening and instantly became part of the hustle bustle of the place . Tiny shop’s selling toy’s , bangles, coins , tea pot’s , t shirt’s , and many other nick nak’s . Reminded me of the Karol Bagh market in Delhi . It was also very similar to the Thamel market in Kathmandu barring the dope off course . Littered with eateries , massage parlours and jewellery shop’s .The lane was brightly light up as passer by shopped and bargained for a good deal .

Named after the Tin Hua temple located in the middle , it is a hot spot for shopper’s .I bought some great plastic toy’s and robot’s for my Nephew . Then sat down at a noodle restaurant for a hot snack . As i looked skyward i was amazed to find a sign saying “ Kamla Beauty and Hair Saloon” the word’s where in hindi , it struck me that even Indian’s have landed here to sell their services .

The Street’s on either side have shop’s selling clothes and jewellery . I strolled into a shop called “ Crocodile .This was a shop selling T shirt’s and short’s . I was delighted and picked up two brightly colures t shirts . The ladies at in the shop’s gave me a big discount 900 HKD for two extra large T shirt’s and shorts was a good deal. I thanked them took some picture’s and strolled away . The women on the footpath were all nattily dressed selling their massage services , but i was in no mood to be tiltilated so i walked away .This is off course a famous area of Hong Kong and a must see for most tourist as bargain’s are rife here .
Took the taxi back to my hotel costed me 100 HDK would have been better if i had taken the Mtr , but what the hell i needed a conversation. John was my taxi driver “ You see sir Honk Kong has it’s own unique smell and that is the smell of money . All the rich Millionaires of China have kept their million’s in Hong Kong , they don’t trust the Chinese Government . They think their money is safe here.” he said tuning his car radio again and again .” Well i wanted to move my money from India to Hong Kong but it’s not possible now , rules have become very strict and the new Modi government is hell bent on taxing the rich .No one is being spared .” i said with bait of tension in my voice . John looked out of the car window “ you must goto Macau and see the gambling den’s their , it’s also good for sex .” I nodded and said “ Well i already have too many vices i don’t need another , but yes Macau is on my agenda.” The taxi stopped near the Holiday Inn Express Hotel and i strolled back into my room . On the way up i was quizzed by a spanish couple , to whom i said” Well i am travelling around the world this is my 11th country in south east Asia . They were amazed and let out a big “ WOW”

Posted by Anuj Tikku 08:14 Archived in Hong Kong Comments (0)

The Fortune Teller of Mah Mo Temple

Buddha Temple

sunny 30 °C

The Fortune Teller of Man Mo Temple

I strolled across the Sheung Wan area in Hong Kong as my hotel was situated their. It is a bustling array of streets filled with antic and curio shops . I enjoyed chatting to the shop owners and take a peek at their wear’s . Pot’s and statues made of bone china , painting’s of Chinese Philosopher’s and monk’s . Feng Chui , bell’s ,essence stick’s and what not . The street is lined up with these shop’s .One turn and then you see an array of shop’s selling spices by the ton .

The Man Mo temple is situated at the heart of this area and is a popular Buddhist temple. Here i meet Harmung the Fortune Teller . He sat in busy corner of the temple on an old chair with a table full of paper’s and card’s on it .” Now before i start let me remind you it will be 500 hong kong dollar’s my consultation fee .” I nodded and affirmed . He put both my hand’s together and started reading my lines . “ You have strong life line you will live to be 80 years old may be more , but be careful of your drinking you might get heart problem by the time you are 50 “. he said in a chant ones accent . I told him my father was also a heart patient and it run’s in the family . You like to work but you need to focus more to get success .” he said in a tone of a wise man . “ Will i always have money .” i asked . “ Yes money no problem for you will always have enough to spend and will live a very comfortable life , but you know what you are too crazy about sex.” he said with a glee in his eye’s . I was amazed how did he know that or may be it was just written on my face .” you need to be a bit careful here , pay for se as much as you like but only love a woman after you know her background well and are sure she is from a good family otherwise you will land up in trouble .” he advised me . I thought to myself he doesn’t know how much trouble my sex life has caused me already but yes i agreed with him. I told him about the tragic death of my father he told me to pray to buddha for peace.

I asked him will i have children will i get married .” I don't know about marriage but yes you will have children for sure , it is not important to be married to have children for a man of your nature . You must always follow your heart and never fear , because that is your biggest enemy . You will travel the world and explore it’s many secrets “ he said sounding like the Jedai master Yodo.

I thanked him for his service then wandered into the temple and prayed for my father’s soul . I prayed for his forgiveness and walked out with the blessing’s of Buddha .

Posted by Anuj Tikku 18:52 Archived in Hong Kong Tagged temple Comments (0)

The Peak of Hong Kong with Allen and Billy Lo

Hong Kong

semi-overcast

After my the chin wag with Sid . I headed back to my hotel Holiday Inn Express in the Sheung Wan district of Hong Kong Island . The hotel was a bit costly affair around 100 dollars a night , but the grand breakfast and the view from my hotel window made up for everything . I quickly connected with Billy and Allen Lo my roommates at Christ’s College Blackheath and fixed a date for the evening .Both the Chinese brothers landed up in the evening . We were meeting after 25 years and it was a great reunion of friend’s who had studied in the same school from 1998 to 2000 . Both had families and kid’s billy was a senior pilot now and still smoked menthol cigarettes like he use to . “ You bastard you were the one who got me to smoke for the first time in school “ i taunted him and now i can’t stop .

We quickly moved to where the action was happening in Hong Kong the Times Square . This was a huge amalgamation of fashion outlets , mall’s , designer show room’s , eateries , bars and fun . A bit like Clarke Quay in Singapore . They had these Blow up’s of Giant Japanese animation Characters called Gandam. These are giant Robot’s from the Gandam Series which is hailed as the Star Trek of Japan . I strolled around these huge characters and took some pictures . Then we all headed to a near by Chinese restaurant for dinner . The feast was set Fried Duck , beef stew ,rice and chilly pork . Billy couldn’t get enough of his new Samsung edge phone and kept showing me the pictures of his daughter and family . “ You know it’s like time never passed , when old friend’s meet . My memories of you all just coming back . How Billy would make noodles in the morning and wake every one up and Allen would tell him not to smoke acting like the perfect elder brother .” i said . “ Hey Tikku Tse is asking does Tikku still have smelly feet .” billy barked reading out an ams from a common friend Frankie Tse who missed our dinner date .

The dinner was yummy and after taking some more photo’s from my new Cannon camera which was too hot for the waitress to handle , we moved out . I shared my current travel experience to 10 countries and off course showed off my Bollywood acting video’s , my scene’s with Shah Rukh Khan . Allen was impressed “ You know i watched the Three idiot’s , it was a big hit in Honk Kong and Amir Khan did a great job in the film .” he said . I was not surprised since Amir Khan’s new Film PK was also shown in China and they loved it , it was a huge success . Come Allen said let us show Tikku the Peak of Hong Kong.

This was off course Victoria Peak Perching on The Peak at 396 metres above sea level, The Peak Tower is one of the most stylish architectural Hong Kong attractions.Inside the Peak tower is a dazzling array of restaurant’s , shops and entertainment venues set against the beautiful backdrop of the city. One get’s a panoramic view of Hong Kong from the Peak , you can board the Peak Tram to get the ultimate experience of Hong Kong’s beauty . I captured the view from the top and even took a video of the teeming landscape beneath . A scoop of Ice cream and we were all done for the day . Ahh I am In Hong Kong it was finally sinking in.

Posted by Anuj Tikku 17:55 Archived in Hong Kong Tagged hong kong Comments (0)

In Hong Kong with Sid

Hong Kong

In Hong Kong With Sid

I reached Hong Kong and as i stepped out of the airport the first thing i felt was the density of the city . Hong Kong is a densely populated city .The roads and by lanes are narrower and sky scrappers are densely packed together . Next mooring was an endless wait for Sid , my friend for 15 years who i was meeting after a long time . After making a few call’s to my chinese friends from my christ’s college days Allen and Billy . I waited for Sid to arrive he swaggered in , with his mercurial walk . “ Long time old fiend , lot of water ha passed since we last meet .” He of off course referring to my father’s death and the tragedy that had befallen me a few years back . “ Thing’s are better now and i have left my past behind . I have started this travellthon around the world and it is keeping me busy .” I handed him a box of chocolates and started taking him though my travelthon video’s . I gave him my picture book and we headed off to Sid’s apartment . “ You know Sid i cried for the first time two month’s after my father’s death . I just couldn’t weep but when i opened his cupboard to give away his clothes to the poor . I saw the letter’s he had kept of mine from my college day’s . I just broke down then .” Sid got a bit emotional “ I lost my father also just a week before your dad’s tragedy . It’s when parents are gone one really know’s their importance and how they had been holding the fort together . I took a sip of my whiskey and said “ You know life is a a little boat in a vast endless eternal ocean , their is no going left or right , backward’s or forwards , no rewind , no right no wrong . Just you and the endless ocean . I use to think many times what are the decision’s that got me to this point in life . Where they the right ones or the wrong ones and at the end i get no answers.”

Sid was busy stirring up the mutton and the pulao rice he was cooking for me . “ You want a massage girl i can get her here , you can loosen up , all this philosophical talk is very heavy on the soul .” I smiled “ No yaar as it is i have fucked a babe in every country i visited during my travelthon , let me give the chicks in Hong Kong a break .” I strolled around his kitchen and got hold of a Can of Rajneegandha Pan Masala , atet popping a few spoon’s i said” Every one is going though their own biopic and journey .It alway’s seems that your story is the most important , because it is unfolding for you . But actually everyone is fighting their own battles .The rich the poor black for white and everyone is a hero of their story .” We sat down for dinner and gobbled up the mutton .” I mean just because i have money doesn’t mean i don’t have problems . Imagine if i am fighting to protect my limited wealth , what must the Ambani’s , Buffet’s and Gates of this world must be going through to protect their million’s “ Sidu nodded as if to agree . I looked up at a painting on his wall and then strolled around to the dining table to light up a cigarette “ You know Tina Ambani even haggles with the guy who comes to her home to sell vacuum cleaners . She ask’s them to give her a discount ,I mean she can buy the company that makes the vacuum cleaner , but no one likes to be taken for a rid or be ripped off everybody wants to show that they are smart enough to get a good bargain. Just because you are a billionaire doesn’t mean you will just throw your money around .”

It was getting late and Sid was tired , i had a great dinner and wished him all the best . We promised to meet the day after and that was the end of my first day in Hong Kong.

Posted by Anuj Tikku 09:04 Archived in Hong Kong Tagged hong kong Comments (0)

Anesenyo Korea

south Korea

So my journey around Korea is coming to an end . I am booked for my trip to Hong Kong tomorrow where i will meet some old friends from my school Christ’s College and my dear friend Siddhart Moudgil . Seoul and south korea has been a fascinating experience . Meeting Hyun after 25 years and then my 10 day road trip around the country . I found the korean’s a cultured lot , with a great sense of aesthetic , technology and art . They are a bit shy though , as i experienced on the beaches of Bosan , even when one has to bathe in the sea , one must wear beachwear . I was surprised that my driver was so shocked when he saw me jumping into the sea with just my underwear on.

It is a country with a deep rooted buddhist belief’s and a culture of tolerance . Seoul remind’s me of New York and i took many a walks down town with Hyun to explore it’s infinite beauty . I have had my fill of beef stew with noodle's , kimchi , oysters and the local liquor . I found Nami island a revelation and bathed myself in spirituality of the Bulguk temple . The beauty of the Anapaji pond and flower garden where breathtaking . I went berserk with my camera taking one picture after another capturing the infinite flowers and lilies that i saw . Even dragged one of the korean girls with me into the flower pit to take pictures. The wifi system is so good in the country that i could upload these instantly on my Facebook page and update my friend about my travelthon . My driver whan was a bit unfriendly though , he barely spoke english , so the journey from one town to the other was a bit boring . I dozed off at times and at times enjoyed the rain and the scenery around me . The might Han river the shipyards and ports of Busan .

I like the seafood in Gyenongpo city , as i wandered around the lake chatting with the local korea’s telling them about my travelthon , sharing pictures and showing them my advertisement’s and bollywood movie scenes . Most people were fascinated that i was an indian movie actor and wanted to know more . I savoured the many flavoured ice cream’s that were being sold in the Gyeongju Yangdong village . The thatched roof hut’s which and huge farm land . Then there was the folk dance and flute play that was vibrant and energetic .

The Juknokwon Bamboo garden was a sight to behold , with tall lush green bamboo’s everywhere . Here i got a portrait made of mine from a korean artist . The drawing made me look more oriental then indian . I got it framed and will carry it to india .

The last and the most dramatic was the Media Facade show at the Seokjojeon Hall . This was dramatic show of laser , light , sound and special effects to celebrate the 70th anniversary of reestablished independence of korea. This went instantly on my Facebook page and was liked by all my friend’s .

Posted by Anuj Tikku 02:48 Archived in South Korea Comments (0)

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