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More Hong Kong

September 6, 2011
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We didn’t have much of an expectation for Hong Kong as we set out to explore.

We merely wanted to see what there was to see.  While there were plenty of sights, they were in retrospect, not the sights one anticipates when touring one of the world’s most expensive cities.

Hong Kong is more chaotic than Tokyo by a wide margin.  The shops (away from the central business district) had a sense of squalor about them reminiscent of Taiwan.

There’s something a tad incongrous about a Mercedes parked in front of a man on a sewing machine.

Hong Kong was several times crustier than the scruffiest districts of Singapore.

There is vice here.

It is distinctly Asian to have a preoccupation with sex (Tokyo has the highest rate of pornography per capita  of any city in the world, for example), yet blame foreigners for transgressions of the flesh.

An odd thing, this.

Meanwhile, the Chinese government is busy obliterating every remnant of the British Empire in an effort to nationalize the city.  What they want is a financial center for China first and Asia second.  As westerners, we’re a distant third.

It strikes me as poor judgement to eradicate nearly two centuries of history, an asset which would bring in tourist $$ and cement Hong Kong’s place on the world stage for many years to come. Alas, this is not the Chinese way, and should be a lesson for us in future dealings with China.  They wish for the world to bend to their will.

I’d like to say that I enjoyed myself in Hong Kong, but that really wasn’t the case.  It had charms, but its focus was clearly inward.

Will we be back?  On business, perhaps, but not for pleasure.  There are more interesting and inviting places on this planet; we will leave Hong Kong to the Chinese, as is clearly their preference.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. September 6, 2011 1:40 am

    Hong Kong has always been portrayed as much m ore atrtractive than that city you show. Wikileaks reports the drive is on the buy gold and make the Yuan the reserve currency.

    • dangerboyandpixie permalink*
      September 6, 2011 4:36 am

      I bought quite a bit of gold in July; did well.

      The Yuan cannot be a reserve currency until it is delinked to the dollar. It’s actually not the Yuan; its the Renminbi. De-linkage occurs the day Taiwan and China merge to be come one nation. It’s not far off.

  2. conchscooter permalink
    September 6, 2011 1:04 pm

    I am not enamoured of the East but I try to seek accurate sources for what little I know, in this instance the Wall Street Journal.

    “Renminbi — abbreviated RMB — is the formal term most often used by Chinese officialdom to refer to the currency. (It’s also nice to drop into conversations here and there though to impress the boss.) Literally, it means “People’s Currency.” But it’s a too stuffy for everyday use. “No one says RMB,” Cheng Li, a senior fellow at Brookings told MarketBeat.

    It seems like there’s not a really good equivalent to renminbi in American English, maybe something like “legal U.S. tender.” Yuan is renminbi, just like the dollar is legal U.S. tender — but so are dimes, nickels and quarters.

    The yuan is the actual unit. It’s pretty much the equivalent to “dollar.” It’s more likely to be used in everyday interactions.”

    I seek neither to impress the boss or to be stuffy. As to when the RMB becomes the reserve currency I have not been endowed with second sight. However I did buy gold well before last July and did proportionately better than those that did.

    • dangerboyandpixie permalink*
      September 6, 2011 2:51 pm

      The Chinese prefer RMB when dealing with the West, as the Yuan is a reminder that it is close to the Yen and Won – Japan and Korea, respectively. I use Reuters for most of my asian news feeds.

      SE Asia and the Pacific are not China, and can be quite nice. I’m liking it!

  3. September 6, 2011 3:13 pm

    Thanks for sharing your life with us.

    • dangerboyandpixie permalink*
      September 6, 2011 11:28 pm

      Doug!

      Glad you like it!

      I’ve been remiss – need to go out tonight and knock off some more photos. Been occupied with Pauline’s health and the desire to wrench on the latest motorcycle.

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