Swiss contingent

On Thursday I spent the day meeting my god brother.  He is over visiting fromSwitzerland. Apparently it snows a lot there (when I went it was really hot).

He is still really little – a few months old. I am told that we’ll have something even smaller at our house in a few weeks time.

I was very good and shook his hand and gave him some toys to play with – all good practice!

It was nice to see my godmother too. She spent lots of time playing with me – cars. My current favourite.

 We also went for a walk and saw a tractor. Tractors are a big favourite too – particularly since I got a singing John Deere for Christmas.

Hopefully we’ll see them all again soon.

Oh Stowe Good

Happy belated New Year!!!

I spent the end of 2015 and the start of ’16 at my grandparents. On New Year’s Day we went for a ‘walk’ at Stowe. As well as the school it’s an enormous estate complete with sunken gardens, lakes and loads of monuments.

It is so big that we hired a buggy due to the big M having a baby in her tummy. It was well fun! I got to drive a little bit (shhhh don’t tell the national trust man). It meant that we got to see a large chunk of the gardens and be home in time for lunch!


  

Travelling etiquette 

One of the first guide books said that when on one’s holidays it is imperative to mix one’s down time with cultural pursuits. Consequently, we went for lunch in Eivissa, the main town in Ibiza.

After a spectacular lunch of beef carpaccio, salmon tartare and prawns in garlic oil we ventured up hill into the old town, Dalt Villa; to enjoy the view: the perfect blend of relaxing and sightseeing!


 

Day of the biscuits

In Hong Kong the locals had the proclivity to take my photo – in Ibiza instead of a preoccupation with portraiture it seems there is an obsession with biscuit feeding.

Yesterday I was given an inordinate number of biscuits to munch on throughout the day.

At breakfast time I shared some digestives with Sampson and Fe-Fe, then for 11sies gran-gran gave me her biscuit that came with her coffee, as did the big d. After lunch we met two ladies sitting on a bench and they gave me a couple of their special biscuits.
 Then walking home on the beach we met a Spanish lady with her two children. I spent some time playing with the younger boy and his mum let me have one of his biscuits.


Once at home I raided the biscuit tin and managed to steal a couple before anyone noticed!

It was ok though as I still ate all of my supper.

Journey home

The journey home could have been a nightmare, but ended up ok. We had to get up really early and missed breakfast, which was sad as I was looking forward to my customary croissant and cheese. We caught a taxi to the airport and watched the sunrise over Hong Kong.


The first flight was busy being a commuter flight to Beijing but we were seated in the bulkhead row so had enough space.

Once at Beijing we had a small issue in that  my pushchair failed to arrive. We waited for AGES. It was ironic as we didn’t use it the entire trip. Eventually we gave up as we had our connection to make. There was a slight misunderstanding between us and the official airport lady at the gate who thought we were on an earlier flight than we were so we managed to be fast tracked through the airport on false pretenses bypassing massive queues… Ssshhh don’t tell anyone! I then spent a happy hour at the play area (the same one as the week before) before boarding our next plane.

 

The big M was not amused as they did not give us the bulkhead seats nor did they give me my own seat so the three of us were hemmed into two seats next to other people (poor them!). However, after a lot of huffing and puffing and sweet talking to the man next to her she managed to procure us our own row. This was perfect as unlike on the bulkhead aisle we were able to lift the arm rests and I could stretch out and sleep, which is exactly what I did for a few hours.

After 11 hours we arrived at Heathrow and again the pushchair was conspicuously missing at the gate. A very unhelpful woman was exceedingly unhelpful about what to do but a nice man (coincidentally the guy that checked us in the week before) helped and we eventually tracked the pushchair to the hold. So all was fine.

We then jumped in the car (which was luckily still where we left it) zoomed home and I was back in my own bed fast asleep by 9pm. Travelling. Simples!

Ups and downs

Today was a day of many ups and downs. First we went down a few floors to breakfast and then back up again to get ready to go out. Once we left the hotel we walked to the upper deck entrance of the Star Ferry and then disembarked onto the raised walkway to Peddar Street. We walked a few blocks and came to the longest covered escalator system in the world. We, of course, travelled up it 800m in distance and 135m in elevation.

 It took us through the mid levels towards the top of the peak. Once at the top, there was really only one direction to go: down. So we chose to wander through the HK botanical and zoological gardens where we saw orangutans, chimps, lemers, birds amongst other creatures.

The exit to the park took us right past the entrance to the Peak tram so with a snap change of plan we decided to jump aboard (managing to circumnavigate the 2 hour or so long queue by the big M giving it her best pathetic pregnant look – to give her her due if worked!). So we chugged our way back up to the top of the peak had a spot of lunch and caught the train down again.

Once back at the hotel we went up to the pool for a swim and then down to the club room for drinks and nibbles.

The biggest down of the day, however, was packing up to go home tomorrow. We’re leaving at the crack of dawn so no yummy breakfast and no morning swim. All very sad indeed. But I’ve had an amazing time and learnt loads. I’ve even mastered some Chinese!

The wheels of the bus

Today we adventured our way to Stanley, a small beachside town on the south side of Hong Kong island by bus. On our way to the bus station we passed a tanggu (literally meaning ‘ceremonial hall drum’) competition. The troop (? Not sure that’s the right word) we saw were amazing!

 After a titchy disagreement about the location of the terminus we boarded a very pleasant air conditioned, double decker (no. 6X) which took us the scenic route round the island via Deep Water Bay and Repulse Bay, both popular beaches. I had a great time looking out of the windows at the passing scenery and even added the word ‘view’ to my vocabulary.


Once at Stanley Village we disembarked and made our way bayside to the string of restaurants lining the front. We chose one with a free outside table in the shade. The food was delish. I had penne pasta in a cream and cheese sauce. Not very Chinese admittedly but the menu was pretty much western food.

After lunch we went shopping round Stanley market and made some great purchases for gifts including a titchy Chinese silk baby grow for my new God-brother and for my as yet unborn bro.

This man wrote my name in Chinese on a plaque for me to put up in my bedroom.

 On the way back to the bus stop we happened upon another super playground so spent a happy half hour or so running amok amongst the slides.

  We then jumped on the express bus (no. 260) back to Central which took us through the Aberdeen tunnel rather than over the top of the peak. We were back in time to grab a quick shower and go to cocktails at The Club Intercontinental for some snackettes before a bedtime dip in the pools.

Last day tomorrow 😢. It’s gone so quickly.

The high life

After another excellent night of sleeping (let’s hope I haven’t jinxed tonight) we ate brekkie in the club lounge surrounded by besuited delegates from the Hicap conference (I fitted right in!!!) and followed it up by a quick swim in the pools. We then made our way across Victoria Harbour via the Star Ferry to Hong Kong Island.



Once at Central we caught a ding-ding (tram) for the bargain price of 40p for 2 adults to Times Square. I really enjoyed sitting on the top deck watching the world go by

And spying on the people sitting next to me  

We followed it up with our third mode of transport for the day – a quick trip on the MTR in order to take the funicular railway up The Peak  to the highest observation point in Hong Kong.


The view from the top was spectacular and we could see our hotel on the other side of the harbour in Kowloon.  If we had a telescope I reckon we could see our room!
 Again I caused quite a stir with people wanting to take my photo. Seriously considering staying here and joining a modelling agency! They all particularly liked me posing by this statue on the viewing platform.  
In the shopping centre  at the top of the peak there was a live, VR game of pacman and loads of promotional bits and pieces dotted around. As you can see I had buckets of fun playing with it all. Sadly I was too little to play the actual game – lucky for you ghosts!

  

I think we’re set for another busy one tomorrow as we’re venturing to Stanley and the beach – a first for the big M and D!

See you then x