December 27

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Today is yet another cloudy, dull day in Hong Kong.  Sadly that seems to have been the case for most of our time here this year.  Not cold by your standards, like between 15 and 20 most days, but cool and dull.

We headed out in the morning just to get out.  We really are in vacation mode these days.  We get up late-ish (depending mostly upon Stephanie, who wakes the whole family as soon as sheís up) and we head out for some leisurely wandering/shopping.  Today we didnít find much at all, so we came back to the hotel after not too long.

The kids have been bugging Danny to take them to see Alvin and the Chipmunks 2.  Every second double-decker bus and every bus stop and half the trams in the city have advertising all over them for this movie and it opened on December 24th.  So, as soon as Emily saw it was a bit cloudy, she asked if she could see the movie today.  Danny agreed to take them and they headed out on the subway to a huge shopping complex called Elements.

Unfortunately, when they got there, the movie was sold out.  One cool thing they do here is that you actually buy a ticket for an assigned seat at a movie theatre!!  No more getting there early just to get a good seat.  The kids were pretty disappointed and Danny bought tickets for tomorrow instead to appease them. 

Then, the cool thing happened.  Truly cool, both literally and figuratively!  They found an ice skating rink right inside the mall.  Shades of West Edmonton only WAY grander.  This mall is full of Gucci, LV, Ferragamo, Tiffany, Cartier, etc., and a SKATING RINK. 

What is really neat is that they have rental skates, too, because virtually nobody in this tropical country has their own skates.  Danny paid, the kids had their skates, and they had a marvellous time!!!

I couldnít believe it when Danny emailed me a picture to show me what they were doing in lieu of the movie!!  I hopped on the subway and went to meet them.  They skated right up until it closed at 7pm and then the real fun began for me.

Ever since we got here, Iíve been wanting to go out at night and have some serious street food.  Night street food.  Not an easy thing to get to do with two small kids whose normal bedtime is 8:30, but tonight they are wound right up from skating and with the promise of the movie tomorrow, they are really feeling cooperative.

We headed over to the Temple Street night market area.  During the day this area is just another street vendor market, but after dark it turns into a crazy busy, outdoor food area, with everything and anything cooked right there on the street.  As long as you dare, you can find most anything to eat.

We sat down at one of the outdoor tables and ordered food.  Lots of food.  Food that was still alive in the buckets next to the table.  As you can see, we had jumbo scampi, fresh shrimps, and a lamb hot pot dish.  The food was absolutely marvellous.  In case youíre wondering, though, I drank beer, for stomach safety purposes!!!  You know youíre not in Kansas any more when they hand you a roll of toilet paper for napkins and you need beer to avoid tummy troubles.

The food was delicious, hot and lovely.  Iím already announcing to the kids and Danny that weíre coming back for another round before we leave Hong Kong in a few days.  Truly, one of the best meals Iíve had since arriving in Hong Kong (despite all the fancy restaurant meals and home cooked goodness).

You should try it some time......or maybe not!  J