December 9

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Today was a low key day.  Again, we have overcast skies, but no forecast for rain, and steady about 21 degrees, so light jackets in the morning, and no jackets by afternoon.

This morning, Emily had convinced (conned) Danny into taking them to the park down below our hotel.  The park has a kidís playground area, but is also right next to the Hong Kong Botanical Park, so there are live animals too.

As you can see by the happy, smiling faces, they had a great time.

While they were off doing their thing, I dropped off the laundry, then headed down into the city for some mommy-time.  I wandered around, did a little shopping (sshhh...some Christmas shopping at Marks n Sparks) and then headed back up towards the escalator.  I had emailed to see if the girls wanted to come down and meet for some lunch, and got a reply that what they wanted was pizza, AGAIN!

Instead of conceding to their request that I order it in at the hotel, I had them meet me at Soho, a hip trendy area of Hong Kong, aimed squarely at tourists.  Now, normally we avoid this like the plague, but I had no desire to be cooped up in the hotel, and the kids were adamant about pizza.  So, we ventured into a place called Fat Angeloís that had pizza on the menu, and we actually had a great meal.  It was bit like an East Side Marioís or something.  The kids had their individual pizzas, were given crayons and a Christmas themed placemat to colour and while Danny ordered spaghetti and meatballs, I had roasted chicken.  The food was really good, but also really expensive relative to other choices in Hong Kong.

This afternoon was low-key.  Danny took Emily with him on the bus and went for a fitting on the 17 new suits heís ordered (not really sure how many, but Iím guessing a lot!) and Stephy and I stayed back.  Given that she and I were up at 5:00am again, I was hoping sheíd nap, but it never happened.  She did relax, though, so I was hopeful that dinner would be ok, because were to go to Pok Heiís house for a big family dinner.  God knows how much I love those big dinners to begin with, add a sleepy cranky 5 yr old and Iím dreading it.

We hopped in a cab in what should have been lots of time, only to have the cabbie tell us that because there is a horse race on tonight, combined with all the extra people in town for the East Asian Games, the traffic was a nightmare.  It took us more than twice as long as usual, and we were very glad that taxi rates in Hong Kong are cheap or weíd have gone broke watching the meter tick as we were stuck in traffic.

We arrived at Pok Heiís house to find many people there already.  Dannyís mother and aunt, as well as Pok Heiís sisters, and a cousin also visiting from Montreal, and her mom.  It was noisy but pleasant.  We had hairy crab for dinner (lovely, fatty, only available for a very short time) with some special bbq goose that is sold very near their home.  The food was good, but I got to eat very little because Stephanie had transferred into sucky tired mode by that point.  Everybody was pushing at her (and me) to have her just sit and eat but the child wanted me and wasnít going to be deterred.  So, I sat at a separate table with Emily and Stephanie and fed them while everyone else ate at the other table.

We hopped in a taxi to get back shortly after 10:00pm, tired and ready for bed.  I quickly fed the girls something, since they ate very little at Pok Heiís house, and they were in the bed very shortly thereafter.

Tomorrow is to be 23 and nothing but sunshine, so I think weíre Disney-bound....stay tuned.