Sunday, February 10, 2013

"Pig-Bunnies", "Squatters", & More in My China Trip Wrap Up!

Alright, we've been through India and Macau, so now it's time for the final stops from my trip!  I know my trip feels like it was so long ago, so it's time to wrap things up with a glimpse of China & Hong Kong!
The day after our wonderful and messy trip to Macau we headed from Hong Kong into Shenzhen, China for the busiest part of our business travels (it's pretty typical to fly into Hong Kong and drive into Shenzhen, China since that is the closest airport).  

Now, I know Shenzhen isn't as exciting as Hong Kong but I actually really like the city.  There's a lot of great restaurants, shopping, and I guess I just feel pretty comfortable there.  Even outside the city the landscape is very lush and beautiful, almost tropical. 

We usually spend long days in our overseas office or attend meetings while in Shenzhen but here's a few of the highlight from our time in China. 

First, our trip to the "World Famous" 678 International Club. You can get a fabulous massage, manicure, pedicure, or skin treatment for crazy low prices.  Last time I went I got a 30 minute foot massage for $12 and this time we did foot and shoulder massages for just $30 and it is amazing!!! 

Another highlight, our visit to the Luohu Shopping Plaza (aka the infamous Shenzhen Copy Mall).  The place is known for offering tons of copied/fake goods like handbags, wallets, shoes, electronics, and probably anything else you can think of.  You can also find lots of fun clothes, scarves and other accessories that aren't in the copied/fake realm. 
Whether or not you buy anything, the experience is pretty crazy.  The shop owners will follow you and try to lure you into their stores by saying "lady, lady, handbag? watch?"  Or when you are in a shop they might open what you thought was a wall and it is really a closet full of fake goods or a ladder leading to some secret storage.  The whole thing is just bizarre but I think any tourist/visitor has to experience it.

As for the food in China, it's kind of funny because I always know I can expect three things- Pizza Hut pizza shaped like a flower topped with shrimp & corn, traditional (and delicious!) Dim Sum, and last but not least KFC.  KFC is surprisingly very popular in China and when we get it, it always happens to be at a time when I just want some fried & greasy American food.

A new food highlight this time was "Pig Bunnies"- and it is not what you might be thinking.  My coworkers nicknamed these steamed buns "Pig Bunnies" since they look like a little piggy with bunny ears.  Our overseas coworkers always order them since they know we get a kick out of their cute look.  They even had teapots this time, ha!!!

Lastly, no trip to China is complete without a "squatter" encounter.  Toilets in public restrooms in China are not like Western toilets, they are on the floor and you have to pretty much squat down to use them- hence the nickname "squatters".  Thankfully at our hotels, offices, and nicer restaurants we have Western toilets but there's always a few times when you have to squat (while trying not to think about the gross floor or peeing on yourself).
Hmmm, Alex pointed out that the "squatter" shares a similar look to our new Domsjo sink... coincidence? Just hope I don't catch Alex ever using it for a bathroom in the morning...shutter.  That lovely visual wraps up the last of Shenzhen, let's move onto the last day of our trip!

When we finished up the last of our business meetings in China, we headed back to Hong Kong for one night before flying home in the morning.  Our drive to the hotel included getting pulled over by the Hong Kong police.  Our driver didn't have his seat belt on, tisk-tisk! 
Not gonna lie though, when the cop signaled us to pull over a scene from Taken or some kind of kidnap foreigners kind of movie came to mind... I blame my dad for making me paranoid while travelling internationally though (hope you like your shout out dad, hehe!).

Anyway, no kidnapping occurred and we settled into our hotel.  Finally with some downtime, we go to enjoy lunch outside with a beautiful view of Kowloon Bay.

After lunch, I did some wandering around so I could take in the sights around Hong Kong...

As the sunset and the lights came on across Kowloon Bay, I did some people watching and took a few more pics while sipping a Starbucks ...

I took one last video to share as well...

We ended the day with dinner at The Pawn and a visit to the Len Kwai Fong district which is a pedestrian street lined with restaurants and bars.  It seems like folks from all over the world come to Len Kwai Fong, it's awesome for people watching or listening (so many languages and accents!).
Our trip officially came to end end the next morning.  We got up bright and early to hop a flight to Tokyo then it was non-stop to Minneapolis. 

As always, I remain so, so, so thankful for these experiences. The trips go by in a flash, but I feel like I grow a lot from them, personally and professionally.  It's all in my behind me now, but these gals along with a few more teammates capture the people that make up a lot of my memories from this trip.

I can only hope I get to return to Hong Kong again to see the sunset over Kowloon Bay...

... Only because Alex finally promised that he would meet me at the end of a work trip so we can see Hong Kong & Macau together.  Keeping my fingers crossed!


  1. Squat toilets! I managed to make it through my first trip to Nepal without using one, but my second trip? Not so lucky - I've had a couple of run-in's. Not my favorite AT ALL.

    1. Ha, I know squatters are the WORST! I always dread them even more if I have high heels on, makes me nervous I will tip over or something and fall in, YUCK!


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