Hong Kong Dragonboating & Photo Blog 1

Back from vacation and no time to slowly settle back into the swing of things. Getting thrown back into it is kind of good, because then you don’t have time to feel the vacation withdrawal ;)

Anyways, it was a long three weeks of excitement and relaxation in Asia. It’s hard to even know where to begin! I guess I could begin at … the beginning …

* * *

First Stop: Hong Kong, China

The first week of my vacation was dedicated to watching the Hong Kong Dragonboat Carnival races. I was there to support two teams from Canada who had been working hard for two years to bring back some gold.

This was the granddaddy of all races. The culmination of so many practices, sacrificing late nights out, beer, and time with loved ones, and of other races that had gotten these teams here to the worlds. This was what it had all been for.

Unfortunately, this dragonboat festival was so riddled with unnecessary delays, an inappropriate race course, cheating, and boats crashing into other teams’ boats, that in the end, it seemed like for many paddlers these world championship races had turned into something of a circus.

As a spectator, it was pretty hard to watch.

Throughout all of the tears, anger and frustration that I witnessed, one thing really stuck in my mind. I remember one paddler telling their teammate that it was about the journey, the two years they had been through together to get them to where they were now.

I’m in no position to tell anyone that that is in fact how they should be looking at this. Take away the experience and don’t dwell on the outcome. One could argue: what’s the point in working so hard when life is just gonna throw unfair shit your way and not let you have what you feel you deserve?

Well, I definitely know what that feels like even if I wasn’t a paddler in these races. And all I know is that while it feels unfair and pointless at the moment, looking back, you really do remember the journey and what you had to endure while traveling on that road. That is really where you draw your strength from and where you look to find proof of how mentally indestructible you are.

Aside from all that, the teams still did well and showed their commitment, drive, and love of the sport. So hopefully they will come back in the future to achieve bigger and better things and this whole experience will have been one more worthwhile step towards that goal.

* * *

Aite, so y’all are like: what the heck kind of a vacation blog post is this? Shit, girl, save it for Oprah. Well, truth be told, I didn’t really feel like I was on vacation until I got to Boracay. But here are some photos from my time in Hong Kong for those of you who just wanna get to the pictures :)

Building excitement for the races as soon as we arrive!

Starting the day off right.

The shopping crowd in Mong Kok (bargaining market). Check out the dude with red hair on the right!

Screaming fans of a Korean boy band, 2PM, who were paddling in one of the races.

San Miguel — popular beer in Hong Kong. Had it with my pigeon. (Pigeon photo to come).

View of the harbour from our hotel’s restaurant.

My favourite building — the one shaped like a you-know.

Having noodles and a refreshing lemon iced tea at our favourite lunch spot.

Gloomy skies on one of the race days. The show must go on!

A de-lishous meal.

Eating goose at our lunch spot. (Don’t worry, not Canadian goose ;).

More photos and less talking (I promise) in the next post! Missed you all! Leave me some love! :)

– Cafe <3

* * *

Have you ever been to Hong Kong? What were some memorable experiences from your time there?

If you haven’t, just let me know how your summer’s been going!


47 thoughts on “Hong Kong Dragonboating & Photo Blog 1

      • I was 10 when we moved back to Cyprus. My father was born in Shanghai and couldn’t speak English till he was 10 or 11 – only Mandarin :) (why is your blog asking me to login to reply? – something weird going on …

  1. Pingback: The First Time I Paddled in a Dragonboat Race | Your Daily Dose

  2. more beautiful photographs and interesting write-up. so sorry to hear about the lack of good sportsmanship during the dragon boat races – i’m still amazed by those tall apartment buildings! the food from asia always looks delicious!

    • Thanks, David!
      I don’t know that I believe in fate, but I do really believe that you can make everything that happens happen for a reason. As long as you take the lesson out of the bad and use it to better whatever happens in the future, then it doesn’t have to all be a bad experience :)

  3. Pingback: Welcome to the Philippines! (Boracay Photoblog 1) | Your Daily Dose

  4. Hong Kong is such a bustling experience. So busy and so intense. I have always loved spending time in Hong Kong, and it really seems like you had a great time there too. What I like best whenever I am in Hong Kong is just to stroll around in the different neighbourhoods or take a boat out to some of the smaller islands.

    • Busy and intense is a good way to describe it :) I know it’s not a place I could live in, but I really enjoy vacationing there. Taking a boat out sounds like a great time!

  5. Leaving you some love!! :) Glad you had a fun time and home safely – Amazing how the tall buildings on the far bank just to the left of your favourite building look so squashed together!! Might be a bit claustrophobic walking between them!!

  6. Hey Jet Setter! Great pictures! Love the stories. Tell us more! And is that drinking San Miguel WITH tea (makes my bladder hurt just thinking about it) Or is that drinking San Miguel in a coffee cup?

  7. Such fun! I liked the Oparah introspective! But would say it will take a few years to look back and say ‘yeah all about the journey’.

    Great photos…but yet again you made me petty in my jealousy of the wonderful food.

    • Yeah, sometimes it does take awhile, depending on how much “journey” you gotta go through. But then maybe you are even stronger in the end than those who didn’t have to journey as much ;)

      Haha, uh oh, wait until you see my Korea food pics!!

    • Thanks! More photos to come! :)
      It was a great time, I definitely feel lucky to have been able to go away and have such a great experience.

  8. Were you there to support your friend who was in the race or are you just that into dragon boats you don’t care if they’re all strangers? Maybe they were all actually really good but you have become a dragon boat racing snob.

    I don’t think it matters where you go on vacation to or how long it lasts. It’s hard to not have fun. Glad you’re back!

    • LOL what is a dragonboat racing snob?

      I’m not into dragon boating unless I’m supporting someone. It’s seriously not a spectator’s sport, so you need to be invested in a team that’s paddling!

      Thanks for the welcome back wishes, it’s nice to be blogging again! :)

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