if you reached kaykays.com and you see this page, it's not updated anymore. Irish Born Chinese has been moved to irishbornchinese.com.
I can't believe it's 2011, beta site is still running. I'm going to poke to get some feedback.
Thanks to all those who still reads my posts, the forum is still a pain (stupid spammers signing up), there's no way to mark it read-only without turning off the board completely, and I don't feel like upgrading it. I will try to port it at some stage though, so it's still available to those who want to chat on the forum.
Anyway, to end on a bright note, I wish everyone a happy, prosperous and healthy new year.
It's the cheesey craze in Mainland China (amongst those with money anyway). Money spent on weddings over there is just as high as over here!?! What happened to stuff being cheaper in Mainland China?
A company is offering couples to make a video of how they met, proposed, or even just something out of the movies, which basically what it is. It makes the special couple feel like they are movie stars.
I've seen lines of bride and grooms queuing up at Avenue of the Stars in Hong Kong, so they can have their wedding photos taken. And this is in really hot and humid over thirty degree heat! I know taking photos before the couple ties the knot a few months before is the norm over there, I even wrote about it contrasting on the run up to my own wedding .
Do Chinese couples over here as well as 2nd generation Chinese who get married do things differently than traditional Irish and/or Chinese weddings? I definitely did.
(Source: BBC Online)
Sad to see this, space is scarce in HK, so landlords have a full run of jacking up the rents, but firms are considering leaving HK. I wonder if the big developer's who own these buildings are suffering (their stock, I mean). This will dent HK as a financial hub. Read more...
It sold for over £50 mills (62 mills). I know we don't have a Chinese vase in my family's attic down home (since my house doesn't have an attic), so my hopes are not high. Read more...
(Via Irish Independent)
China's known for their noodles, but I was tickled to see that Kistu noodle bars started in Dublin now are spreading in China. It's like a big circle. If the locals are eating their noodles in China, they must be doing something right.
Try saying these little ditties. Didn't say I warn ya, Mandarin is complex (still not as complex as Cantonese though). ;-)
A little thing I made during 1 lovely summer's week spent in Hong Kong. Taken from areas in Causeway Bay, Soho, Hung Hom, Tsim Sha Tsui & The Peak. All that's left is say is ... I <3 HK.
Song: Long Distance Call
Album: It's Never Been Like That
Riding Hong Kong's little-known observation elevator... before I got kicked out! Tough to find a clear day these days as you can see by the haze across the harbour.
Shot with Canon 7D with 70-200mm f/4 + polariser
Track: Briefcase by Tom Rothrock (Collateral soundtrack)
I didn't even know that. Saw it via this Beeb article about "EDF agrees £5.8bn sale of UK networks to Li Ka-Shing".
Not that I like the guy, but wow, he performed at the Royal Albert Hall!
Anyone who's been to Maxim's restaurants would know how yummy the food is (espec when you are away from HK for a particularly long time). Read this article on their efficiency on serving large crowds at the Shanghai world expo, even have a few people who speak other languages there as well to entice people to try their food.
An imperial white jade seal sold for US$12.4 million by Sotheby's in Hong Kong. Read more here.
Japan Airline (JAL)'s air hostess uniforms are quite a collectible, especially on the black market! Interesting video article about it - BBC - Stewardess uniforms become big business in Japan.
A sandstorm covers Beijing in an orange haze, so strange to see these pics when we were recently in Beijing a few months ago, and it was just smoggy haze though.
Anyone else tried Hakka Noodles in Belfast, this reviewer loves it. I wonder is it to do with Hakka food or is it just a name, as I noticed that it's down as Japanese restaurant in some of the search results.
Also found The Irish Times with a review on ML Szechuan Chinese Restaurant in Dublin.
...was worn by Ann Ling, now Lady Oxmantown, when she got married in 2004 to Patrick Lord Oxmantown
Made of flaming red silk with a huge flying phoenix embroidered in coloured threads, it is one of the highlights of a fashion exhibition celebrating the links between Ireland and China, part of Dublin City Council’s Chinese New Year festival.
(Source: Irish Times)
If you want to see an image of the red dress, you can find it here. It is very beautiful and vibrant.
It's great to see kungfu being taught to kids to keep them off the streets, keep them fit and enjoying themselves. Good vid article by the Beeb, check it out....
A 'National Karaoke Content Management System, or “black box” as it is more popularly known' is installed in karaoke bars in Chongqing, one of the many cities and towns targeted to track down illegal music, pornography videos and any rallying songs against the State being played. So much for people having a good time.
(Source: Irish Times)
Civil servants in South Korea were told to go home today (Wed), to urge them to go home, the building lights will be switched off (prob already off by now). They are planning to do this every month. Thing is, childcare cost it pretty pricey. They are even giving away gift vouchers to those officials who have more than one child.
(Source: BBC News)
The initial suspect who was arrested has been released, but they arrested a second suspect. There were no details on why they suspected this second person, I just hope they really caught the person doing these terrible things and that there will be no copy-cats after these incidents.
(Source: BBC News)
UPDATE: Should have checked up The HK Standard, and they have some more details about the recent attack and arrests.
I posted this incident before, but the BBC News has a video of the kid with chopstick up his nose, it's not that graphic, but shows how lucky the couple were. Although I'm a bit wary that they let the kid play with an adaptor, you'll see it at the end of the video.
...just because he wanted to be with his girlfriend a little bit longer by going through the security barrier while the security guard stepped away. Given that Newark is the hub of connection flights, it had a big knock-on effect when the airport's terminal was shutdown. The man will face a fine of up to US$500.
(Source: Yahoo news)
A fellow IBC member made a cool vid on lights of Mongkok, check it out:-
A little tribute to my neighbourhood of Mong Kok, the place of perpetual light. (And yes, the occasional acid-from-above).
Mong Kok literally translates into 'busy corner' and is one of the most crowded areas of the city. I mean, Hong Kong is already crowded enough...
Shot with the Harinezumi and extreme macro resulting in some serious bokeh-lovin'. No effects added!
Track 'Your Hand in Mine' by Explosions in the Sky.
One of the dirtiest habits still prevalent in China is spitting, ach... but serial spitters will be evicted from public housing, is this a bit too much? Won't fines suffice like in Hong Kong.
Throwing away fruit peel, spitting out chewing gum, gambling and urinating in public are also on the forbidden list, and the plan is modelled on a similar scheme in nearby Hong Kong.
I don't think kicking people out of their homes would help the situation. Still it's one of the many dirty habits that people from Mainland China should move away from.
(Source: Irish Times)
I remember my mom telling me not to run around when I have a lolly in my mouth when I was a kid, but I've never (or remember) putting something like a chopstick up my nose! This toddler in China did and fell, ouch indeed! It was "4mm" into the brain, but it ended happily as the chopstick was removed and the baby is making full recovery.
(Source: Irish Independent)
When we were in Beijing in November, we got stuck in a plane at Beijing airport because of the unseasonal early snowfall. Now, it's a walk in the park for 'em. And Ireland and UK can't handle snow and ice and now there's a grit war, and household salt sales has increased.
2010 already! Happy new year, health and goodwill to all. It's nice 'n' sunny with snow everywhere, a perfect winter's day.
Man, so much work has gone into this bento box! Check it out here (there's even a "Doraemon" rice ball, I still call it "Ding Dong" though.)
... or in Japanese, they are called "rekijo". Interesting fad, and computer gaming plays a role as well in peaking girls interest in history. Check the video at:- http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8433280.stm
(Source: BBC News)
As someone, female, who can parallel park (unlike some people), I found this news slightly annoying. A shopping centre in China has built a women-only carpark, painted pink and purple, and wait for it.... spaces which are three feet wider. Stop with the stereotypes...
According to The Irish Times article, 40% of applications made by Chinese students applying to studying here in uni are rejected. Even if they were accepted by the colleges they applied for. I wonder what the reasoning behind this is, it definitely can't be budget reasons as foreign students pay through the roof to study here.
(Source: The Irish Times)
Chinese dramas are as addictive as any soaps in the West, but the depiction of "Snail House" was too close to home, so much so, that it's banned. It's a
[...] show featuring shady communist officials, their mistresses and dodgy financial dealings [...]
(Source: Irish Independent)
I love garlic, and I was curious when I saw a video on BBC News online about prices of garlic may increase as the price of garlic in China has tripled in eight months! A knock-on effect will ripple its way over here... *sigh, damn it, now it's a luxury item.
According to The Indo, a third of Irish employers wants students to learn Mandarin.
UPDATE: Just read in The Irish Times on the strong emphasis of new languages to be taught in second level, especially Mandarin.
According to the article from The Irish Times, Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology is partnered with Nanchang University in China, and offer these joint programmes:
accountancy, hospitality and tourism, nursing, business and computing
(Source: Irish Times)
Ads from Wanchai Ferry are appearing more and more on television, billboards, etc. I wonder if they are as good as they say they are? I wonder if many Chinese people tried if out yet?
Here are videos of the ads found online. It's definitely cheesy.
Better than the Uncle Ben ads and I agree with BBCB. ( >-<; )
Yikes, only just got back from HK on Saturday, and saw this news just now. Here's some footage from Beeb online. Not that I take the bus whilst I was there, more KCR and MTR, but still scary all the same.
Now this is ridiculous, an apartment for $57 million in Hong Kong. Property prices are going up, oh noes, have they not learned from 1997 and recent property fiasco?
Some footage from BBC - http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8257960.stm
Hope my friends who are in HK for a few days are not too affected by it, as in, there's enough clear days for them to sightsee and not get stuck in a hotel.
Aside from China coming out of recession earlier than most countries, seems like HK has also come out of it. Media here has been speculating that Ireland will take another year before we can get back on our feet.
This poor girl had to grow up with the name Chicken dung. Seriously, at least she is of age to change it legally to something less embarrassing. Chinese parents, what are ye like?
...for some staff at Keihin Electric Express Railway. How? By use of computer to scan workers faces. At least we know if someone is having a pissy time at work, now they are forced to smile, enough to make anyone crAzy!!
(Source: The Telegraph)
Mongkok seems dangerous, what with acid bottles dropped intentionally from a building that's severely injured people to accidental stuff like speakers dropping from a shop seriously injuring a passerby.
The acid attack:
Last night's attack, the third in six months, injured 24 people, including a four-year-old girl, who all suffered burns to their limbs and faces.
The speaker accident:
The speaker, used by nearby retail outlets to promote business, measured one foot by three.
Maybe you shouldn't look up and just walk very fast in uncovered areas.
I know in some council flats in Hong Kong, you hear stories about glass bottles, rubbish, and even televisions being tossed out the window, given that many flats in Hong Kong are over 20 odd stories high, I would hesitate to think what some of the items would do to people if they were hit by the falling debris.
(Source: The Hong Kong Standard)
I've talked about materialism in HK, this is another one of their obsessions, slim and beauty. Got this off a friend in Facebook, and from his friends comments, we all agree that it's a bad ad, and just goes to show how shallow HKers are.
An incident where a Chinese translator for Garda investigators was later found out to be an illegal immigrant raises some serious concerns about current loopholes in Garda regulations in hiring foreign translators. I thought they would have vetted translators anyway.
A Thai relative visiting her sister and husband did not even get a chance to talk/see them was detained and deported at Dublin airport, all because she said she was here to "mind a child". She had broken English, and the Gardaí was suspicious of her intentions here.
The family she is visiting claims that she is here to babysit their daughter while they work their full-time jobs. The sister is a citizen of Ireland, and was not allowed to talk to her sister.
I have relatives coming to visit us over the years, and some have broken English as well, their issue mainly has been immigration at Heathrow, and seem to be alright when they go through Shannon. I would be horrified if any of my relatives were turned back, and would be outraged like this family. They have done nothing wrong, the girl who was deported has never overstayed her holiday visa and never worked, earned a wage. I think Dublin airport should have at least brought in a translator and confirmed the stories on both ends.
(via Irish Independent)
The cyber homeless, where each person pays $500 a month for a tiny cubicle in an internet cafe.
The cheaters included were parents and teachers. One particular setup had a parent pay a student to scan exam questions to him, he had nine teachers on standby to answer the questions before sending it back to his son. Of course, the ones that are caught are sent to jail. Read more...
The big 4 companies (Sony BMG, Universal, Warner and EMI) are offering free music to China with Google to discourage illegal downloads. Read more...
(Source: Irish Times)
Heads up that my site will be down sometime in the next 72 hours (or so). Hopefully it'll be faster on the new server, and nothing will break.
I know it's candy in American terms, as you'll see from the article, but it's super cool, right?
This is probably more popular than the sushi cake which I think looks yummy. People who don't like fish (you know who your are), or younger kids, you might think otherwise. ( u )
The film industry in China is still gaining momentum, and the lure of Hong Kong film producers to Mainland has been ramping up. Although foreign film studios from Hollywood, for example, are having problems with restrictions such as China's policy on having quotas on foreign movies released with exception to foreign-Chinese produced films.
Yowsers, these grannies are well fit. Tile breaking and everything, something you wouldn't thing your granny would do!
Check it out:- http://tinyurl.com/dfjtac
Being following Sweet Mandarin on Twitter for a bit now. It's really interesting how Lisa Tse is promoting Chinese cooking and the restaurant (also of same name). She just had a twitter event of teaching people to cook today via Twitter. What a refreshing approach.
The new generation seems to employ hard work (as always) and fun also. I hope to see more of that around, but it seems this new age of second generation restauranteurs are integrating and embracing technology in their business workflow, and it is working so far for them. Imagine, tweeting your order, or booking a table via your iPhone. Handy, ain't it. It's just a great feeling to see and hear success stories like this which includes catering services with new technologies. Both which crosses over my history and what I currently do. By the way, I'm not a restauranteur, my parents and my brother are. I'm a tecchie geek through and through, but was brought up amidst the hustle and bustle of the kitchen and floor of the restaurant. Aah, the memories, but let's look to the future. Great job, Sweet Mandarin! \\( *v^ )//
All the dire news everywhere in the local media, last I want to see is another person talking about local Irish driving up North for their shopping. And yet, here it is. Everyone is affected in the town he went to, Castleblaney. They even dropped into a Chinese and to their dismay, same story, no customers.
In Castleblaney's Chinese restaurant – again, empty apart from us – the poor waitress looked distraught when we declined starters and a second portion of rice, and said no to dessert. We were then treated to yet another long and unsolicited rant about the "------- euro".
Now, Ireland needs something positive. Obama rallied a great speech, we need Cowen to do something like that. Everyone is affected, for sure, but we need to pull together and get through this like in 1987. We should treat this as a legacy for our children and their children, that we did do something instead of being cynical of our government, blaming and finger-pointing, and hold strikes left, right and centre.
.. friendly neighbourhood spiderman. Yup, Spiderman scaled the Cheung Kong centre in HK. He was highlighting global warming, and according to the article, he's previous encounter with the building was in June 2005.
Great job capturing on this feat, Edwin! :)
Great to see that the Gardaí are getting multi-ethnic, although I am pretty sure I mentioned this before when there was a drive to recruit non-nationals into the force.
(Source: Irish Independent online)
You've seen him on television, well, I did anyway. Ken Hom is planning to open a restaurant in Dublin and it's going to be at the top end no doubt, given that it's at the Merrion. Although he did say in that article that everything will be under 50.
The drive to make Italians eat Italian, which was described by the Left and leading chefs as gastronomic racism, began in the town of Lucca this week, where the council banned any new ethnic food outlets from opening within the ancient city walls.
Fantastic, isn't it? Anyone who loves food, would find this very over the top. I would support them if they banned fast food, actually, the article did not say anything about Mc Donald's, Burger King and so on. I suppose these fast food restaurants are not really ethnic, loop hole, or not wanting to piss-off big corporate investors?
Oh, this is the funny part, when Minister of Agriculture was asked on his support for this he said after asked "if he had ever eaten a kebab":
“No – and I defy anyone to prove the contrary. I prefer the dishes of my native Veneto. I even refuse to eat pineapple.”
So, I thought Irish people were bad, even though they have improved and are more adventurous. There was an intern (in first company I worked for, big US corporate company) from Kerry and he would not eat anything bar potatoes and chicken. He would not even touch pineapple, even though he never tried it before. So one day, we snuck some in his lunch and he said what it was, and we made up something, he ate it and loved it.
Food is food, everybody, even in Italy, people will eat their own ethnic food, but don't stop them eating other ethnic dishes. Life is too short to be ignorant of one's little pleasures.
(Source: Times online)
Young Chinese from smaller towns and villages still face withering parental pressure to marry in their early 20s, and some pay good money to hire the right type to bring home and please anxious parents, at least for a few vacation days.
(Source: Irish Times online)
Toughness of an ox needed to brave new year carnival. See, I wasn't kidding about the weather in my earlier post.
Some piccies from BBC News online of Lunar New Year celebrations.
"Gung hai fat choi", as most of us would say. I'm heading down home for a Lunar New Year dinner today. Now I have to remember to brink my "Lai sees" or red packets (stuffed with money) to my siblings and cousins.
So I attended The Silk and Bamboo Trio's concert at the Hugh Lane Gallery and I enjoyed it immensely. The happy and joyous sounds of the Chinese instruments consisting of traditional wind and stringed instruments to romantic and celebratory tunes left me breathless at times. In my mind, it was bringing up images of old China, images I would have seen on t.v., pictures from books. It was definitely a great experience to listen to these three musicians, no amps or anything. The room filled up fast. With a quick glance, around a half dozen or so of Asians were amongst the many Irish attending the concert.
Content with the concert, we headed to the green by The Church beside the Jervis centre. It was getting cold, so we headed into The Church for a bite to eat, and the wind and rain began with gusto. Therefore we pretty much missed the opening ceremony, lion dance and all. Although after our lunch and some drinks, we headed outside, and caught the Silk and Bamboo Trio again, but playing outdoors on stage did not sound as good as it was in the Hugh Lane.
The stands around the area were few, and half were empty. The Asian Market was prominent, another stand selling fans, Western Union giving away freebies, Meteor and another on Living in Ireland. No food stalls or anything. Very disappointing.
Anyway, I felt overall, the concert was fantastic, the carnival, shall I say, a wash-out.
[UPDATE] RTE News mentioned it - Chinese welcome in Year of the Ox, tepid mention at that.
Like many, she came to improve her English language, then fell in love with Ireland. She even opened a restaurant by the coast in Bettystown.
(Source: Irish Independent online)
It's Jackie Chan as Mr Miyagi. I would like to re-iterate, HK stars plus Hollywood does not equal good movie. It really reinforces the stereotypes of how people in the West view these types of roles played by talented Chinese actors and actresses. No more crappy Hollywood roles, pur-lease, for the sake of what happy memories we have, no more!
On Saturday night (10th January), the bus driver of the 54A (Tallaght to Eden Quay) route was assaulted by two people who wanted to get off early before a stop.
After the driver told them to wait he was spat at. When he stopped the bus and left his cabin to go and contact gardai he was viciously attacked as the row spilled onto the street.
Two men who were upstairs in the bus, went to help the driver. One of the assailants jumped back on the bus and drove it at a slow speed for a very short distance and jumped out of the bus. Then one of the men helping the bus driver jumped on the bus and managed to stop it.
The gardaí arrived and arrested those involved. The latest on this incident, one of the men has been charged with assault.
(Source: Irish Independent Online)
HK received five sturgeons in celebrations of the Olympics, but three died and the two others are not faring well, and are to be returned to China. The five sturgeons were in the care of Hong Kong Ocean Park. Beijing even presented another five to HK after an apology from HK's leader. I've been to Ocean Park, the aquarium is a nice change from the humid outdoors of HK's summer time. It's a pity that care in HK was not enough to keep some of the precious breed alive. Maybe I would get a glimpse next time I'm in HK.
Source: BBC News online (HK returns sick sturgeon to China)
Well, I did not realise that the forum feed was broken as the side links in the main page was fine. I was adding the forum feed to my Facebook profile and I realised it hasn't be automatically updated since August!?!
Now the tecchie part, for those interested... Anyhow, after some help from my hubby, we suss that Python2.4 was b0rked on my account on the remote server. Ran latest virtualenv and installed Python2.4, Elementtree and SQLAlchemy. There were some migration issues that were ironed out re. SQLAlchemy. Once that was done, all was hunky dory again. I'll have to keep an eye on it the next couple of days.
So apologies for those who think that nothing is happening, it's cos the forum feed was broken and I did not realise for a long time.
It's 2009, happy new year to one and all! No new year's resolution for me, I'm just putting my head down and working like a maniac on my personal projects. Ok, maybe that is my resolution! o.O
It's the end of the year already, wow. I just want to wish one and all the very best this Christmas and New Year's.
That's what the pilot told management who (with his co-pilot) tried to take off on the taxiway instead of the runway in Hong Kong International airport. Suffice to say, the two pilots are no longer employed.
HK$1 wonton noodles, that's how much the current crisis is affecting the catering sector in Hong Kong. Tasty Congee & Noodle Wantun Shop's dollar offer is pretty enticing and it's their three month promotion to claw back customers who are cooking at home more.
Came across this news article. The teenager is on bail and has not been charged. he was
suspected of placing 2,000 Chinese-language pop songs on a Web site for free downloading.
I did not come across any funky vending machines, like cans of hot food. Not sure what it would taste like though.
While I was in Seattle, I came across this Japanese store called Daiso Japan, just so happens to catch my eye after buying some bus tickets down by the WestLake Centre. All I can say is "OMG!". The music bopping in the background is JPop, you walk into this wonderland of Japanese goods. It's everything and anything you can think off. Sweets, hardware, stationary, sushi making wares, home wares, toys, the lot. Mick found a DVD and magazine storage bags. We bought a couple as it does not take up space. I've been dying to try them out and what's brill about them is that they have carry handles and a clear plastic side to see the titles of your dvds or magazines. I also bought some for my brother's ever growing pile of mangas. A proper example of the bags can be found here (either that or I'll have to take a picture of them).
All I can say is, if Daiso Japan opens here, I'll be in there quite often. So much cute stuff, that I will buy loads and will have an excuse of buying space storage stuff from the store as well. Heehee.
Oh, and guess what, everything is US$1.50 unless otherwise specified. And yes, almost everything is US$1.50. What a bargain!
I'm sure you have heard about the girl who is not pretty enough to appear in front of the world singing her heart out at the Olympics opening ceromony. Now that does not help anyone's confidence, right? It's not even show-business-related, is it? I've posted and written some stuff about Chinese and Materialism, and judgemental, they can be. Sticks and stones... and all that, well, it's just not true. It takes a long time to get rid of that kind of humility psycologically.
...it's the infamous Blue Screen of Death, and it appeared in the Olympics opening ceromony. Someone has it on their Flickr account as well. If only I stayed till the end watching, I know nothing goes perfectly, but it's not everyday you see BSOD on such a big and important event.
I've been so busy with my final project work, I have not being paying much attention to the Olympics like before.
I am getting a bit irked by some stuff in the news with people taking pot shots at China around this big event. It's not suppose to be a political event, is it? People are always spoiling events. Let the atheletes compete, the only thing about that though, I wished there was a non-drugged athelete competition. I'm pretty sure all the atheletes there have some sort of drug or another to take advantage of the competition. Apart from being busy, I think I miss watching it with my father, it's something I won't be able to do ever again. Maybe that is partly why I don't really read up on the Olympics each day. So the countdown to the 08/08/2008 in Beijing. I hope everything goes well for China and all atheletes who are attending this big event.
In light of recent news about massage parlours owned by Chinese gangs which are used as fronts for something more than a massages but again it's the minority that are causing trouble for the legitimate business, as is the case with this Chinese business woman who voiced her anger at these establishments which gives other legit massage parlours a bad name.
Due to increase price of aluminium as well as people moving away from soft drinks, it will be shrunk from 355ml to 350ml.
I've finally gotten around to do it up, download it from here (yes, it's a PDF file, you'll need Adobe Acrobat Reader if you cannot read it). It's just a round up of what's been happening in the forum since March.
Down in Limerick, three Chinese renters demolished part of their accommodation to grow cannibis were busted. I suppose it's a scam that gangs do but we never hear about it, but some still get through. I hope this does not cause too much trouble for Chinese renters.
Hutchinson Telecom's made a deal with Apple to officially launch the iPhone in HK.
Existing subscribers of Hutchison Telecom, a unit of conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa , were expected to be the first users of the iPhone in an early program starting this summer, the South China Morning Post said.
You don't really have to look hard, just head into the Golden Arcade.
At present, Hong Kong people can only buy the iPhone, a mobile phone that allows Internet access and plays music, through unofficial channels often in the form of parallel imports.
Other than that, there are no other details are given by Hutchison Telecom.
Via the Beeb.
In Cantonese, we normally greet each other with "你食咗饭未呀?" (nei sik-zo faan mei aa?), in English it means "Have you eaten (rice) yet?". The reason being, back in history, there was a lot of widespread famine through out China, and Chinese would be very creative on how to make dinner from whatever food they find, including rice. So food is very important to Chinese people, that is why there are so many ways of just cooking chicken alone!
For most of the Chinese, rice is a regularly eaten with other dishes, I say most Chinese as other provinces might be regularly eat noodles instead of rice, for example. What I'm trying to say is that "食饭" (sik faan) basically means dinner. Even now that I reside in Dublin and I don't cook Chinese dinner that often, my mom would as me that question very early on in the phone conversation, and vice-versa.
What's worrying me is the cost of food going through the roof now, especially rice. Normally rice would be the most affordable, but with so much demand, will it going to be a luxury?
All the way in Israel that is. Asian restaurants were protesting on the plans of the government to cut the number of visa to foreign chefs, saying that their aim is to train locally. Sushi and noodles are up next in upcoming strikes. I'm so surprised how popular Asian food is:
"Customers say they are shocked and can't live without South Asian food. [...]
I got annoyed with how some people view that Asian food is easy to cook, well, it is, but I grew up watching, learning and eating family home cooked Chinese dinner, and also the restaurant was a big part of my life when I was young. This irked me a little:
Government lawyer Shoshana Strauss told the Reuters news agency that "everyone can make Chinese food, it's not impossible to learn [...]
There is something missing, the chef/cook also needs to know culturally how food is made, you cannot just learn it, you grew up with it, as mentioned at the end of that article.
It's just like the health inspections, there are different ways of preparing food, you annot assume it's all done the same. Sushi are dealt with differently, you cannot check the temperature when you serve that. What about steak that are done rare? Chow mein are actually noodles, but they come dried, so they need to be soaked in boiling water, and needs to be cooled down. Health inspectors could not get around their head that you cannot just put them straight into the fridge, as the texture will not be as supple. That's just one example. Of course, there are common sense to how things should be stored. But little attention to different cultural ways would ease tension.
I would like to present to all of you, IBC's first newsletter, which could be found at: http://kaykays.com/stuff/newsletter/2008/issue01.pdf
I am hoping to release these newsletters on a quarterly basis, kind of a recap on what's happening in IBC forums and blog.
Ideas and/or contribution to newsletter welcome, contact me via IBC Forum.
Check out the pictures shot by this guy.
But this one from the BBC News site is even better, see for yourself.
According to the census, it is. But what proportions are from Mainland China recently, arrived here for decades etc? It's not detailed enough. You cannot really lump all Chinese together.
My hubby mentioned that he saw this in The Irish Times a few days back, but forgot to tell me. Anyway, he found the link to the news story on RTE. Here it is anyway: RTE video clip - First Chinese graduate called to the bar
Interesting, check this out. What do people think of how the images perceive both cultures? Some maybe stereotypical, but some are true as well, in my opinion.
Really, tell me what you think when you see this quote?
Luo Lei's parents were able to help his campaign by taking the class for a trip on the modern monorail system - which is managed by his father's police department - and by giving him gifts to hand out after his final speech.
Cheng Cheng ensured that his classmates shouted down Xu Xiaofei before she had even started to speak, and she found it difficult to recover.
All this for trying to get elected for class monitor in a Chinese school1. There was alot of underhandedness when I read how a class of 8 year olds go about their campaign.
I wonder how this differ from class reps/monitor being selected in Irish schools? This just reminds me of the Simpson's episode when Bart ran for class president against Lisa. Does that kind of dirty campaigning in schools really happen in US?
1 Please Vote For Me is part of the BBC's Why Democracy? season and will be broadcast on Sunday 7 October at 2000 BST on BBC Four. - Democracy in a Chinese classroom
Those Japanese think of everything! I've been thought a craze of making sushi at home, and it's so simple! Ok, it make take a few hours to prepare (more so for things to cool down), but they are so scrumptious as well. But back to the point of this post, a sushi maker to make life easier for all you budding sushi makers. Ok, as my cousin pointed out, it is a bit small, but I still like the idea. Heehee.
...in the menu, that is. The Chinese government is tackling badly translated menus.
[...] the poor English translations "either scare or embarrass foreign customers and may cause misunderstanding of China's diet habits".
Two examples from the article:
* "virgin chicken" for a young chicken dish
* "burnt lion's head" for pork meatballs
Thing is, anything translated straight from Chinese, from kungfu styles to food dishes to meanings of paintings to people's nicknames etc., they can be confusing. That is why especially in martial arts movies, names are so funny.
But aside from bad translation, the Chinese government are tackling bad manners like spitting and just being plain rude. Hopefully this will last longer, and it's not just for the Olympics.
I'm just wondering, why can't the the expats just send their kids to the normal schools instead of having so much problems with school places shortages at the International schools. I suppose most of these expats and people who are returning to HK feel that they have to give their kids the best school. Snobbery, yeah. But I suppose when I have kids, I want them to go the best school we could afford (*hint hint, my hubby's school.. heehee). But most expats are business people, and status is everything, even more so in HK.
But on the other hand, HKU was snubbed by a top student and chose Peking University, even though she was offered $560,000 scholarship.
Pork bun suppliers are making them out of cardboard, which is initially soaked in caustic soda, then mixed with fatty meat and steamed. And this is in Beijing, where the Olympics is going to be held. Definately not good publicity. Why do certain people have to con other people, and isn't there a heath risk at all?
From the Beeb, some pictures on the historic area of central HK, that will be demolished for new skyscrapers and apartments.
This opens a new window: In pictures A historic part of Hong Kong is under threat from developers
*gulp... my heart kind of stopped when I saw this headline, Hong Kong probes cable car plunge. Hong Kong as you know, now has cable cars travelling to the Bronze Buddha (Ngong Ping Skyrail) and Ocean Park has them as well. The incident could happen in one or the other. It happened to be Ngong Ping Skyrail cable cars. But luckily no-one got hurt, and it happened in a test run, and the ride was closed on the day. But still, it's pretty scary thing to hear about since my hubby and I were on it earlier this year. And we love cable cars. I suppose it's a known risk that this will happen, but still... eep!
The problem with too many people (around 1.3 billion) and only 100 surnames might just rear its ugly head. Even though there are just over 1600 surnames in total in China. Changes suggested that both parents surnames are to be adopted to help ease confusion, especially for the police.
At least 100 000 people share the name "Wang Tao", the China Daily said, citing the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Just saw this in my search for more Irish Chinese blogs, news etc... Interesting opinion found in the Indo. Heehee, and I did indeed fill out the Census.
... for appoving fake drugs. He was a former head of the State Food and Drug Administration, so nothing to sniff at either, quiet a tough sentance for someone who was so high up. 
As I expected, China is trying very hard to clean up its image with regards to all the food and drug fiasco that came into light recently.
Given the scares, imports of dodgey meats into America are highlighted in this Washington Post article.
All I can think of is the prawn paste made in HK, it's disgusting how it's made, dried in the sun, lots of things flying around it, but that is how it matures. Sure, take cheese, bacteria is used to mature it. What about meat in N. European countries, where they just bury it in the ice for storage and come back to it a year later, rotten but is eaten as a delicacy. So in one culture, how certain foods are prepared and eaten is different.
Back to the fake drugs, cosmetics and food stuff... Hong Kongers always have know there are fake stuff in HK from Mainland, it's sometimes hard to tell the difference. A bargain is always found in HK, so you never know which bargain is potentially a life-threatening one.
All I can say, I'm glad I am in the EU, it's not perfect, but it still eliminates all the scary imports. In my opinion, even US drugs are dangerous and untested, and not suited for the general market, and I am glad some are banned in the EU.
Well, China's not the only offender (but still needs alot of work to clean up their exports), here is an interesting look at what was refused by the FDA in the States: U.S. Food and Drug Administration Import Refusal Reports
 Read full article: Death penalty for China official
For us here in Ireland, it's the property bubble, but in China, another kind of bubble has appeared, the graveyard bubble. This means people buy plots of land in a graveyard, and depending on the location of the plots, they can be sold for lots of money. But some punters did not get any plots of land after handing over their life savings. This for profit attitude again has a cost on normal people who just want their loved ones last resting place to be good. But loved one who is laid to rest and then gets moved out after the "lease" has expired is a strange way to show how much they love them. It's strange how things work over there.
... and by text messages according to the Beeb report about supposed tainted bananas from China's Hainan Island. Word of mouth can really be dangerous, even if it's by text.
Ok, it's only a few stories, but enough to open your eyes if you decide to move to Dublin and work there. From the Indo online, I read experiences of different people who had to not only share a house, or a room, but a bed. Or rent a sofa?!? This might be the extreme, but with my friends commenting on rents going up all the time, I am not surprised that people who arrived for the first time in the city, and find it hard to find some decent accommodation.
Read full article: Rent? Astronomical. Deposit? Ridiculous. A room of your own? Priceless
...do as the Chinese do, so goes the headline in the indo about cultural awareness for Irish companies who are partnering more and more with Chinese companies.
Japan has many strange things, but a media booth that allows one to surf the internet, watch tv, play games, read manga etc. You can even sleep overnight, the staff won't mind! And since there is enough food and drink to last for hours, people are immersed in a world of their own.
Sounds great, but if I was to go into one, I might get addicted. There is definate danger surrounding this one.
Read this article about lift going up by itself and crashed into the ceiling in Tokyo! Eep, that is scary. Given that high-rise buildings are the norm in the Far East, and lifts are very common, it's a bit scary reading this! Even in my current apartment block in Dublin, granted it's only 4/5 floors up, the lift sometimes acts a bit funny e.g., slow to close the doors and start moving!
This is what happens with all the technological advances, and we rely so much on software, as in this case, labelling the colour of a sofa. A direct entry from an out of date dictionary from a Chinese software company into their translation engine caused this furore with the family who found the error of the description. I'm not even going to mention the word in this entry, you'll have to read the article yourself. But is this another form of Chinglish and/or Chinese ignorance?
According to the Indo's article, Asian first time buyers are on the rise.
Octopus smartcards have been deducting money from more than 500 card users who use machines to add credit to their cards. Whoops, no-one knows why, but how do you know it's your card, since the card is no way linked to the person carrying it, it's just e-cash. Hope they solve this little problem. It's a shame that something like this can discourage people to use this handy system of paying for public transport, food, parking etc.
And it's funny that Big White Guy picked up that Departed was mentioned as based on a Japanese movie on TV at the oscars! I did not think it was that good, the backdrop for The Departed just could not compare to Hong Kong! And it was not subtle. I did not even watch the end of The Departed, mainly 'cause I was on the plane, and couldn't be bothered (and I was tired).
Japanese people have gone into a cleaning frenzy.
Fortune-tellers are now advising those who want to succeed in life to start by scrubbing the smallest room.
Logging a support issue and see if I can get this resolved.
UPDATE: IBC board is now back up.
Seems like the Chinese New Year market has gone ahead. I have not seen or heard much about it, since I only got back from Tokyo last night, and I'm down in Limerick to be with family for CNY.
While I was in Sydney (one of the cities on my honeymoon trip), I came across their big CNY festival. I got hold of their brochure and free postcard. I doubt our future events will be as big as theirs, since our local Chinese population is so small. Just looking around Sydney, you see Chinese realtors, their Chinatown, so much Asian business there.
Since this will be my first CNY as a married woman, it will be my first time handing out Lai Sees. My brother Wil has already said "Sun leen fai lok, lai see dau loi!", this means... "Happy new year, hand me the lai see!". Well, it's not officially New Year, so I did not given him any. >-<
Anyhoo, wishing you all a happy, healthy and a prosperous new year.
Oh, heard about this guy who was going around the city speaking only in Irish as project to see how people react. He said that folks are annoyed with him, or ignored him, or get things wrong. But from what the article depicted, it made city folks ignorant. Well, not really. I think most folks would think he was just a snotty, rich kid being smart-a**ed. If he came up to me, I would find him utterly rude. At least he should introduce to people what he is trying to do.
Discuss at IBC board.
Many a time instant noodles was our dinner when we don't have time to cook, this is not now, this was back years ago. Of course we don't just eat one brand all the time, we try many. I cannot remember all the names, but I think one of them is "Yat Ding", the one with a picture of a cartoon boy. Now you have instant rice noodles, macoroni etc...
What to do without them on those last nights after coming home late from work.
Check out this comic.
Has anyone noticed the increase in Chinese medicine.herbal shops lately? There are two opposite each other on Grafton Street alone! There is at least one in shopping centres that I have been to, which includes Jetland shopping centre (Limerick) and Dundrum (Dublin).
Ok, nothing spectacular in HK, fireworks are normally reserved for the Chinese Lunar New Year.
Happy, happy new year, everyone! Not much ringing in the new year at home, just spent it with family. May this year bring luck, happiness and good health to all.
Well, if they are interested in coming to your country, of course. That is why many countries are pitching themselves to the next wave upon wave of Chinese tourists at the Shanghai Convention Centre. On top of that, there is a book on showing how as a Chinese tourist, how to behave in a civil manner. Heh. It's all here.
The boorish behaviour will not disappear overnight, but hopefully it will. I do get mortified when I witness a Mainland Chinese person loudly clearing one's throat and spit on the groud. Eurgh!
On other news..., The China Rose Wedding is coming to Ireland. It's 40 couples who will tie the knot in one ceremony, and honeymoon in Dublin and the west of Ireland in Nov 2007. Cannot find anymore details on this, probably more will pop up when the time is nearer, unless they are all in Chinese.
Update from the damaged undersea cables from Taiwan's earthwauke. Telecommunications and internet services are not fully up, for HK, it would take upto 3 weeks to fix it completely.
Well, it's post-Christmas leftover time. And what do you normally do with leftover turkey and ham? Our family tends to look forward to turkey congee (although I lost my taste buds due to a crappy cold). All the turkey bones, leftover meat and ham gets toss into this rice porridge... mmmm... It's pretty yummy. It's full of flavour from the roast. I suppose it helps me as well, 'cause I am sick. It's a good comfort food, and keeps you nice and warm.
It's so easy to make. Tastes good, and also good for you!
It's so sad to see things like this, especially when it's committed by an Asian. The killing of the postmaster in Kilkenny was a tragic event, it is good to see the killer remanded in custody. One person can give a whole community a bad name, always the minority. From my experience, the Asians always kept to themselves, and any news that gets into the papers is always bad news.
Man, Chinese people and respect. It can fall foul so easily, as in this case with one Chinese man killing a fellow countryman. But if you can't do the time, don't do the crime.
But some good news, the 1st ethnic Chinese person to run for office in Belfast. It's a tremendous step in regards to all the racism that is happening in N. Ireland. Down here, we should take note of this, maybe we can learn something from it.
Strange to hear about Maid cafés. But they are not just found in Japan, but in Canada as well! Do guys (and gals) actually feel comfortable eating their noodles with these pretty girls all dressed up, whose also willing to talk to them? Strange world.
So banking in China is not efficient. Which is completely opposite to Hong Kong. Everytime I go to the bank in Hong Kong, the queue is long, but it's all done pretty quickly. Better than Ireland, for sure! But why is there a huge difference in efficiency in Mainland China compared to Hong Kong? Maybe Hong Kongers have a faster pace of life, and things needs to be done? This really does not help me picture an improved China at all. This just instills that services are still sloppy, and don't give a toss about the customers. No matter how hard I try not to be biased against Mainland China compared to Hong Kong, people's experiences in China on day-to-day things like this is not helping. I think bad news always makes it ten times as worse, it just increases our ignorances.
Onward with my wedding-related posts. This time it's about western people who live in Japan, and are getting hired as fake priests for western style weddings! Apparently it's quite a money-spinner. The traditional Japanese wedding is not as popular anymore, and the chapels for these weddings can be found anywhere i.e. in the middle of shops in a shopping plaza! The couples know that this is for show, and they do register properly so their marriage is recognised.
It's crazy what Asians do to have a Western style wedding, see another blog entry I posted a while back.
It's not just Chinese who are materialistic, it's Asians in general. Take a Japanese jeweler who are selling gold calendars, yes, gold calendars for around 20 million yen (133K) each! Crazy, isn't it?
Someone was asking in the IBC forum to create some sort of a gallery for folks here to post up pics. Was playing with Gallery 2, but it sucks. Anyhoo, Flickr is still good to use.
I created a group in Flickr in response to this : http://www.flickr.com/groups/irishbornchinese
So, when more folks post up pics, a flickr badge will be updated with the latest pics from that group, either in HTML or Flash... like as follows:
But most likely be in HTML. Folks can just send pics from their flickr account to the group, and you can discuss about the pics. Plus it has an RSS feed that people can subscribe to.
Plus if we get enough pics, we can print out cute business cards courtesy of moo.com.
Only in Japan would you find the forerunner of innovative ideas being tried, like this footsteps powered ticket machine.
Wow, these tees are so much cheaper than buying online.
This is wierd, a robot that cooks Chinese food, called AICookingrobot. Not sure about the replacing of cooks in fastfood restuarants, or home-cooking. I am sure it's a good idea, but I doubt it will take off.
What is otaku-hunting? Well, according to this article, it's targetting and robbing young otakus (obsessed fan of animé, manga and videogames). Young as in, they still attend school. Some of these robbers have been arrested. And the reason why they rob young otakus?
"Otaku are weak and they've got money, so we went after them," one of the arrested youths told the police.
I know you have to be wary in cities, but I am looking forward to Akihabara, and stories like this do not put my mind at ease.
As you may have noticed that I made a little change in the colour scheme of the site. Removed the recent entries from the sidebar, less clutter. Plus a new banner. Updated the scheme throughout the archives (categories and monthly) and individual entries. I hope I did not miss anything out.
It's a slight change, 'cause I don't have time to do a full site re-design.
You know, one thing I always wanted to do right and look cool doing was spinning a pen. I always see my best friend (who is from HK) do it. It looks so cool. I can just grasp the basic, but the pen drops more than I spin it. At least I learnt it the proper way. It's more of an Asian thing, they sit in school, bored listening to the teacher, they just twirl their pens, and even while reading or thinking. I don't know why, but maybe it helps them to think about things, calm their nerves?
So what brought this on...? Well, apart from memories of being in school twirling the pen, I came across this crazy vid on Japanese pen twirlers:
Oh, if you want to find out how to do basic twirling, check out the following vid to start you off...
Comments welcome at the IBC forum.
Just trying out Google Adsense, since I'm working on the site voluntarily and I fund the site personally, I might as well try and see if I can generate a Euro or two.
It's not too intrusive.
Just added the following tweaks to the atom feed generator for the IBC forum:
(Both pics from Derek's Flickr Stream)
As I announced in the IBC forum that the Irish Born Chinese Forum now has its own Atom feed.
I finally got around to write it over the weekend, with some tweaks from Mick. And yes, it's written in Python using SQLAlchemy and ElementTree.
You can find the button on the right-hand side of the IBC blog (a bright orange and grey button). Just right-click and copy the link and subscribe to it in your favourite feed reader.
It gets updated every few minutes or so, so it does not bombard my sql server. So be patient, it will update.
Final update, it all works now. Woohoo! Sorry for any inconveniences this may have caused.
Dreamhost got back to me about the links that are now working:
It seems the dns for those domains was incorrect. I updated it in our
database and flushed our nameservers, so they should start working for
you as soon as your isp's nameservers clear their caches.
The one that is working at the moment is http://irishbornchinese.com.
http://irishbornchinese.kaykays.com is still down. Will check later in the day.
Just got word from my bro, Vince (passed on from Wil that is) that the following are links are not working (error id: "bad_httpd_conf"):
I have contacted my host and hopefully they will resolve it soon (they always do ).
The last time this happened was bad DNS. So we have to have to wait and see.
Apolagies for any inconvenience caused.
My host (Dreamhost) had some outages, which of course took down my IBC sites and forum.
Just to let you all know. :)
More info : http://www.dreamhoststatus.com/category/system-outages/
Public loos in HK are dreadful, well, less so now I suppose. I would avoid going to public toliets as much as I can. I know, I know, it's bad to hold it in, but being a girl going to a public loo and squatting (it's a hole in the floor loo. Ok, a loo in the floor, it's porcelin, and you can flush it... But it's not your usual toilet bowl!). I hated it. It was disgusting. Guys, you never knew how lucky you all are.
Well, while I was in HK, there was a poll taken on public loos (even Big White Guy mentioned it), and top 3 were given gold, silver and bronze ratings. I read it in the South China Morning Post. Strange, but at least it highlights the crappy public loos HK has. Yes, please improve them. But, lo and behold, I recognised the bronze winner, it was the public loos at the Wishing Tree in Lam Tsuen. I thought that was cool. They do have swish loos, automatic taps, loo flush, everything all spick and span.
But on my recent trip to HK, I do notice the public loos in plazas are really well kept. Now I don't fear as much now going into public loos in HK.
There you go, loos in HK.
Hmm, maybe I should have posted that I was going away for 2 weeks to HK before I left! Anyhoo, I am back now.
Tons of wedding-related shopping done. Golden Plaza near Prince Edward is a 4-floor building packed with wedding stuff for all types of weddings, Eastern and Western styles.
Anyhoo, just spent a wodge of time cleaning up the fake users on the IBC board... I hate them so much, spammers should all have horrible done to them! It's ruining everything for everyone.
Nowadays being a young person in Ireland with things looking bright, good job, great city (I like Dublin), great people... ok, there are downsides like day-to-day expenses of food shopping, bills, house prices (reason why I am still renting). Yes, house prices in Ireland, Dublin in particular are getting out of control. News about young people, especially single females getting 100% mortgages, which they will have to try and pay off for the next 35 years. And interest rates has gone up 3 times already this year, and there are more to come by the end of this year. No matter how I grumble on how small the appartment I am renting, which is in an ideal location and very good security, it does not beat Hong Kong (Tokyo aside, of course). BBC online actually have pictures of flats that were built in the 60s to alleviate "squatters and tenement dwellers". Just thinking about how expensive it is here, does not compare to HK. Ok, maybe the town where my parents are from might be more affordable than here, but I would rather spend that money on a house, not an appartment, here or HK.
Check it out, the pictures speak louder than words.
Comments welcome at IBC forum.
Read about three restaurant staff who were stabbed by two diners (From Irish Independant, need registration to read) , arising from not being happy with their meal. This happened in Magic Wok restaurant in Charlestown, Co Mayo, on Sunday night.
Came across this blog commenting that I am racist?!?!?!?
In their own words:
"This is specially for IBCs (Irish Born Chinese) to post articles with regards to IBC's life in Ireland and comment on articles posted."
Only Irish-born Chinese? Isn't that a tad racist?
Hmm, did that person did not bother read the blurb I have above of my page? I have expressed that I welcome all, even in the forum. So much for me wanting to know other Irish born Chinese of my generation. Of course, I wouldn't forget about other overseas born Chiinese and non-overseas born Chinese.
Sorry folks, problem with the scanner (Canoscan N124OU), doesn't seem to be picked up by the pc, even though I removed the driver and re-installed it. Plugging it into all USB ports, but Windoze does not want to pick it up. This sucks. Well, I will keep trying and see... prob end up getting another scanner, and toss this out the winder (figuratively speaking that is).
A friend emailed me recently about my last post about Moore Street, and he was saying that I should have called it 毛街. Would more Chinese folks think of Mao Tse Tung! Heh, I would be inclined to think of hair or fur myself. *lol
He also said
I knew there was a Chinese pub beside the Alilang Korean restaurant on Parnell street (the eastern part of Parnell Street compared with O'Connell Street, not the same side as UGC). I never went in. From the outside it looked pretty grotty. Maybe it's changed. And I knew it was called 酒酒吧.
Came across this article commenting on the Moore St on how multi-ethnic it has become. Well, we all know that living here, but more and more tourists notice this. And more of these travel articles point that out. I did not even know there was a pub where Asians hang out. Well, there you go. Heh, I normally go to the pubs on the Southside, although I might go to Pravda or D2 sometimes.
Hey all! You can access this site via http://www.irishbornchinese.com! The IBC forum can be access via http://irishbornchinese.com/board.
Wow, smart cards are being faked, I wonder how many do get through though. The article mentions 2 people trying to use the fake cards getting into HK. Another thing though, would there be problems with genuine cards being mis-read? I wonder if there were any complaints from people about them?
What do you think? Discuss at IBC Forum.
Just to let you know, the sidebar on the right was getting a little too long from all the links to the monthly archives since 2002! So I have moved them http://kaykays.com/archive_page.html for your perusal. Nothing exciting, but at least it relieves the clutter a bit for now while I try and contemplate on redesign of site that has been put on the longest finger ever! You can also find the link the archives page under Personal Links on the sidebar.
I read this article, 'China in their hands, world at their beck and call' in the Indo the other day. More and more Chinese women are in China now earn more money and have more choices. Materialism is on the up and up.
In 21st-century China, expectations of women - and the expectations they have of themselves - have become so complicated that it would be hardly surprising to see a woman steelworker step out of a Maoist propaganda poster clutching a Chanel handbag in one hand and cradling a baby on her other arm.
As I chatted with a friend of mine the other night, some acquintaces of his were trying to set him up with a Chinese girl. But he was a bit turned off after being warned that she is has expensive tastes when it comes to shopping. He can't quite understand why? What is so important about these rip-off items that Chinese women fall head-over-heels over? But it's fundamentally there, every women secretly wants to be lavished on. And none more so than the Asian women.
Before China became as wealthy as they are now (at a phenomonal rate), it was predominantly Chinese women from the wealthy countries like Hong Kong (before crash in 97), Singapore and Japan (they still spend even though the economy has been in great depression). You can see it, in the last decade, it was just HK, Singaporeans and Japanese tour groups. Now it's dominated by Chinese tourists from Mainland China. It's incredible. All the expensive (high street) stores don't care, money (more so cash) are rolling in for them.
For me, I don't really care for Gucci, LV, Dior etc., but for many, it's new found status symbol. Materialism has spread like wildfire in China (to those who can afford it). Then there are those who love the labels, but do not like paying for its high price, and get rather cheaper knockoffs in China on their holidays. Yes, tourists love it there for that. As for me, I don't really care about that either.
I restate how materialistic Asian women are, see this entry in bigwhiteguy's blog about this HK women who bought a 123 number plate cos it was 'cute and memorable'! OMG, that is just crazy... because it cost her HK$1.5 million (EUR160K)!
Wow, what crap weather today. Why are Tuesday's so crappy? Is it just Irish roads that gets jammed up with the slightest hint of rain? Well, it could be worse, my friend Kieran tasted the cold winter in Beijing when he took a trip down to Tianamen Sq.. But another friend of mine Derek is at the ice festival up north, a bit nippy at a cosy -20 degrees celcius.
This is my friend Derek at Harbin. Amazing sculptures! (More of his pics at http://flickr.com/photos/derekindalian/)
I suppose the guys are having so much fun, they probably haven't heard much of the HN51 in Asia. Worrying enough, recent news mentioned that there could be an endemic in HK!
With all the madness of the run up to the Chinese New Year with prices of chicken going as high as HK$200, normal price is HK$20-40. It's no wonder many folks were trying to get as many poultry into the territory. My uncle ended working New Year's just because of the over-ordering of poultry, and had to be sent back (since HK don't allow imported poultry to stay in HK). But on a lighter note, the lantern festival is still happening in HK.
The Radiant Romance lantern show will light up Kowloon Park January 20 to February 26 to celebrate the Lunar New Year.
An interesting article I found about threats to traditional Chinese celebrations?. Many taboos for Chinese New Year are already lost for all us bananas (heh), I mean overseas Chinese. But this is still true back in the Far East. Younger generations just go an enjoy themselves, with so much influences of the west. It's a shame really. Face was mentioned in the article, I really hate the way face is important in Chinese society. It's snobbiness, but it's all part and parcel of being Chinese. Not very auspicious attitude, right? But everyone enjoys these traditional celebrations. In fact many overseas Chinese embrace it (even if we don't keep with all the aspects). It's great to be celebrating with family, visiting relatives. Something to be happy about. Ok, red packets are on the minds of kids, but curiousity of many young people are aintrigued on where this all come from. With the Chinese Channel on satellite nowadays, many can see what is happening back in the Far East. Everyone gathers together to watch tv like they do in HK as well. It brings us all closer. So I agree with the article that just becuase traditions are changed slightly, does not mean that the traditional celebrations will be lost.
But being the Year of the Dog, according to the lunar calendar... we have 13 months! From Asian-pacific news :
The lunar year begins Jan. 29 and lasts 385 days, till Feb. 17, 2007. It includes an extra month between the seventh and eighth months, and two 'lichun' days -- which mark the beginning of spring -- on Feb. 4 of 2006 and 2007.
Now that is long! And I can still get married in the year of dog.
(Views you want to comment on? Go to Irish Born Chinese forum.)
In my previous entry I mentioned Lam Tsuen's Da Jiu (Peace) festival to give thanks for the safety of the region that was part of the devastating typhoon decades ago. Tai Po's Da Jiu festival does not happen yearly, it's a few decades (not sure how many) between each one, so it is a very big event. Not everyone can go twice is what mom and dad said. Now that's a long time for a big festival.
I got curious then about the typhoon disaster. I remember my dad mentioning many typhoon disaster, and I am wondering was the one in 1937 was the one he talks about (he was not born then). I found this article though when I searched for more information. But the search results did not harbour anymore results.
So 2 young guys armed with a knife trying to rob a Chinese Takeaway up North rang up the police to say that they were threatened with a knife when the takeaway owner picked up a knife and challeneged the robbers!
Give me a break! What chancers.
So a friend of mine will be rotated out to the Beijing office for 2 months (i.e. he will be doing the same job but working in a different office in another country). He mentions inflation here... well, I can imagine how he will feel after his 2 month stint in Beijing and coming back over here! At least he will save some money while he is there, I heard drink is dirt cheap (unless you go to the touristy places of course).
I have not done this for awhile, but not much good news out there, I'm afraid.
Start off with Racists attacks on takeaway delivery people, there has been reported attacks around Dublin over the Christmas period. I am sure there are more around the country. This is not just aimed at Chinese, any non-national attacks have occured as well. But so few are being reported, which I think is a shame. Given that some are afraid to report incidents, I suppose even people who are not immigrants don't report incidents all the time.
A man got arrested for pirating DVDs, for shame is all I could say. Even in Hong Kong, there were less pirated stuff for sale.
And now for something utterly expensive : 12-a-cup of tea is being sold by Harrod's! It's Oolong that can be rebrewed upto 7 times. I am sure the tea shop owner in Tai Po Market would appreciate it. I don't know the name of the street, but it is near Fu Shin Street.
Wishing everyone the very best this 2006. (Since no comments are allowed here anymore... comments can be posted in the IBC forums)
... Haven't checked out BWG's site for awhile and I came across his how should one celebrate Christmas in HK?. Heh, I liked that he mentioned that he visited the Lam Tsuen Wishing Tree. Coupled with watching the HK news today on all the arrangements for folks to ring in the New Year earlier today, it reminded me of my Christmas in HK. Mick and I ended up at a relatives BBQ for xmas. Mick has bad memories about that BBQ, he did not feel too well from eating at a fast food place before heading for the huge BBQ that night!
Anyhoo... we have our bottle of bubbly ready....
Hey all, I am off out of the country for Christmas, so it will be even more quiet, unless I get internet connection.
So happy hols to everyone! I was meant to draw a pic before I go but this will have to do...
Saw this article about 1 person's view of Dublin's diversity. They found the common stereotypes of non-nationals is not what it seems in Fair Old City.
Talk to an Asian man in a convenience store, for instance, and you'll swear he's American.
Of course Asians are one of the multi-ethnic groups of people he briefly mentions. And he included a quip here and there from the locals on their view of a more multcultural society.
More like a diary, but interesting read.
I also added the Unofficial Fight School in the menu on the right-hand-side.
My bro has a post in the forum duscussing about martial arts (includes link on how I started the Fight School forum).
✼ 韋岐 ✼
It's crazy, just 2 years and there is a huge jump in the percentage of non-nationals buying houses here.
Due to mega amount of sp@m being received each day (clocking up between 10 and 100). I have temporarily disabled comments and trackback.
I will still post articles, but you can further continue discussion at the messageboard.
My apolagies for not allowing folks freely posting legit comments and trackback. Hopefully I will get this resolved as soon as possible. Until I find a better spam filter, or when I get a chance to move my site to something else (which is soon).
I have noticed the word sino used in many articles. I sometimes use it (not alot), and I have always wondered how on earth does the word sino relate to anything Chinese? I suppose, the easy way to find out is to do a search in the dictionary... meaning from Oxford dictionary
combining form Chinese; Chinese : Sino-American. —ORIGIN from Latin Sinae, from Arabic.
Wikipedia did not help here.... it only redirected me to China!
Only just over half China's 1.3 billion people can communicate in Mandarin, the official Xinhua news agency cited a national survey as showing last year, while almost 90 percent can speak dialects ranging from Cantonese to Hokkien and Hakka.
So have you all eaten your mooncakes yet? By golly, you should take a look at this monster of a one! That is one big mooncake!
I know, that does not narrow it down, but this particular friend has a blog of his ongoing adventures over there in Dailan. It's pretty cool to read up on what he's been upto. Maybe I will get a section together with links to non-Chinese blogs living in Asia.
Two men charged with stabbing Gardaí in Dublin were Chinese. Is it a norm now? I thought it was just the usual robbery, but was shocked to find out that they were Chinese! I am disappointed, but also I need to be realistic. There will always be a small number of scumbags for every normal person out there. And on a lighter note (well, sort of)... Chinese Information Centre helped raise over 30K last week for the parents of a Chinese student who died when their house was burgled.
Ok, this is icky, but a leech in your nose, all that blood it's sucking up, and it is all big and squishy. Eeew, and it made it into Beeb's news, but I initially read it on Big White Guy's blog entry. Even so, hiking can be good and can be bad. It's awful to think about hikers being attacked and robbed, but now leeches.
Finally got it up... backed up, ran a few commands and upgraded the board to the newest release. And hey presto! ;) Now folks can chat again .
All visitors to my board maybe experiencing issues with access. If you are ok, please DO NOT CHANGE THE STYLE. An exploit was dsicovered, and I was only aware when a registered user on the board pointed it (Thx, Arsheen!). I will be upgrading to latest phpbb and more information can be found here at the phpbb forums .
Please bear with me until I get home and make the changes.
-- Your friendly admin, Vicky
Well, you have Hong Kongers warding off evil spirits with feng shui underpants! And then I see that they are rolling out 100Mbps and 1Gbps Residential Broadband Services by June 2005. Yowsers!
The Irish pub that banned smoking will could be in jeopardy because they are being prosecuted for obstructing the pavement from the smokers sitting outside. I think it would be great, no more smokey clothes, but that is my opinion. But the HK government has been proposing this for quite some time. And alot of people apposes it. So only time will tell.
If you cannot see the pic (even after re-loading), you can check out other pics, here is another pageful of pics of HK Christmas lights 2004. (Takes a long time to load up, but worth it.)
"Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!"
Interesting article about Ireland, with Dublin as prime example. I just did not realise that so many Chinese people rent in the Smithfield area though.
Now I have to disagree with BWG's opinion on Fei Fei, but I suppose only folks will know about her if they grew up and see what she goes through (sometimes a bit too much becuase of the intrusiveness of HK paparazzi). She is a true entertainer. Many big stars (yes that's including Jackie Chan, Chow Yeung Fat etc) has respect for her. Fair play to you, Fei Fei.
Nathan Rd to become a pedestrian mecca if the government has their way. Some interesting proposals, but no schedule for anything yet.
Yo! Change of style of IBC board. There are other styles to choose from, and if you are registered forum user, you can change to other styles or back to the original one (subSilver), if you want.
Check it out - http://irishbornchinese.kaykays.com/board
Free meals for lasting love from a restaurant in Guangzhou trying to pass the message on to young people that love should be cherished more.
More than we are, they spend a fortune buying imported pumpkins, partying, dressing up. It's amazing. Here, I think the weather has dampened the booms and bangs of fireworks.
This is getting rather annoying... sp@m ahoy there... after just a weekend away.. I think I accidently removed some old comments by accident. But let us not delve into the past, let's try and keep a positive mind... sigh
Came across this article about someone's experience with the Chinese reactions in some places.
So HK has avoided typhoons over the month of September, but check out the tornado at Chek Lap Kok airport
Heh, so corruption by mooncakes is a thing to watch out for.
Eating 18 mooncakes in 90 seconds it's just sick!
And for more health concious people, more marketing ploys to get people to eat mooncakes.
Now, I don't really eat mooncakes (very filling and not very good for you, but for most it's a once a year thing anyway). But everytime I've been coming home, mom has been asking if I want some, one without the yolk (brought back by my cous), and mom showed me these gold leafed mooncakes. I really did not believe her when she said gold leaf on a moon cake! Well, now I know.
And on the relation of food, a woman got stung by a scorpion at Wellcome store.
To your right, you notice that I removed the calendar (sort of a waste of space, and not very useful). Then I moved the button of the search section... and a new section that lists out the last 10 posts on IBC message board.
From IOL news - Man injured in Limerick industrial accident
Doors to Europe to open for wealthy Chinese tourists but for these tourists, in case they don't return to China, they have to
pay a deposit of 50,000 yuan (around 6,000 dollars), and proof of another 50,000 yuan deposited in a bank account for at least six months!!!
And yes.. something about footie... Jihai Sun rise to midfield tonight .
As we all brace ourselves for the tail end of Hurricane Charley (thunderstorms, tornadoes, floods...), weather is acting up all around the world as well. And it's not looking good for bigs cities like Hong Kong,as BBC points out in their article, HK heat risks bacteria growth .... oh boy!
Apart from what all kids (and maybe some adults) do in the pool, red worms were spotted causing 3 Kowloon Park pools to be closed, and are be inspected and cleaned. Definitely not what you want when you want to cool down from all the heat.
And lighter news of Pui Pui, the once elusive croc has started eating again.
I know unemployment is still high, but stealing scrap metal from public loos is another!
Ok, more so because at least I avoided the stronger typhoons while I was in HK, now that Typhoon Megi is the 16th to sweep into East China. HK is currently experiencing what I can imagine, uncomfortable and many accidents happened recently in the harbour due to poor visibiliity. But hopefully this it lifted today. But judging by the weather forecast, it is still as sticky as ever!
...I hope. The Standard reported that it costs less to live in HK now!
Hong Kong plunged seven places to number 12 after falling out of the top five for the first time since 1997.
Food is definately cheap, and transport is excellent. Now, I am keeping a lookout on the job situation in HK. I am still in 2 minds to work there, not sure if I would fit in the materialistic society of HK. For me, it's more prevalent than here in Dublin.
Given that BigWhiteGuy doesn't like Mc DongDong's stuff, is is by pure coincidence that he noticed this fast food nation that is HK do favour McDongDong's. :)
Even the HK Standard mentions this, but would this favoured place of dining be still the favourite know that it's been fined for substandard frozen confection.
Siobhán O'Brien has asked me to post this message:
I am writing from a company called Transware. Transware produces corporate educational software in forty different languages. We need voice over artists (native speakers only) for projects at our Dublin studios. Currently we are looking for native speakers of different Asian languages, particularly Taiwanese, at this point in time!
Please contact me as soon as possible if this is of interest. You can contact me by email email@example.com or on 01 2187714.
[UPDATE]I have been informed (by my BF...laughing in the background) that I have already had an entry on ATM locations...http://kaykays.com/archives/000021.html... *sigh*
Boingboing's link to "Learning Mandarin is hard for native English speakers" rings true for Cantonese as well. A little inflexion and wrong intonation can cause a smile or a stern look... or just amusing laughter. I am probably very lucky to be able to tell the difference, but for folks learning to speak the language, it's all down to practice. :)
Even saying some expression depending on the tone can give the wrong impressions. All from experience for all you newbies I suppose.
Irish Eyes - Irish Chinese Connections Looks like Bernie has more connected then me. ;)
RTÉ News - Chinese PM's Irish visit continues, I forgot to blog about it yesterday. Saw a few Chinese folks with the Chinese/Irish flags walking past me while I was waiting for a bus. My brother mailed me this morning about the UL visit.
Chinese people are conservative, well, even more so in China! Until I saw this in BoingBoing - Sex theme park opens in China. Well, not sure what to think now! ;)
Anyone been there yet? (Or is it up?) - Hong Kong Government Tai Po Complex piccie here.... It looks huge, I only seen it work in progress 2 years ago.
A little chatting from people on what they are doing on Chinese new year at BBC news site - How are you celebrating the Chinese New Year?
I'm going to have a small meal with my BF, but I am heading home down to Limerick this weekend to have a big family dinner. Can't wait!
Do folks still get Lai Sees here in Ireland (abroad)? I know I still do. ;)
Wishing everyone good health, long life and prosperity.
Channel News Asia - Lunar New Year unites hundreds of millions across Asia in festivities
Thanks, Mick! Yup, people can now post comments (or send me articles to post up) now.
Hi, mick here, there have been some technical problems with kaykays.com's publishing system, Movable Type. Hopefully these have been resolved now.
As part of the solution Kaykays is in the process of moving over to a new installation of Movable Type so only the IBC and message boards are currently working. I'll get the other blogs (personal, coffee monkeys and travel) working again as soon as I can.
Someone asked for info on how to obtain the Chinese Channel, I posted the info I sent the person who asked about it. It's a step in the right direction, but I have added it to IBC message forum for this topic. If anyone has more info, please feel free to update the forum. Thanks.
Yup, it starts on Thur Sept 11 2003. I wish I was in HK, see what event they have on! Find out about the legend of the moon festival (and mooncake recipes)
Although my experiences of mid-autumn festival is not much, I do get to eat the occasional mooncake at home. I remember mom buying us the plastic lanterns that are in the shape of a lotus flower when we were really young. We use to see if we can catch the glimpse of the full moon (yes in Limerick!). But there is not usuall y anything fancy about it. I remember looking at many pictures of hanging lanterns, and many, many flowers, with family enjoying themselves on a evening out together. Then when we got the Chinese Channel, we saw clips of people enjoying themselves, making me even more jealous. Eveyone is happy, but so was I. I was tih family, that is what matter most.
They were unveiled on Wed, but will be circulated Dec of this year. Check out the pics, and more info from Xinhua news - HK to issue new banknotes. They look very nice.
China tops world ranking for number of college students Now that is alot of graduates!
Jeepers! And we thought it was hard for graduates to find jobs here! Read Big New network.com - 1m university graduates face unemployment... 1 million graduates face unemployment... (gulp)
And also from Big New network.com - Students battle post-test stress with superstition, spending. It never changes, does it? All this stress to get higher grades and get into college is so much higher than over here in Ireland. Not sure what it is like anywhere else, maybe someone can enlighten me about that? :) Anyway, right at this moment, I am doing a course, and it is not as stressful, and I am enjoying it. Students getting into college should enjoy the experience as well, yes, I know, there will always be a need for competitiveness anyway.
Ok, you probably notice that the site has changed its style a bit (a wee bit of colour doesn't hurt! :P) If you are a Mozilla user, check this handy page out to view fonts at a higher quality (courtesy of MickT) - My Mozilla Font Settings
Anyone and good tips on viewing Chinese fonts at a higher quality? If anyone has any other stuff to add (like a font question was asked recently), you can also post it to IBC message forum - General News (Easier for me to locate :) )
Ok, got it! This is traditional Chinese, and it looks better. And it sounds much better as well.
(Fonts are not installed on my Windoze box, so it looks awful! But hey, it works.)
And fixed up the Simplified Chinese from previous blog entry:
Thing is, can anyone give me the traditional Chinese translation of "Irish Born Chinese Blog"? I actually do know how to read this sentence before everyone starts commenting to me on what it means. But is it sound?
Yup, IBC's message board is back up! Boy that was quick. Thankfully to good docs from phpbb.
I am getting to it right now. I thought it was something to do with my host, and was waiting for their response yesterday. Only read it now... but this is more phpBB problem. Apolagies for the outage of the board. Will be back up as soon as possible.
It's not an epidemic, but it has occurred again. A man died from it after contracting it after visiting relatives, who also reared chickens, in China. While I was in HK during my Christmas break, culling of chickens was always in the news. My Uncle works in the imports of fresh stock to HK, and chickens are part of the imports. Alot of work goes into checking the chickens by testing them. If the chickens need to be culled, more investigation is needed to find its origin. Well, it was not as bad when I was in HK, but it still happens nonetheless. It does not deter me from having chicken in HK though, since it is part of our staple diet. I don't think Chinese can eat rice without chicken (as well as pork, fish and vegetables). And who can resist the chicken cooked in so many different methods in the food mecca that is HK!
The article - No Human Gene Found in Hong Kong Bird Flu Virus (from reuters.com)
Please place a comment in this blog if you want me to send you my contact details.
Um, not really sure if anything will come out of this, but a guy from some Dub magazine was asking for some info on research for Dulin Chinese community. Really chuffed, but it really helps that my site can be found really easily. But I need to get an About box together so people can contact me. Never mind the topic of discussion, just the comment... Here it is.
Just a comic I did of myself for you all. Wishing you all a Happy Chinese New Year.
Good health, and whatever you wanted to fulfil will get fulfilled.
Yay! Just got confirmation mail that Blogwise has a link to my site now. Go to Blogwise now.
Yup, it's back up! Somehow the mysql db came back to life. And my BF kindly upgraded my phpbb messageboard as well. Should not be noticing any changes, but if there are probs, do give me a shout!
Apolagies for some problems with connecting to the IBC's messageboard. I am finding out why there is a problem, and will try and get it fixed as soon as possible.
Do a search for "Irish born chinese" in google. The result is that I get first hit, Woohoo! 2 weekends ago, I trawled through all pages that mention those keywords but nothing came up remotely close to what I have. I am mighty chuffed. I have just submitted http://www.irishbornchines.kaykays.com for google to trawl next time round.
Bit annoyed with the category I ended up with though! : "Category: Home > Family > Pregnancy > Baby Names"
Now you can use http://irishbornchinese.kaykays.com to get to the Irish Born Chinese page now.
Getting people I know to join my forum and post stuff up is alot of work. But this is what I need to do to is to get more blogs up, and encourage people I know to put stuff up. You know, plump out my forums a bit before complete strangers visit my site. My options would be to suss out the IBCs in colleges (posters maybe), I have a few connections, ok, relations who are studying in college. Also put a notice up in the Asian Markets if they let it. I'll ask Uncle Pao and see...
Doh, just realised that auto-prune was making my articles disappear. Thought it was me going crazy thinking "Where did my topic go? I remember putting
Anyway, I find one thing looking oriental and being a lass really helps (though I did not believe it at the time) is that I can get past bouncers easier than others, and sometimes I was not even dressed to go out!
But it always makes me wonder about other orientals on a night out and what do they think when they see me. Do they ask the same questions I do in my head? Are you born in Ireland? Which college did you go to, I wonder? Do they or their family reside in Hong Kong? (I have an attachment to Hong Kong if you did not notice by now
That should end this blog article now. Till next time!
At the moment, I am the only one who can post articles to the blog. If you want me to post articles either send the articles to me : whykay[at]kaykays[dot]com
OR you can mail me to suscribe you to the blog and post up articles yourself.
For chat, you can just go to my discussion board located in the links side-bar to your right. -- Vicky
NOTE : Any articles that are offensive, religion related may be removed from the
site by me. Other than that I cannot be resposible for articles that gets posted up by other people.