Thursday, 29 September 2011


冰室 = bing sat: tea shop/cafe (literally, ice room)

Some places don't change...

Pick up the latest Time Out HK magazine to see my photos on the Hidden HK page. Small junks, two moons and a mysterious campsite. Here's a peek:

And for everyone in HK: happy 'phoon-day!

All content © Emilie Pavey

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

A dog's life

In Hong Kong, it's a tough life being a pet pooch. Your owners dress you, style you, and wipe your bum with Tempo tissues. When it comes to walkies though, HK hounds would probably be envious of the freedom enjoyed by their western counterparts. 

Some sit in their sanitised strollers and gaze at the pungent pavements with longing...

Whereas others face their un-doggy-like humiliation with stoicism... (though I suspect this fellow enjoys having a slave with a fan on hand.)

I had always assumed these dog owners were using kid's pushchairs for their pooches, until I noticed this red model in the window of a pet shop, and realised they were purposely pour chien.

(please also note the beige accessory in the foreground - for bona fide 'handbag dogs')

Pah, who needs exercise anyway?
Oh yes, your pet dog.

Dogs taking a dip.


Now, for the answer to my last post's taste test:
Disappointing Drink B was in fact the lemonade from internationally-marketed brand Glaceau, and more tasty Drink A its imitation, Victory Vitamin water.

V for... Vitamin!
All content © Emilie Pavey

Friday, 23 September 2011

Contains no juice

Here is a member of that ubiquitous rainbow-coloured drinks range: peacock-labelled 'lemonade' from Glaceau Vitamin Water. Convenience stores, vending machines and café chains in HK are well stocked with the stuff.

Contains: 100mg of vitamin C, vitamins E, B3, B5, B6, and B2 in more modest amounts, and 22.5g of sugar. Contains no juice!

Across the border, in Shenzhen, you may pick up a suspiciously similar-looking bottle complete with peacock colour scheme and pharmaceutically-inspired label design: meet 'lemon-style' Victory Vitamin Water, from Nongfu Spring. Hmm.

Contains: 100mg of vitamin C, vitamins E, B3, B5, B6, and B2 in more modest amounts, and 22.5g of sugar. No reference to juice on the bottle. Double hmm.

Equipped with both, a comparative (blind) taste test was called for. In no particular order...

...we sipped drink A.
Smell: lemony, tingly, light
Taste: flat, pleasant 
Sweetness: moderately sweet
Aftertaste: slightly sour, not unpleasant
Overall impression: drinkable, refreshing, faintly candy-flavoured lemon drink. We gave it three out of five stars.

...we sipped drink B.
Smell: faint, slightly stuffy lemon
Taste: lemon overpowered by clammy yeastiness
Sweetness: not very sweet
Aftertaste: pallid
Overall impression: slightly offputting, artificial, unconvincing liquid that doesn't quite know what it wants to be. We gave it 1.5 out of five stars.

Can you guess which drink is which? Answer at the bottom of this post!

Alternatively, here is another suspiciously similar pair.

All content © Emilie Pavey

Tuesday, 20 September 2011


大煙 = daaih yin: big smoke

Ever wondered why on some days, it's too smoggy to see across the harbour?
Perhaps this has something to do with it.

The exhaust fumes from ferries are so foul that the outside walls of the ferry piers are black with soot in places. And ferries are just a fraction of the boat traffic that uses the harbour as a highway.

Lungful of carbon monoxide with your sea breeze, anyone?

All content © Emilie Pavey

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Big plastic brother

Domestic cat, Tuen Mun

Cattle egret, Kuala Lumpur

All content © Emilie Pavey

Friday, 16 September 2011

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Old school

Village schools...
Where have all the children gone?

Another notable abandoned school is in old Mo Tat Village, Lamma, which is starting to be consumed by a tree. Pick up the current issue of Time Out HK to see my photo of it.

More dereliction.

All content © Emilie Pavey

Monday, 5 September 2011


關閘 = gwaan zaap: closed gate

All content © Emilie Pavey

Saturday, 3 September 2011


曬衣架 = saai yi ga: outdoor clothes drying rack

Due to densely-packed living quarters, it's perhaps not surprising that estate residents sometimes use street furniture as a washing-line (I do always hope they've wiped the railings down first).

This is actually not allowed, with signs in parks and other public spaces reminding the public: no clothes drying.  An enterprising individual has therefore found the perfect spot to advertise this home clothes drying system.

Local authorities threatening to remove your illegally-hung laundry? Just call the number.

What your apartment's washing line may look like.

All content © Emilie Pavey

Friday, 2 September 2011

秋天 2

This morning, the kids in the school nearby woke me up with some improbably enthusiastic back-to-school cheering at 7.30 a.m. To me, 'back to school' evokes memories of frost on the lawn and conkers, so it's no surprise that with 30 degrees and 85% humidity outside, I'm not quite feeling appropriately autumnal yet. However, by the Chinese calendar it's probably been autumn for a while already, since the week after next is mid-autumn festival, so like last year, now seems a good time to post these two butterflies I managed to capture recently (just photographically, not lepidopteristically!) before all things summer wither and die.

 Common Mormon (slightly moth-eaten, ho ho) - Mt Parker

Can anyone identify this one for me? Some kind of birdwing? - Lamma

Time Out HK's new issue is out this week. On the 'Hidden Hong Kong' page you can see my pictures of trees eating buildings, war & peace (in nature) and a mystery photo of a remote Qing-era fort... but where in HK is it?

All content © Emilie Pavey