I am not afriad of tomorrow, for I have seen yesterday and I love today~William Allen White

Archive for the ‘events’ Category

Babies have no infant formula: Hong Kong

I am so confused about the infant formula shortage, it’s such a weird HK issue. I really feel sorry for the mothers in HK, of all things to have to stress over! But if we are to seriously analyze the problem, there are so many parties to blame. How do I feel about水貨客? I find them just completely annoying because what they do are doing, pushing carts and boxes of heavy products in and out of public transportation are completely annoying and affecting our daily lives, but they are not to be blamed. These 水貨客 appear because these is such a large gap between HKD & RMB in regards to the exchange rate and to the fact there is no taxes in Hong Hong but taxes in China. Generally speaking, these gaps are not an issue if HK and China are two separate entities; however, nowadays, access between HK and China are so easy, of course the industry of水貨客 appear! We should applaud the business venture spirit of Chinese people and blame the government for their uselessness. If goods entering China are to be taxed as they are supposed to, than millions of people are breaking the law, so why are they not caught? Throw a few in jail, there should be a decrease # in this industry. People that “pull” frozen beef into China from HK actually tell 水貨客 to keep “pulling” these beef into China because they know the freezers at the immigration office are full so their items will not be taken away! If the government really wants to solve the水貨客 problem, it is possible! Don’t airplanes limit passengers to the amount of luggage they are allowed onto planes? Why can’t there be immigration officers at the HK/China check points performing the same function? People entering China/HK—consider them going overseas or whatever, they need to show arrival and departure cards and are limited to 20kg per person. Sorry, you cannot pay for additional carry on—all overweight luggage will be thrown away. Similarly, people that cross the border between HK/China that are not staying overnight might only be allowed 7kg per crossing and any 2nd, 3rd, or additional crossing on the same day are not allowed any additional luggage. Seriously, just issuing this luggage policy will stop 水貨客—if not 100%, at least 80%! If the government really want to stop this problem, they can! I mean, if I can think of it, why are people paid millions of dollars a year not able to? For me, I actually don’t give a crap who is the chief executive of HK, and I really think since CY Leung is now the chief executive, let’s just all shut up and let him do his job, because protesting and screaming every day and wanting to pull him down…what does that do? Like seriously, what does that do? Is there another person the people want? If not, let’s just give him some time and do what he’s supposed to do just because he is already at that post. I don’t know, I think instead of screaming and protesting “down with CY”, maybe the screaming and protesting should be on implementing these suitcase restrictions to be implemented to at least give the people in HK a little ease of mind. I too, find it appalling to see people wheeling cartons after cartons of toilet paper, yakult, chocolate across the border, sigh, WTF. If I go a step further, you can’t blame the consumers in China for buying infant formula in HK because they too don’t trust “made in China”, that’s the ultimate problem! Maybe shoot all the evil business enterprises with no ethics, that might solve the remaining 20% the luggage restriction might not solve haha. So the conclusion is…the problem rest with all evil enterprises in China that scared off all the consumers in China. Guys! HK is like a freaking dot on the map! All these PRC customers running to HK hoarding the goods, seriously, imagine the scenario, how can HK sustain? You have a mountain running to the needle, OMG! I talked too much again with my 5 cents.

Muka Beauty

I usually don’t share anything that could be traced to my personal job too much, but I want to officially share the launch of my new website.  This is my new business venture that I have started in Singapore, it is an online beauty and women accessories website, because being beautiful is a woman’s lifelong career!

So, I have actually been online non-stop everyday trying to jumpstart the website with my colleagues, but have absolutely no life… so nothing exciting to note on my personal blog, aside from walking my dog, eating durian, weekly brunch with some gals; the rest of the time, I’m sitting in front of the computer doing what computer geeks do ^0^

So why the word Muka…that’s a funny story, I was sitting at home trying to think of a possible name for the website that’s not super corny or the word is already in use.  I looked over at my tissue box and it says the word MUKA on it, it actually means “face” in Malay.  I know it means face because it says “soft facial tissue” in English on top .  ^^  Anyway, I like the sound of the word and many people might think it’s Japanese too!

Finally another reason I like the word a lot is because depending on where you are from, the way you pronounce it is different.  If you’re from North America, you will most likely be pronouncing it as “moo-ka”; whereas if you’re from England or not American, you will be calling it “mill-ka”.  So how do you pronounce my website’s name?  I really don’t care because just like beauty, there is no defined definition.  Just go with the flow, pronounce it however you like, so long as you know how to get there!  And THAT is why I am totally passionate about the word.

Alright, if you happen to stumble onto my blog or if you follow my blog, do me a favor and like my fan page on Facebook, please!!!!  www.facebook.com/mukabeauty!  Please also force all your friends to fan it too!

Until next time, it’ll be about my little adventures and Pretzel’s craziness!

In regards to the comment “Hong Kong people are dogs”

The episode:  A group of tourists from the mainland (around 3 women and their children) were riding on the MTR in Hong Kong;  while on the MTR, they started eating instant noodles, completely ignoring the “no eating” signs.  Another passenger on the MTR told them they cannot eat on the train and it ended up into a heated argument and yelling between Hong Kong people and Mainland tourists.  This definitely is a small and even “irrelevant” incident, but it led to a lot more internal buildup of frustration between the people living in HK and the people from the Mainland that all exploded through this minor incident.

Why the video went crazy in HK:  There are a lot of pent-up frustrations with local Hong Kong people over the influx of mainland tourists in HK.  It really bothered HK people when Mainland tourists feel they are above the law, talking loudly and rashly, but the worst part is the attitudes and images they portrayed.  It is common seeing Mainland tourists dragging little kids in shopping malls and they will suddenly drop their pants and start urinating or defecating in the middle of a shopping mall.  It is common to see Mainlanders just butting into a long line, sidling up to people and pretending to be in the line.  When caught, all they do is start yelling and saying they don’t understand Cantonese and their mentality is “if I can keep screaming and speaking really loud, you guys will eventually just let me be”.  I believe at the end of the day, these are just minor issues locals in HK will gulp down and “take a beating to”, but when Mainlanders start rushing to HK to borne their babies to ensure their children will be able to access HK education and get HK citizenship, or snatching up all the infant formulas and bed space in hospitals, or overheating the property and real estate markets, many of the local HK can no longer tolerate because it truly affects their standards of living.

The Video:  Comments to the incident on MTR made by a “so called” professor at the university of Beijing; very brash and rude languages used and repeatedly stating people of HK are dogs.  After his comments caused huge debates and tensions between people living in HK and China, he went on interviews saying he has NEVER CALLED PEOPLE IN HK DOGS when it was repeatedly said in the video.  Go figures!

His Comment:  If people in HK are discriminating against people in China, then let China not supply you people with water, vegetables, rice, let’s see how you survive

My Comment:  products supplied from China is constantly contaminated that there is no confidence for products that are “made in China”.  This vote of “no confidence” is not just from HK, but the rest of the world as well.  As a tax-free capitalist city, China is not the only place HK source or trade with, I do not believe people in HK will starve if China is to stop supplying their produce and goods.  I believe many people in HK prefer to purchase overseas brands, because there is no confidence with the quality of products made in China.

His Comment:  There is nothing special about HK, all the advantages that HK used to have, well Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen are all catching up.  If it is not for people in China coming to HK to travel and to shop, you will be nothing, you cannot survive!

My Comment:  While tourism is a big part of HK economy, HK is also known as the financial centre and logistics hub in Asia.  While I believe majority of people in HK enjoy visitors and tourists from different parts of the world, what they do not enjoy is Mainland tourists coming to HK to buy milk powder, bottled water, cooking oil, and daily necessities to carry back to China because they do not believe in goods made in China.  While people in HK should pity and feel sorry for Mainlanders, at the end of the day, they are only left feeling frustrated because these insane volume purchases left babies in HK constantly without milk powder.  While tourists from Mainland might think they are doing HK a favor by pouring tourism money into the city, many people in HK feel they are worse off because their buying habits created many additional side effects such as landlord requesting additional rent, property prices exploding, and in turn, prices of goods rise because retailers need to pay high rent.  If one is to walk down the main tourist districts of Causeway Bay or Tsim Sha Tsui, they have all became shopping strips of high-end brands such as LV, Chanel, and Gucci, because only these international brands can pay the ridiculous rents requested.  Many outlets tailored to local HK people such as supermarkets and movie theatres are forced to close doors to make ways for these International brands.  So, at the end of the day, are these tourist money really doing the city a favor?

His Comment:  Why is HK clean?  It is because there is laws there that penalized people who litter.  The reason the city is in good shape is because it is regulated by laws, not because of the quality of the people who live in the city.  For a city to be regulated by laws tells me that the quality of the people is low because they cannot regulate themselves.  If they are not beaten, they will not be good.  One word to describe this behavior:  SHIT

My Comment:  Last time I checked, there is a law and regulating system in China, but of course, rather the people abide to it or not is another thing completely.  If following the laws mean the people in that place are of low quality, I would be happy in any law-abiding countries, because at least what is “right” and what is “wrong” are clearly stated.  If urinating and defeating in public, jumping a line, or pushing your way into public transportation are the acts of high quality people, I am happy to be considered low quality and need to be regulated by laws.

My thought:  I do acknowledge there is a certain degree of discrimination against people from China in HK, and that is nothing to be proud of.  At the end of the day, the common root is we are all Chinese people with brown eyes, black hair, and yellow skin.  I think everyone wants to be united and be proud to say HK is part of China, but I also believe that day will only come when some of the people from the Mainland can learn to “fine tune” their attitudes, behavoirs, thinking, and beliefs.  When living in HK, I always frowned and shake my head at some of the outrageous behaviors I witness from Mainland tourists.  I believe if you want people to accept you and to treat you civilly, you also need to behavior and act in a manner that allow others to respect you.  It is unfortunate seeing all these conflicts between people from the mainland and HK, but I honestly do not think they will stop.  If anything, I believe these conflicts will only escalate and get worst with all the pent-up anger and frustration from people in HK.  I believe a lot of local HK people feel like their way of living, their standard of living, their self-image and belief are being eroded as more and more Mainlanders come to HK and “impose” their way of living, thinking, and behavior to the HK mass.  There is a strong belief and hidden understanding in HK that the locals need to continue to show tolerance and acceptance to behaviors and acts they cannot accept from Mainlanders, and they are suffering as their image and quality of Chinese people is eroded at the international platform.

During the video, the professor has said repeatedly that HK people have been colonized so long by Britian that they have forgotten they are part of China.  From my point of view, I am happy to see Hong Kong returned to China in 1997 because indeed HK is a part of China and so this port city should not be governed by foreign forces.  However, at the same time, the reason it is not possible for HK and the rest of China to “merge” together and for the people living in these places to “merge” and see each other as so-called “the same” is because EVERYONE NEEDS TO UNDERSTAND HK and China are indeed different.  When a developed and metropolitan city is to merge with a giant that is still developing, with lots of issues to human rights, corruption, and people with very different culture, mindset and beliefs; it is not truly possible to just “merge”.  People in HK freak out when they see on TV local citizens living in Beijing needs to be trained to form lines to get on buses because you do not just all blindly push and run onto a bus when it arrives.  This episode happened before the Beijing Olympics.   The following statement I am about to make is always and constantly playing in the minds of people living in HK, which is “I feel like I am downgrading myself by saying I am part of China rather than saying I am Hong Kong”.  I believe this statement runs very true to people living in Taiwan as well.

The Video:

Some comments from people and government of HK:

The Elephant Parade

162 life-size elephant sculptures were spotted in Singapore as an environmental awareness campaign for the conservation of elephants.  I had the pleasure of meeting all these very creatively designed elephant sculptures where they were all featured for a final showing at the Botanic Gardens.  Below are some of my favorite:

This is my favorite elephant, how creative! It made me started craving durian and I ate one afterwards!

the angry bird one is pretty cool too, it attracts lots of kids to take photos with it

it's a plushie elephant

hees, this elephant spots a tuft of fine black hair

I am exhausted!

Can a person run on adrenaline for over a month?  Apparently it’s quite possible.  I am proof, but the price is exhaustion and bags under the eyes, but the benefit is you fall asleep within seconds of hitting the sack!  Ever since returning from apartment hunting in Singapore at the end of July, I have been running on turbo preparing for the 5 day food expo that just ended yesterday.

During the food expo, as with my colleagues, I stood for over 10 hours a day helping to man the booth while promoters sell to over 300,000 visitors a day.  During the first 3 days of the expo, I spend majority of my time cutting little pieces of candy for food tasting, but the worst is the last two days when I traded my post with the guy cutting instantly to eat ice-cream.  That post is not fun!  Cutting over 2000 pieces of ice-cream a day make your finger completely rigid and swollen, and I am still recovering from movement immobility!

So why did I trade my post of cutting candy to cutting ice-cream?  Because a lot of little girls find the guy cutting ice-cream cute and supposedly looking like Louis Koo (Chinese artist), so I pimp him out!  Yes, I made him stand outside the booth waving candies and attracting teenage girls to buy while giggling.  Later he told me girls were asking for his number and asking him to take pictures.  So at the end of each day, I told him to walk around the exhibition ground to ask for free food to bring back for us to eat.  For 5 days, I have also transformed into a gigalo and pimped him out.  I honestly don’t even find him cute, just a regular looking guy, but the aunties working at the next booth keep checking him out in leering and pervy ways, they keep giving him food to eat!  Hmmm….The promoters and myself included can get the crowd emotionally high and charged, but it is very exhausting.  There were a number of high and funny moments.   One auntie type lady insisted jovially she will only buy ice-cream if the guy will eat ice-cream in font of her, lol.  One of the promoters decide to blow a kiss to a male customer when he buys candy.  So hilarious when he told her to not do that at night, hahaha.  Yes, I decided to pimp for a few hours a day on the side.

One of my other colleague has it even worse, since he’s responsible for freezing the ice-cream with dry ice before serving.   For 5 days, 10 hours a day, he repeatedly keel to the ground shoveling dry ice, packing, and then pouring ice-cream onto the counter, and then the process starst all over again every 20 minutes.  Aside from inhaling in excessive amount of carbon dioxide, he is suffering from lots of spine pain, and I believe he’s currently getting massages.

Finally today is a rest day for me, just running little errands, but tomorrow is a full day of packing and arranging my goods into “move to Singapore” and “move to new apt in HK” before my tenant moves in on Sat.  I am exhausted, I really am.

the night before food expo

It’s the annual food expo again happening at the exhibition centre in Wanchai.  Consumers are treated to a large exhibition with tons of food products and eats, but do you know what it’s like the night before when all the exhibitors are madly finishing up the booth and stocking in preparation for opening day?

Minutes in the limelight took days after days of hard work and stress….and there will be lots of stress and unexpected circumstances when the show begins….

of course i'll show my best side...9 hrs of work, not done yet still!

Stanley cup embarassement

I have never quite picked up on the sport of hockey or follow the Canucks obsessively; however, being from Vancouver and how all my friends have posted all these pictures of the riots that happened in Downtown Vancouver on Facebook, I want to add my few cents.

Haha, I actually don’t have much to say, except it really is very embarrassing because Vancouver is supposed to be Beautiful British Columbia, and what happened after the game is so damn ugly.  Vancouver has lost more than just the Stanley Cup, it has lost its image of a lovely and beauty city, and the image of  friendly and easy-going citizens. 

I need to point out these ugly violent hooligans most certainly do not represent the city, they have caused enough damage to paint the city black.  Though many volunteers showed up to clean up messy Downtown, I point my finger at the incompetent police force.  I mean, rather the Canucks win or lose, you can imagine what Downtown could become after such a big event.  I mean, you have fans and everyone that live in Vancouver all pumped up and excited, there were all these games that led up to the final playoff, how can you not be prepared?  No amount of justification, lame excuses, and pushing of responsibilities could make be say the police is doing their job.

Well, on to a brighter note, look at this picture, I can’t stop laughing, people there really are crazy, lol.  I wonder if she had a chance to flash after the game, hees.

Lion dance celebrating a new shop opening

It is traditional practice for a new shop to hire martial arts groups to perform the lion dance at the opening ceremony.  The colorful costumes, loud clanging of drums and gongs, and the dancing of the lion would attract many people to pause and enjoy the show and gather around the new shop. 

The climax of the lion dance is when it starts climbing the ladder to reach what is dangling at the top.  What dangles at the top is usually various slices of greens for the dragon as a snack after the dance.   Since there are people underneath the lion costume, the bosses and owners would usually dangle a $500 dollar bill as enticement for a vibrant and energetic dance.  People are attracted to the lion dance, but I was focusing my attention on the little bald guy in the blue costume with the fan.  His job is to keep waving the fan and do various little dances on his own, to encourage the dragon to climb the ladder and grab the money, hees.

Organic Produces: Farmfest 2011

The farmfest is a 3 days event to increase the public’s awareness of organic fresh produce farmed and produced in Hong Kong’s rural areas.  Because of intense competition and cheap prices of agricultural goods from China, many of the farms in rural parts of Hong Kong needs to change and transform in order to survive.  Many of these farms have transformed into Ecotours farm sites to attract people to visit over the weekends, serving visitors fresh produce lunches and a tour around the farm.  Many of the visitors are also encouraged to plant and harvest something of their own during their trips.  Other farms have transformed into greenhouse farming or organic farming to possess a niche to avoid head-on price competition with produces from China. 

I support the concept of eating healthy and introducing more organic goods that are produced locally is a great concept; however, I feel that they do lack in variety.  There are at least 30 to 40 stands at Farmfest that sell fresh produce, and I notice they all have the same variety of greens, potatoes, and melon assortments.  I wish they could expand their varieties, maybe the soil in Hong Kong could only produce those types of vegetables and fruits?

Organic Fresh Produce


very cute turnip heads


i was told the white color melon is a HK/local breed that cannot be found elsewhere

one of the HK vareity of pumpkins has very dark colored skin


the wintermelon is very good for cooling in the summer

i love taro bubble tea

more turnips

i think if the vendors wipe and clean off the dirt from their produce before selling, it looks so much more attractive

i love sugarcane juice

bunches of banana

cactus on the right & aloe on the left~this one stand is a bit different


Other interesting products at Farmfest

i use to love munching on these BBQ flavor & original flavor slices of squids before I understand health & cholesterol

colorful sugar icing cookies, the cookie itself is really bland but because it can give children sugar high from the icing, kids love it

very plain & dry crackers that stick to your throat, in Chinese, it is called the "belly button" crackers because of its shape


american ginseng

crazy! this is a bottle of wine marinated with bees


The annual BUY BUY BUY Expo

This year is the 45th year of the Hong Kong Brands & Products Expo that is held annually as an open market bazaar at Victoria Park, Causeway Bay Hong Kong.  This 23 days event (Dec 11th to Jan 3rd) attracts lots of housewives to go on a major shopping spree of cooking oil, rice, noodles, and soya sauce; and with the appreciating RMB, many Mainland tourists are specifically coming to Hong Kong to spend on these daily items.  This is definitely a hit event because customers are more willing to spend during the holidays, and through various marketing gimmicks offered by exhibitors offering $1HKD items such as reishi pills, chicken essence, instant noodles, bath gels, etc– customers will hoard these booths.  Clearly these gimmicks are based on restricted quantity, but the deals awaken the “OMG, this is CHEAP CHEAPT CHEAP!” lighbulb in consumers so I guess the gimmick work.  I am more impressed with the organizer’s delivery services for a very small fee when spending $500HKD at the expo, I think this is very good, especially since many of the shoppers arrive on buses or  the MTR.

Images of the crowds

I am not a fan of congested shopping or paying $10HKD less just to be pushed, bumped, and stepped on, so I visited the expo at a time I believe has the lowest amount of people traffic.  From the pictures, clearly it’s still relatively packed, but at least, I can still walk about and pause every once in awhile for some pictures.  Since my company will be participating at the expo next year, it is a good idea to walk around and see what marketing gimmicks work and could capture consumers’ hearts.

Hong Kong Brands that are familiar to all locals


the familiar brand of condiments & sauces such as black bean paste, xo sauce, BBQ pork sauce, satay sauce, etc


hong kong people's sliced bread


Garden's Bread is a household name


another famous local brand of condiment & sauces~I prefer this brand over Lee Kum Kee because it is made in HK and not China


Notable for its frozen yougurt, expanded into ice cream, carries a range of overseas Southeast Asia's brands of ice-cream desserts

canola oil, corn oil, sunflower oil, peanut oil...moving into the healthy sector with olive oil, grapeseed oil, etc

As with any big events that draw large crowds, there needs to be lots of food stands available to cure hungry stomachs

a bowl of sticky rice with preserved sausages for sale


a local favorite: "siu miu" made of fish paste and flour, somehting chewy with soy sauce and chili sauce

we love our street snacks dunked in rich thick sauces

we love bubble tea~i love the taste of fake taro


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