Farewell 2015

Dear 2015,

every year I plan to write a farewell at the end of the year, and every year I fail miserably at it. It seems to be a ‘dinner for one‘ joke (… the same procedure as every year…) and to be honest, I am ok with that. It gives me time to review 2015 properly.

Hong Kong NYE fireworks 2014-5

I won’t lie, it was a very exciting but also challenging year. Lots happened, and a few things stayed the same. The biggest highlight is our little girl Lina, who just turned one!

Our cat Sam lives happily with us, in our new flat (yes we moved again, but we are still in Hong Kong) and we travelled to Germany, Japan and Thailand a few times in 2015. I made many new friends, and sadly also lost some (who moved away from Hong Kong). I finally gave in and cancelled my Cantonese lessons, but I did try to take more pictures this year – although more (Lina) portraits than (Hong Kong) street shots.

Living in Wan Chai 3

In January our world was turned upside down with the arrival of little Lina.

Lina Jan 2015

So needless to say that we spent that precious time at home, with our little family and also my parents who visited us. We did a few excursions, mainly to museums (such as the Hong Kong Museum of History and its fantastic exhibition about the Tsar and his family) and art galleries – and I used the time to write up some of the hikes we completed in December, visits to new restaurants (two of my favourites: Quest by Que and 22 Ships) and one of the best photo exhibitions I had seen in Hong Kong: Ho Fan.

Aberdeen Nature Trail 1

Aberdeen Nature Trail 8 Lower Reservoir

Aberdeen Tin Hau Temple 4

Tsarskoye Selo 1 in the Hong Kong History Museum

A Hong Kong Memoir by Ho Fan Exhibition 3

In February, I completed a great jamu and abdominal binding treatment that helped me quickly to get back into my pre-pregnancy shape and made me feel much better and relaxed. Together with a few home yoga classes and the first of many mum & baby yoga classes I felt ready to battle the world – and that meant a busy period around Chinese New Year, with my mother-in-law visiting and lots of sightseeing and eating.

Pacific Place CNY Decorations 2015-4

Living Room Museum Lion Dance exhibition 5

Victoria Lunar Flower Market 2015-6 Cow's Udder

Victoria Lunar Flower Market 2015-4 Valentine's Day

Victoria Lunar Flower Market 2015-3 Orchids

We did not celebrate all 15 days, but we had a very good time watching lion dances, going to the flower markets and lantern displays and looking at shopping mall displays to celebrate the year of the wood goat/sheep/ram.

Year of the Goat 2

And most importantly, our little hairy fellow Sam turned two years old!

Sam the Cat 2014-7

Sam the Cat 2014-8

Sam the Cat 2014-12

In March, Lina and I ventured out and about. We tried out different playgroups and met her new best friend, Alessandro:

Lina and Alessandro April 2015

Apart from playdates and long walks, we spent our time visiting the Discovery Bay Handmade Market, went on a Wan Chai tour by Walk in Hong Kong that is very recommendable, admired art work at Art Central and Art Basel, and tried out new places for lunch including OVO Cafe, Pomme, Oh Food and our new favourite Japanese restaurant: Mizuki.

Hopewell Centre 1

Pak Tai Temple 1

Blue House in Wan Chai 2

Art Basel in Hong Kong 2015-24

Art Central Hong Kong 2015 Parallel Meditation Password by Yang Tao 2

Art Central Hong Kong 2015 Healing Blossoms by Ran Hwang

Mizuki Japanese Restaurant 3

At the end of March, my mum came to visit us and little Lina again – and a great opportunity to visit the Kowloon Walled City Park again, as well as explore new (to me) sights in Hong Kong, including the Hong Kong Wetland Park, the City Gallery and the MingCha tea house.

Kowloon Walled City Park April 2015-2

Kowloon Walled City Park April 2015-1

Hong Kong Wetlands Park 9

City Gallery Hong Kong 2

On the Right Track exhibition at City Gallery Hong Kong 5

MingCha Tea House 2

The weather was beautiful and we seized the opportunity to go on as many walks as possible, including this one from Deep Water Bay to Repulse Bay. I had never been to the Tin Hau temple there or had Lab Made Ice Cream before, so that was fun to try out.

Deep Water Bay to Repulse Bay Stroll 7

Deep Water Bay to Repulse Bay Stroll 5

Deep Water Bay to Repulse Bay Stroll 3

Deep Water Bay to Repulse Bay Stroll 2

Tin Hau Temple Repulse Bay 1

Lab Made Ice Cream Repulse Bay 1

We spent April back home in Germany, before we went on a short getaway to The Surin in Phuket.

The Surin 3

The Surin 5

Also in May I discovered new fruits: Chinese strawberry and Langsat. I ate plenty of ice cream (Happy Cow, ISEE and Ice’licious), and took Lina swimming (it was already sunny and hot in Hong Kong). I tried my luck again at the affordable art fair, but it was still too expensive!

Chinese Strawberry Waxberry Yumberry 2

Langsat 1

Affordable Art Fair Hong Kong 2015-8

Affordable Art Fair Hong Kong 2015-13

Isee Ice Cream 7

Icelicious 8

June saw us travelling to Germany again, while we spent July in art galleries and in Tokyo (yes, these posts are long overdue!). Lina started to become much more active and mobile, and I had less and less time to blog!

Balthus at Gagosian Hong Kong 2

Jockey Club Community Arts Biennale 2015 ArtisTree 8

Jockey Club Community Arts Biennale 2015 ArtisTree 2

In August, we picked up hiking again – and this lead us to the Dragon’s Back, Big Wave Bay and Shek O numerous times. We also re-explored the walks around the Peak and the Aberdeen reservoir areas, and I went a few times to Discovery Bay to meet up with new friends and their babies.

Shek O Blue Bridge August 2015-7

Big Wave Bay August 2015-2

Big Wave Bay August 2015-1

Dragon's Back Hike August 2015-7

Dragon's Back Hike August 2015-5 Tai Tam

Dragon's Back Hike August 2015-2 Shek O

Dragon's Back Hike August 2015-1 Shek O

Fast forward to September and again, my parents were in town. Together with Lina we explored some museums that we were not familiar with. Off we went to the Racing museum, Mei Ho House and the Hong Kong Housing Authority exhibition. We enjoyed the new exhibition at the Hong Kong Museum of History about the Rise of the Celestial Empire and the William Lim exhibition at the ArtisTree.

The Hong Kong Racing Museum Sep 2015-10

The Hong Kong Racing Museum Sep 2015-2

The Hong Kong Racing Museum Sep 2015-0

Mei Ho House Sep 2015-17

Mei Ho House Sep 2015-14

Mei Ho House Sep 2015-8

Hong Kong Housing Authority Exhibition Sep 2015-2

The Rise of the Celestial Empire Hong Kong Museum of HIstory Sep 2015-6

The Rise of the Celestial Empire Hong Kong Museum of HIstory Sep 2015-2

William Lim Fundamental ArtisTree Sep 2015-5

William Lim Fundamental ArtisTree Sep 2015-1

We also explored the area around the Peak more (thanks to this great book tip here!) and walked around Sai Ying Pun, now that it is so convenient to get to via the new MTR stops. We tried Craft Beer & Co and back in Wan Chai, Beef & Liberty.

Mural at Sai Ying Pun Station August 2015-6

Mural at Sai Ying Pun Station August 2015-11

Craft Brew and Co in Sai Ying Pun August 2015-1

Beef & Liberty Hong Kong 2015-5

We went back to Tokyo in October and I had big plans to write about this trip, together with our July trip, but that’s still in the pipeline. With an unexpected move and four weeks’ time to find a new place, I put my blog on the back burner. We managed to find a new place and move in within three weeks’ time (phew!) but that meant a lot of planning, logistics and a little bit of panic!

So far only my post about strolling through Akasaka is live. More to come. I hope!

Tokyo Hie Shrine 2015-4

Tokyo New Otani Hotel Garden 2015-2

Tokyo Toyokawa Inari Shrine 2015-7

November saw us settling in, a quick weekend trip to Bangkok, I tried a Tai Chi lesson with friends and lots more playdates and activities for Lina – including a visit to Disneyland Hong Kong.

Lina and Alesandro November 2015

Disneyland November 2015

Tai Chi November 2015

Suddenly December arrived, and with that my parents came to us so we could all go for a week to Khao Lak (yes we love the Marriott there). We had an amazing time there, and then came back to a lovely Christmas and New Year’s period in Hong Kong – and with that 2015 suddenly ended and Lina turned one. What a whirlwind this year has been!

Khao Lak Dez 2015 2

Khao Lak Dez 2015 1

Christmas December 2015

Christmas December 2015 2

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3 responses to “Farewell 2015

  1. Die Bilder sind fantastic, am besten gefallen mir von Deiner Mutter und Lina. Natuerlich auch mit Dir, aber Deine Mutter ist so gluecklich die kleine Lina zu tragen!
    Elfriede

  2. Lina has sure grown fast!
    I really like the idea of doing a review post at the end of the year… it helps remember how much has been accomplished!

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