2012-11-19 A day on Cheung Chau

19 11 2012

We headed over to Cheung Chau on the 19th for a bit of a walk, fish balls, gai dan zai and a big family dinner… It’s a great island to visit with always SOMETHING good to shoot.

1. IFC II reaches up into the clouds in Central District, Hong Kong

Build up until you reach the Gods! by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

2) Wedding announcements!

Marriage announcements! by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

3) Yue Dan, or Fish balls on a stick – a Cheung Chau fave

Yue Dan – Fish Balls! by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

Yue Dan – Fish Balls! by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

4) The old fashioned way

The good old way by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

5) 
Workhorses by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

6) The Dragon

Dragon by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

7) The Ghost King at the Cheung Chau temple

Scene from the Cheung Chau Temple by DragonSpeed, on Flickr

The whole day of fun can be found in the flickr set:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dragons…57632051784735

I hope you enjoy them!





2012-11-09 Beng Melea – the coolest of the temples

14 11 2012

Early in the morning, before breakfast, Mrs D headed down to the lobby to get her WiFi fix…

Sure enough, the un-airconditioned lobby was where I found her, happily connected to the outside world.

We had a good breakfast and then we headed out at 0830 to go see the cool temple.  It’s the REAL Indiana Jones/Tomb Raider Temple. None of that Hollywood "pseudo-ruins”  This is the real thing.  But first…. a stop along the way to see some rice harvesting.  Of course the kids have other plans:

The parents, however, were hard at work with sickle in hand, harvesting bundles of rice to dry along the side of the field

Many things still go the “old-fashioned way”, including transport as this gentleman with the oxcart passed us while we were shooting

Some things are a mix of modern and old… this guy was taking his pigs to the market

Ewww.

We arrived at the temple grounds are were reminded of Cambodia’s horrible past:

yes, that’s over 1200 pieces of things that go boom that they have cleared from the temple area. A not-so subtle reminder to stay on the beaten track.

The temple was amazing.  There were piles of stones lying around and complete galleries had collapsed under their own weight into a neat “implosion” of stones.  I’ll stop the talking and let you see:

Collapsed Walkway:

Someone that felt more at home that people would:

Mrs Dragonspeed in what used to be a hallway

The Jungle taking back the temple

Roots and moss reclaim nature’s prize

Forgotten artwork

A most surreal scene

In the grasp..

I could go on forever with more pictures of this truly INCREDIBLE place, but you can see the set of photos from the day at:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dragonspeed/sets/72157632005287691/with/8184550747/

I hope you find them as amazing as I did.

Tomorrow, I’ll write a bit about the floating village, as well as the birdwatching!





2012-11-07 Angkor Wat Temples

10 11 2012

I must start by apologizing.  I have been wiped out by the heat and humidity every day. It has caused me to fall further behind in blogging than I would like.  That being said, I have finally finished up with the photos from the 7th.  We toured a bunch of the temples on the “grand route” around the Angkor Wat complex.  They were cool.  One was even the one where they shot Tomb Raider with Angelina Jolie!  It made for a really long and HOT day, but it was worth it.

The set is located at:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dragonspeed/sets/72157631972471685/

Some of the highlights of the best are below:

Wow!  So many good shots, didn’t know what to show… Still so many good ones left in the set!  Go see them! More later… probably once I get to Hong Kong tomorrow!





2012-11-06 Angkor Thom and Angkor Wat

7 11 2012

We got up at the ungodly hour of 0430 to catch a 0730 plane out out of Phnom Penh.  The hotel doesn’t have any food at that time, so no breakfast for us 😦

Getting to Siem Reap was generally uneventful, highlighted only by the fact that you walk of the wonderfully air-conditioned plane onto the tarmac what was just missing a bit of oil for frying eggs!  At 0900, it was already 28C!

Our guide, a nice fellow, met us and we were whisked away to start the tour.  “What about breakfast"?” I asked, trying not to sound like Samwise Gamgee. 

“The hotel should provide breakfast, we don’t” was the answer…

“Oh”

We motored directly to the Angkor complex and got our picture ID tickets to have for our three days admission to the complex.  More heat.  A short drive later we hop out and start the sauna.  We took some great pictures of the South Gate of Angkor Thom.

We then proceeded over to the Bayon Temple of Angkor Thom.  Our guide explained the may bas-relief around the temples, as well as the carvings. 

Mrs D nose to nose with the Buddha!

Wow – I am now totally confused regarding the different Hindu Gods. Perhaps one day, my friend Hiren can explain more fully.  I have visions of multi armed, multi eyed guys swimming in my brain.  Also multiheaded snakes and half naked dancing women… Wow… So much in one day.  

After going through the Bayon temple, we decided to try an elephant ride.  Sort of a “bucket list” kind of thing.  Well – scratch that off, and don’t expect me to do it very often in the future.. What a BUMPY ride! 

We did, however, get some good angles for some of our best pictures of the Bayon temple.   We continued to see various other temples of the Angkor Thom complex,but damned if I can remember what they were!  We had a brief downpour, but it let up, leaving just dark clouds around.  Like I wasn’t wet enough from the heat already!

Seriously sweating by now, and weak from lack of food, we headed over to a restaurant near Angkor Wat for lunch.  It was neat – you could actually see the towers of Angkor Wat from the restaurant.  I think I had 4 Sprites in an attempt to rehydrate and sugar up!  The food was good, but I think our 2nd day lunch in Phnom Penh outshone this stuff.

We proceeded to the temple of Angkor Wat next.

Angkor Wat is a “Mountain Temple” which means there are a crapload of stairs to climb to get to the top, most holy area.  Wow.. STEEP STEPS! 

We took lots of interesting pictures of the temple and from the temple before heading home.

Mrs D – the Dancer 🙂

Dinner was out at a restaurant that included dancing entertainment and a “Typical Cambodian” buffet.  The food was pretty bland.  Apparently “Tourist version” of “Typical Cambodian” is not as good as the Real Thing.

The evening's entertainment

The evening's entertainment

The dancers were good and the the whole evening went well. We got back to our room around 2100 after stopping to get some beer at the supermarket ($0.65/can!) rather than have to pay $2 down at the hotel lobby bar.

Then it was off to bed – more temples to tour on the 7th!

I put up 54 photos from the day at my flickr page:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dragonspeed/sets/72157631951737846/





Hong Kong 2011-11-21

22 11 2011
Hong Kong Skyline by nightFish at the marketLunch with my inlawsTemple in AberdeenTemple in AberdeenTemple in Aberdeen
Temple in AberdeenTemple in AberdeenTemple in AberdeenTemple in AberdeenMong Kok at 10 am... still busy.Evening on Nathan Road
Canon's service centre in HKHong Kong Skyline by nightHong Kong Skyline by nightHong Kong Skyline by nightHong Kong Skyline by nightHong Kong Skyline by night
Hong Kong Skyline by nightHong Kong Skyline by nightMuk Muk and Duck Duck take the Star FerryIFC OneMuk Muk and Duck Duck take the Star Ferry

Hong Kong 2011-11-21, a set on Flickr.

We spent the morning with the inlaws around Aberdeen. We had lunch and dropped into a local temple for a look around and then headed down to pick up our 17-55 f/2.8IS that we had dropped in to Canon a few days ago. it was ready to pick up. Not like Canon Canada that seems to delight in taking weeks to get things back! Wow… nice speed Canon HK!

From Canon, it was a short hop over to the star ferry pier in Kowloon to shoot the lights of central after sunset. What a lovely city! That’s gotta take a lot of coal to keep those lights burning though.

After a long day walking, it was good to get home.








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