.: Tibet Anger
I'm very angry and severely disappointed at the actions and words of the Chinese in Australia and the rest of the world who wish to crush those who criticise China. It's not that I hate China, because I don't, nor that I think that Tibet should be independent, because that is a complex issue with no simple solution. What I dislike so much is their hypocrisy, their unthinking acceptance of whatever they are told and their racist attitudes. In many ways they remind me a lot of those stupid, racist rioters at Cronulla. They deign to believe they speak for all those of Chinese ancestry and it's their way or the highway.
There is an unwritten law in Australia, in most western countries, that these pro-Chinese have broken. It is this: you may campaign publicly for greater rights, no matter how silly the cause, but not to restrict rights. The reason is because the street marches to restrict people's rights smells of fascism. That is better left for talkback radio. (Of course there are many decisions made by our government to restrict rights, just look at the criminal and security laws).
The pro-China groups do not speak for all Chinese. Chinese people, especially those outside of China, have many beliefs and opinions. I could use my wife as an example. I have often heard China state that Western countries have no right to interfere in their domestic politics, but they seem to have no problem interfering with groups such as the pro-Tibet lobby and the annoying Falun Gong in other countries.
The recent holiday to Hong Kong, China and Japan (hereafter referred to as HKCJ07) was our ninth overseas. Each trip is special for its own experiences, but I have favourites whose memories I savour. On each holiday I want to recapture the essence of what made those favourite holidays so special. Unfortunately, much as I enjoyed our recent holiday I don't think I can classify it as in the top three and I think it's important to find out why.
Without any doubt the gold standard in my holiday memories is our honeymoon in Paris. Nothing can compare to the joy of just getting married, the utter contentment we both felt. I doubt that we can ever recapture the amazement of seeing Paris for the first time either. One aspect that I thought contributed a lot to that trip was spending the night before in a good hotel overlooking the airport. By doing so we eliminated that last minute rush to pack and get to the airport, allowing us to savour the trip there. The outlook across the airport also served to whet the appetite.
On our previous trip to Japan, which is probably the second best holiday overall, we also spent the night prior to departure in a hotel. The last minute work completed in the hotel and the very early start somewhat negated the positive aspects of the hotel stay, but it still offered that crucial break before the journey's beginning.
I spend a lot of time considering the beginnings of journeys as I often find the excitement of being underway to be the most memorable aspect of a trip. We didn't stay in a hotel prior to flying out on our HKCJ07 holiday. Instead I spent the day at work furiously trying to complete my projects while B stayed at home. There was the pleasant aspect of a farewell lunch with friends as well as the feeling of the journey beginning as I walked out of my workplace into the late afternoon light.
My Hong Kong, China and Japan holiday blog is at http://allriteinasia.blogspot.com/. Click on the photo to view the gallery (link updated as the gallery has been moved to Picasaweb).
As usual it's near panic stations as we rapidly approach our trip to Hong Kong, China and Japan. You would think that we have it all down pat by now, but each time we decide to do things just that much differently. It is partly due to the destination; we may need to be more independent in China than Japan or Europe, security concerns also differ between locations. Our holiday strategies also evolve. This time we are trying to travel lighter. Yet travelling lighter involves purchasing a new backpack, lighter, faster drying clothes. Independence and rougher conditions mean travel towels, inner sheets, TraveLAN medicine to guard against illness, a Swiss Army knife for situations that scream for multifunction gadgets.
I've been busy with last minute household chores, purchases, going to the doctor (it's all good), ripping music and movies into formats suitable for travel and searching for plugs, locks, cables and all the other bits and pieces that go in the luggage. In the meantime I've barely been at work, having been kicked out of the office due to safety worries again.
I'm tired and I appear to be sick, just before we are leaving. It has reminded me of how important leisure time is. The pleasure of sitting down and watching TV or reading a novel. I overdosed on travel books the other week and needed to read a decent science fiction story.
There has been fun as well. Last Sunday we took Kita and the in-laws' two cavalier king charles spaniels down to the beach at Kurnell. Kita took one look at the water and ran straight in. He loved it! We are going to miss him so much while we are on holidays.
Now, time to mow the lawn, wash to fish tank etc, etc, etc...
"Shanghai, a coastal haven located midway on China's mainland..." - CNTO Tourist Map of Shanghai
And I always imagined a coastal haven to be a small town on the beach...
The Korea Tourism Organisation's Korea Seoul Tourist Map's Jeju-si City section displays one location as the Myeongdoam Tourist Recuperation Pasture. Somewhere to graze after a holiday? For our friends across the Tasman?
Only one month to go!
Last Saturday Flight Centre held another of their Travel Expos at Darling Harbour. Unable to resist, we caught the train down to the city for a look-see. We picked up some free maps of Shanghai, Beijing and Tianjin, along with brochures for Macau. The $1500 fare to Paris via Shanghai with China Eastern Airlines was back, along with some good JAL deals to Asia as well. Very tempting and we could have waited to purchase our airfares instead of going with Cathay Pacific. Oh well...
"If you are my bosom friend in the world, then let's meet each other in International Hotel." - Yichang International Hotel website