MangoVine
Adventures in East Asia

Entries in Sport

Pulau Tioman Part 3 - Snorkeling Excursion
On our second day at Pulau Tioman, we had booked a snorkeling excursion that lasted about three hours. I had never snorkeled before, had never swam in the sea and in fact, am not very good at swimming! So I at least, had to practise in the resort pool the day before.

Pulau-Tioman-Snork-Mark-Resort

We had to get up early for breakfast before meeting the boat for a 9am start. At the jetty, there was a massive shoal of fish sheltering in the shade. The closest I'd ever been to one was with sardines in a zoo tank, so seeing them live below us made me want to just jump right into the middle of them! (Save for the fact that I can't swim well.)

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Baseball Batting at Insadong
During our stroll down Insadong-gil, day turned to night as we passed what looked like an open-fronted garage but with the unavoidable sounds of lots of "bashing". Curious, we stared at this scene which appeared devoid of the source of sound, until we realised that all the noise came from above it.

Baseball-Underneath-Insadong

The net (seen above the space in the photo below) was capturing fallen baseballs and channeling them towards a funnel and hence the noise was coming from a baseball hitting facility above.

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Dragon Boat Racing at Shatin, New Territories
The 28th May, a Thursday, was a public holiday in Hong Kong. I thought this was a little strange, since people would still need to go back to work for one day on Friday. No long weekend for Hong Kongers!

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Anyway, it was this day that Dragon Boat Racing events were being held all over Hong Kong it seems. There were different tournaments, one near our village in Tai Po, which we were originally going to check out. There seems to be a major racing event at Stanley, South of Hong Kong Island, though Mr. Chan offered to take us to his local one in Shatin.

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Back in Hong Kong and straight to Physical Gym in Shatin
After the excess (although quite healthy, since there are less additives) food of Vietnam, the day after we came back to Hong Kong, we went to check out the closest gym we could find. Turns out to be one of Physical's branches in Shatin which is three stops away from our nearest station, Tai Po Market on the MTR.

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Back in 2007, we popped into a branch of California Gym (which is endorsed by Jackie Chan) over on Hong Kong Island, but that was really expensive, so our hopes for a good deal in Physical were not high.

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Bike riding in the New Territories
At Tai Mei Tuk, which is a place just down the road from where we're living in the New Territories, there are a couple of places to rent and buy bikes. It seems to be a popular pastime, and it seems there are bike lanes every where in the New Territories - certainly where we've been so far.

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Hong Kong seems to be encouraging a greener way to live, with cycling being one aspect of it. They're currently broadcasting adverts for them on TV and on the buses (tv advertising screens). Well, to be honest, they might have been doing this some time, since I'm still seeing other adverts which were broadcast when I was last here two years ago.

During the weekends, the bike lanes from Tai Mei Tuk, past our village and all the way to Tai Po, are full of cyclists, either in groups, pairs or on their own. The people are a mix of casual cyclists to more serious ones with racing bikes, helmets and the full cycling gear. This particular route is not surprisingly popular since its adjacent to the coast and its an easy and pleasant ride.

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