Thursday, 11 December 2008

Musings About Macau Pt 2

My apologies for the delay in getting this out. I've been working on a lot of editing of several recent photo shoots and had another **ahem** wonderful trip to Immigration. The trip this time was nothing like before. Quite boring. No story to tell, other than on my way home a kid of about seven or eight years old walked beside the taxi I was riding in, stood on the curb, pulled his pants down, crouched, and proceeded to take a sh@t right there on the sidewalk beside me!

Eeeeewwwwwww!

If that weren't bad enough, as I was almost home, the taxi crossed some railroad tracks near the train platform where I witnessed yet another kid doing the same thing on the tracks!!

What was it that day that everybody decides to do their number twos in public while in my range of sight?!

Eeeeewwwwwww!

Anyway, back to Macau...where I didn't see anything like that!

The hill climb up to St. Paul's was just the halfway point. We still had the rest of the hill to climb.

Oh joy.

What's up top?

The Mount Fortress. The Portuguese built it in the 17th century and it is now a museum.From it we could look down upon the ruins of St. Paul's.And we had great views that enabled us to see clear to China! That sounds impressive (doesn't it?) until you realize Macau doesn't sit all that far off the coast of mainland China. It isn't really off the coast at all; just kind of across the river...whatever!
Remember the story of The Little Engine That Could?Like the Little Engine That Could, I think this canon (or whoever aimed it) has the right idea!Now if only it could strike far enough! (I think I can-I think I can...) Gosh, that's an ugly building!

Anyway, then we made it down, down, down a very narrow street on this steep hill (one-way traffic only - down!), into a taxi, and off to another side of Macau to see more wonderful historic structures, but a bit less touristy.



And we just kept on going until sundown.


We made it to A-Ma Temple just after it closed, which was OK, because even from outside I could see the wonderful incense burning.

A-Ma Temple has an interesting history, and it shows how the European colonial mindset worked. When the Portuguese settlers arrived in the sixteenth century and asked the name of the place, they were at the temple area and were told "A-Ma Gau", the name of the temple. This was then transcribed by the settlers as "Macau", and they've been calling the territory by the name of the temple ever since! Just like Christopher Columbus didn't set out to find a "New World". He was looking for India. He was just lost; which is why we call native Americans "Indians".

Next was a nice Portuguese dinner at a popular nearby restaurant, complete with Filipino staff who let Edson in on why our reservations had been lost (manager doesn't write them down); speaking in Tagalog so the boss wouldn't know what they were saying!After dinner it was a quick ride back to the port so we could get back to Hong Kong (Remember Hong Kong? This is -supposedly- our trip to Hong Kong.)

This is what you see at the port at night.I know astronauts can see the Great Wall of China from space. They might have to squint a little to make out the lettering on the Sands Casino.

Our last day in Hong Kong is coming up.

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