Thursday, August 17, 2006


After three days in Hong Kong we are now spending two days in Beijing. Unfortunately most men in China smoke. Not in the office, but definitely at lunch. So while I was locked away in a smokey dining room being slowly asphyxiated by my Chinese colleagues and customers, Marie was out visiting Tian'anmen Square (we've been here once before and already visited the two most popular sites, namely the Great Wall and the Forbidden City which are both fantastic).

Tonight we're going out with my colleagues to a local reasturant for - what else - Peking Duck!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

More old friends

We live in Colorado and our German friends Bert and Claudia live in Switzerland. So what would be the chance of meeting them on our flight from Brisbane to Hong Kong? About 100% it seems. So here we are out to dinner together in Hong Kong along with their kids Julian and Laura.

We had some great Chinese food, despite the fact that nobody in the restaurant seemed to speak any English, something which seems be more common in Hong Kong each time I return.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Hong Kong

We're back in Hong Kong this week, a year since we were last here. From Brisbane it's only a two hour time change and an 8.5 hour flight which is considerably easier than getting here from Steamboat.

We usually stay at the Excelsior Hotel in Causeway Bay and because we're regulars (including a ten week stay in 2001!) they often upgrade our room. This time we have a room with a wonderful harbour view of Kowloon. This was the view when we checked in last night (click the photo to enlarge).

And this is the view this morning.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Old friends

We have some friends who live in Madison, Wisconsin that we've been meaning to visit for the past five years without success. But we finally managed to catch up with them today - on the Gold Coast (for my US readers, that's in Queensland, Australia, a very long way from either Colorado or Winconsin)!

Dan Bromley is an economics professor at the University of Wisconsin. I haven't yet read his latest book. Trouble is, if I buy a copy from Amazon it might take another five years before I see him again and can get him to autograph it!

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Surfers Paradise

On our previous visit to Brisbane in April this year, we went to Tasmania to visit my parents. Fortunately on this trip they were taking a winter break at their apartment in Surfers Paradise which is only a one hour drive from Brisbane, so we were able to see them again. As you can see from this photo of me and my Dad, their place is right on the beach.

My Mum reckons that they see us more since we moved overseas than they did when we lived in Australia. I think it's true. You are more conscious of being away and needing to make and effort and as I've gotten older I think I've come to appreciate them more.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006


I'm back in Brisbane this week and enjoying the glorious Brisbane winter (day time maximums around 20C or 70F).

I pulled out my old rollerblades on the weekend and went out with my 10 year old nephew Alex which was just the right pace. Even though I used to rollerblade every day and was quite good, it's been about four years so I was a little rusty.

This morning I went out by myself and went quite a bit harder (if my boss is wondering why I'm not at the office on a Tuesday morning the answer is that I spent Friday night/Saturday morning on the plane back from Kuala Lumpur). I started off on my old route at the Kangaroo Point ferry terminal and along by the cliffs but then diverted across the Goodwill Bridge which wasn't there at the time, through the Botanic Gardens and then along the new floating walkway in New Farm which is where this picture was taken. The building in the background with the red/orange roof is where my wife and I used to live.

Yes, I know I need to loose a little weight around the middle. Why do you think I'm out there? Well apart from the fact that I've remembered that I really enjoy rollerblading. It's not skiing, but it is great-off season training for skiing, and you can go fast. I'll definitely be buying a new pair when I get back to Steamboat.