Transitioning from a life constantly on the go, moving around from one city to the next, living out of my suitcase for months at a time, to having my own comfy bed in a great flat with good friends in a lively city has been overwhelmingly wonderful. I’ve met some cool peeps, eaten the best food and have become somewhat of a cook myself. Mong Kok makes me happy and teaching kids feels so rewarding. Also, super exciting news, Kate and I have booked our Christmas trip to Koh Samui, Thailand for a 7 day detox cleanse which includes daily meditation, yoga and massages- and the best part is it’s super cheap. YAY.
Overnight oats: This craze has been all over the internet lately so I finally gave it a try, little did I know that the hype is so real. It is absolutely delicious (& nutritious!). I love breakfast bowls- all the possibilities of things you can put on top… I mush up one overripe banana, mix in 1/2 cup of dried rolled oats (mine have raisins mixed in), a teaspoon of coconut oil, a touch of water and loads of cinnamon. Stir and refrigerate overnight and voila! Breakfast is ready when you are. I’ve been topping mine with banana coins, blueberries and melted organic peanut butter. It’s seriously delicious and tastes like dessert. Give it a go, you’re welcome.
Work / office views: The Monkey Tree center I work at is called Island Resort, on the Eastern side of HK island. The office is located in a mall (surprise!- JK, malls are everywhere. Everything is in the mall. Gyms are in malls. ETC) It’s a bit far from Mong Kok, my stomping grounds, but the view makes it worth it. Benches line the waterfront and it’s where I go for my lunch and to enjoy a peaceful moment. Sometimes after work guys from the office go for beers on the pier, which entails cheap beer from Circle K -also inside mall- and sipping on the pier enjoying the city lights view in the distance. Not a bad way to end the day.
The Rice Box Lady: The rice box lady has a stall in a sketchy building near my work at Island Resort, accessed through a 7/11 backdoor. There are many stalls in this building serving local fare and selling dried nuts. However the rice box lady is special. She fills you up a box of either noodles or rice, and then has loads of choices to top it off with. Shredded beef, chicken, fish, bok choy, broccoli, cabbage, boiled eggs, egg rolls, spicy sauce and pumpkin, ETC. You can put as much as you want on top of your rice, all for one price of $27 HKD — which is the equivalent of $3.48 cents US. HOLY SH*T. It’s ridiculously cheap, mouthwatering food and enough for two meals. She had to use a rubber band to keep my box shut. The options are overwhelming! She’s my new lunch gal. Thanks Ryan!
Rice noodles topped with bok choy, broccoli, roasted pumpkin, shredded beef, spicy sauce, boiled egg, pork, and tons of veggies from the one and only rice box lady. All for $3.48, flat rate.
Grocery shopping at the Wet Market: I get all my produce from Wet Markets around town. There are a couple near my house. I usually go to the Fa Yuen St. Wet market but love the Kowloon city as well. A wet market sells fresh meat and produce whereas a dry market would sell durable items like clothes and electronics, which there’s also plenty of. Wet market shopping is a cheaper alternative to grocery shopping and the produce is guaranteed fresh. You can find everything from sweet potatoes, spices, to living lobster. I look forward to my Sunday shopping at the market every week ❤
Public Transport: OK, this is Admiralty station (near central) on a bad day. I had to wait in a massive que (5 trains?) to finally board, but it has only happened once. My commute to work is about 50 minutes in total and I have grown to love it. I take one train for 10 minutes, then switch lines to another for 20. Then I take a mini bus to Island Resort where I work. With 2 changes the time goes by quickly and gives me time to gather my thoughts. The transportation here is so easy and super cheap which I love. Look at me! Who would’ve thought I’d become a subject of public transportation! #growingup
Cooking: I’ve grown to like cooking and eating quality, fresh simple meals. I love googling recipes and trying to create my own masterpieces. Mom and I spent a lot of time this summer in France cooking up easy healthy meals of fresh produce. One of my all time faves has been the eggplant parmesan. Super easy! Cut eggplant, salt and let “sweat” for 15-30 mins. Then mix 1/2 cup olive oil, 1 teaspoon of balsalmic vinegar, 1 clove of chopped garlic, salt & pepper in a cup. Pour over eggplant pieces and let soak for 10 minutes. Then bake in oven/microwave oven for 10 mins on each side. Then in small dish, top each piece of eggplant with red sauce and cheese of your liking. Stack eggplant pieces. Bake until sauce is bubbly and cheese is melted. Top with pesto, enjoy!
City lights & my roommate & my flat: Ode to Em! My nutso roommate. Thanks for putting up with my madness – so far – and welcoming me into your flat. You’re a PAL and I look forward to so many adventures this year. Beertopia YAAS! I also love my flat. My room has a double bed with pear sheets and on-suite bathroom with good water pressure from my shower head. My room is big enough to do workout videos (love my yoga mat too) and the apartment shared space is massive with tall ceilings and comfy couches and a dining room table. However I highly dislike that occasionally we get guests who are not welcome (cockroaches).
TAP the Ale Project: TAP the Ale Project is a small tap house on my quiet street of Mong Kok (just outside of all the craziness) complete with 40+ beers on tap. It really does feel like home. However I HATE the prices of craft beer in HK. These were $10 USD each. This seems to be the norm, ranging from 10-15 for a good brew. 😡 Craft beer is a right really, everyone should just have it for cheap! But, I am grateful it’s here.
American Horror Story: My Roanoke Nightmare : OMG is anyone else so stoked about the new season of AHS?! The fact that it’s based off of real life events of the Roanoke colony (historical fiction FREAK over here) is seriously wonderful. It’s been a while since I’ve had a show that I look forward to seeing every week. Episode one instantly reminded me of the first season which in my opinion was the best, so I’m hoping season 6 will be even better. #OBSESSED
Sweet potato everything: OK if there’s one thing in life I know I’m obsessed with it would be sweet potatoes. I’m not sure how I went 23 years without eating them but now I literally eat one every day. They are delicious baked in the oven with either butter or coconut oil and a dash of cinnamon, or topped with avocado and a fried egg. Sweet potato toast has my heart and sweet potato pancakes are my EVERYTHING. Literally, so easy to make. Recipe: 1 small baked sweet potato, remove skin + 2 eggs – blend together. Add drop of vanilla or honey for sweetner. That’s it. Blend until smooth and bake in pan like pancake. I top mine with banana, berries and cinnamon. Heaven on earth.
What it all comes down to is pure happiness and satisfaction that I feel from living land life. I love my cruiseship days but living in a place, a big city that feels so new yet familiar all at once, is such a great feeling. Also, I live for Sundays. Sleeping in, breakfast in bed and slow mornings with coffee. I’m already used to this.