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San Francisco, USA

 

Hong Kong History Museum

The Hong Kong Museum of History is running a special exhibition of the banking development in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Both modern day financial centers get their start from mid 19th century. It was an interesting exhibition of the development of the industry, from small native banks to modern day institutions, from hand written bookkeeping to electronic systems.

There are a lot of artifacts on display, including old bank notes, commericals, as well as many old pictures. Of particular interest to me are some authentic reconstruction of bank counters. I stepped into a small reconstructed China bank. It has such a rough and provincial ambiance I feel like going back to a bygone era.

Then I discovered another gem on display, a Chinese newspaper dated July 24, 1942. The headline was used to tell the story of the Japanese military currency introduced during the 4 year of occupation. But what were the other front page news on that day? German troops were advancing to Stalingrad, major battle with the Russians was anticipated. Such a tense news during the war time! The rest of course, is already history.

2008.05.15 comments

 

Visiting Home

This week I am visiting my parents in Hong Kong. I have grown up in Hong Kong and lived there for most of my life. But since 13 years ago I have moved aboard. During the time I make regular visit but otherwise have not spend too much time here. I have left long enough that I feel out of touch with my birth place in many ways.

There are seas of change during the past decade. Large scale development and infrastructure work following the opening of the new airport have changed the physical face Hong Kong. New batch of youngsters are refining what's chic and fashionable. On the other hand a lot have remained the same. My home in Mong Kok is still the busiest commercial district. Flashy new building and shopping center sprouts all around, standing side by side with dusty old building, the kind of old building that I know so well when I grown up. People seem to busy working everyday, just like way it was as always.

I have undergone many personal change as well. My son has turned two and I'm learning everything about parenting. Seeing my aging parents also evoke a lot of my own childhood. So many things we have done in the past that will only remain in memory because time has changed.

I find myself become very reflective these days. It is an odd for me to find this adjective to describe my state of consciousness. Indeed I am reflective enough to be aware of myself being reflective.

2008.05.14 [] - comments

 

Daddy Goes to Work

There is so much fun watching a child learn. My 2 year old son is very used to the morning ritual of me leaving house. He has since learned to use the phrase "Daddy goes to work" to describe this ritual.

What is really interesting is when I read a story book to him, we saw the picture below. And he said spontaneously that, "(Maisy) goes to work"!

Maisy goes to work

This sounds like an innocent association. But I am impressed by how much he must understand in order to make this association. First of all he can interpret that this two dimensional drawing really represents some three dimensional objects he sees in real life. Next he understands the group of geometric shape in the background represents a house. The trapezoid is the roof, the rectangles with grid are the windows, and the black rectangle is the door. Then there is this mouse figure named Maisy, who stand on two feet and wear cloths, is analogous to a human. Finally when an actor appears in front of the house's front door, it portraits the action "leaving house", or "goes to work" in his wording. This is just how smart a two year old can be!

2008.05.03 comments

 

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