Tuesday 31 July 2012

Weird... but funny people in Hong Kong!

I have visited the Animation, Comics & Games Expo 2012 in Hong Kong. It was a very crowded tradeshow, full of eccentric people (also know as "CosPlayers") as you can see below...

I met this "Japanese/Chinese style" girl in couple with a "Chinese/French Soldier" promoting a World War 2 comic book.

I asked these 3 girls to take a photo with me (yes... all three are girls!) but they preferred posing like that! They were all very funny!

On this one, I posed with 3 girls wearing cat masks. Not as crazy as the next picture I took.

Imp ears, costume, hat... This girl was fully equipped and was certainly the craziest girl in this tradeshow!


You can check these few pictures below to catch a glimpse of the different "CosPlayers" I met there (my favourite is the red/race flag one, I don't know why..).

Overall, it was a very cool event and if you really want to have fun, it is a very good place to spend an afternoon (entrance fee is 30 HKD only). If you want to have a better view of the different stands, you can also watch this Video Blog (ACGHK 2012 Overview).

Friday 27 July 2012

Exploring Yangshuo, Guilin

Last weekend all the Zhuhai interns had a perfect chance to discover Yangshuo, a county in Guilin, a place of unique scenery, cultural heritage and, as it turned out, great night life.

After quite an entertaining 8 hour's bus ride (thanks to our Chinese travel companions who were singing, dancing and joking about the crocodiles in the river we were going to swim in) we finally reached our destination. It was about 6:30 in the morning, but Yangshuo was already hustling and bustling, with people selling and buying all possible kinds of things. 

After having a nice breakfast, we were ready to explore local surroundings. Fighting the temptation to take a picture on every corner, we walked down to the Li River, and, following the directions of our super-energetic group leader, we embarked on a bamboo raft. 

Going down the river, we could see lots of beautifully-shaped mountains, including the famous 20-yuan mountains:

and the girls blessed their washing machines when they spotted a traditional way of washing clothes:

Then we took a bus to visit the Yinzi Cave with its impressive stalactite and stalagmite formations.

When all the hungry, waiting at the exit of the cave, finally met all the curious, who took their time to wander around, it was just the right time to try the local food near the moon mountain.

After such a nice refuelling, our guys were ready for a little bit more than watching the butterflies in the Butterfly cave and they decided to speed up the exploration by hopping on scooters. 

While the rest of us continued to enjoy the nature's beauty among stalactites in various butterfly forms.

With loads of photos and impressions, we set off to our hotel. After spending a whole day broadening our horizons, what we deserved was a famous Beerfish dinner, which we were happy to taste.

Finally, the last thing we had to explore was the Xi Jie (Bar Street). And the exploration was successful!

However, the next morning, after such a challenging exploration, few of us had enough courage to ride bicycles in the blazing sun. Actually the only ones who took the bicycles were our Chinese friends, while we had a nice bus ride which took us to the Yulong River, where we again embarked on bamboo rafts. But this time it wasn't a relaxing trip: armed with water guns, we mercilessly attacked each other. Don't worry: no soldiers were hurt!

Tired and wet, but still happy, we went for a lunch and popped in a shop to get ready before a ride back home.

All in all, a great trip with a great bunch of people!

Wednesday 25 July 2012

Nice to meet you VICENTE: Typhoon level 10 in Hong Kong

Vicente from the sky
What a beautiful view of Vicente from the plane. However, the happenings under that wonderful storm eye were unpleasant. Back in 2008, I have also experienced a typhoon during my first internship in Hong Kong, but the recent one was crazy!

Vicente hits Hong Kong between the 23rd to 24th July, on 1am, at its full force (level 10). Since 1946, only 13 typhoons reached this level and the last one was in 1999. That's why the streets were totally empty Hong Kong yesterday. Everyone is advised to stay indoors.

Picture taken in Central, usually one of the busiest place in Hong Kong 
Perhaps the worst damage we have seen is the scaffolding which collapsed on a residential building. Now you should understand the danger of staying outside during a tropical storm. I could never imagine the consequences if one of this bamboo crash on someone…

Collapsed scaffolding

After the tons of damages caused by Vicente, it is finally safe on 24th July morning as the Hong Kong observatory lifted the warning… Indeed a shocking experience but I am glad all is well now.

Hong Kong Bay after the Storm 

Monday 16 July 2012

Summer Barcamp Hong Kong @Cocoon

There was no time to chill despite the weekend! This Saturday, 14th of July, was a special and interesting day. Thibaut and I attended the Summer Barcamp in Cocoon.

What is Barcamp? BarCamp was born in Palo Alto, California in 2005. In just three years, it became an international network of user-generated conferences–open, participatory workshop-events, whose content is provided by the attendees–often focusing on early-stage web applications and related open source technologies, social protocols, and open data formats.

According to Barcamp's website, "It is the Biggest Unconference in Hong Kong"

Our "mission" is none other than to search for some web designers, as well as promoting ODM!

Indeed, Barcamp is a unique conference from 11am to 6pm. The conference was held using various topics animated by volunteers, each lasted approximately 30 minutes. I personally like the topic “When it becomes hard to manage” and paid full attention to it. 

Conference at Barcamp Hong Kong

Next to the conferences, people were discussing about various topics whereas Thibaut and I were eagerly looking for designers. We tried all possible ways to succeed.

Our advertisement is located at the upper right corner

At the end of the day, all participants are supposed to have a drink together. However, Thibaut and I did not stay for it. Instead, we cabbed down to LKF to celebrate our National Day with other French buddies :)

Thibaut and I in the Taxi: Let’s go to celebrate the French National Day 

Friday 13 July 2012

Place your bets! - HK Racecourse

This Wednesday was one of the busiest nights of the racing season at Happy Valley Racecourse. The size of the crowd swelled as the night progressed and there was a very thrilling vibe about the place. Since it was the last race of the season, this was the reason for such a large amount of spectators.

Crowd growing in numbers as night went on
Scene from the racecourse.

For some of the ODM team that went along, it was our first experience of this sporting event. Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed the idea of coming along with a group of friends and just genuinely having a good night out. It sort of reminded me of meeting up at a bar/pub except with a live sporting event…and spectacular scenery.

Cantopop singer G.E.M.

Also invited along to the event was special guest Cantopop singer, G.E.M. who treated us with a few of her popular songs. There was a horde of paparazzi and fans gathered around the stage. Although it’s only been a week and half since my stay in Hong Kong I am quickly adapting to the culture and strangely felt exited and involved with the celebrity buzz.

Thibaut's winning bet.
One of the funniest aspects of betting is when everyone starts shouting at their horse as it runs by. Some of us did not place a winning bet, so unfortunately you win some, you lose some. Thibaut (from the ODM team) on the other hand scored a bull’s eye when his horse came first. So congratulations to him!

I would happily recommend any intern to experience this event and can guarantee that you'll have an awesome time.

Check out some related blogs:

Tuesday 3 July 2012

Sunday, alert day in Hong Kong

Hong Kong residents who tried to go out this weekend probably noticed that some things were different.

The most obvious was that people were protesting in the streets. Actually, every year around the same date (HKSAR Establishment Day) people go down on the streets and show their dissatisfaction.

Of course, traffic has been disturbed during the whole day and walking through the avenue was quite impossible...

It's quite obvious from the picture that this kind of situation is definitely not usual in Hong Kong : policemen all around the streets, people with banners, traffic jams... 

For those who couldn't stand the noise and crowd, hopefully it was a great sunny day and Shek O Beach is always a good place to spend some time. 

But this sunday was a bit different as well, because of... a shark alert!

So as you can see.. this Sunday was overall quite a busy day in Hong Kong...

HKSAR 15th Anniversary Establishment Day

This year marks the 15th Anniversary of Establishment Day in Hong Kong - transfer of sovereignty from the United Kingdom to the People's Republic of China. During the evening of 1 July, I caught a fireworks display near Wan Chai Ferry Pier. The bridge was crowded with locals and foreigners likewise, all waiting to catch a glimpse of the 23 minutes fireworks display...

The multi-coloured fireworks show started at 8pm and was held at the Victoria Harbor. For a good watching spot, be sure to sit in early for next year's HKSAR Establishment Day! 

My Remote Internship Experience: At the Midpoint

An internship with a company is an important and valuable learning experience for any tertiary student out there. I had been looking forward...