Monday, November 16, 2009

Leapin' 'cross cont'nents

Helllllooooooo from down unda!

Finally I am on the other side of the world-where toilets flush the other way and people ride kangaroos to work.

All very excting stuff-- but first there is more to tell about my Hong Kong Adventure, because I had such a wonderful time!

First off, though I am thrilled to be reunited with the Canon G10 super camera- the downside is that it is much more complicated to upload photos with this camera than the crap one-- so it will take me a little longer to post them. I got some great photos though.

In the mean time- here are two photos that are not my own:

In case you didn't get to check out Mo's website- this is one of the posters for M0's upcoming show-- and that it Mo. Believe it or not- red is not her natural hair color though.

And this is Mo and I from "The Peak" which is this really touristy, but wonderful little viewing platform that you can view all of Hong Kong from- and you get there via a very steep tram ride. Sadly I don't look so great here- but I thought I'd include it since I don't have my photos to post yet. Also- the T-shirt that I am wearing here is from Mo's one woman show- and that is actually a cartoon of her on the front. I bought it at the Troupe's T- Shirt Shop!
Anyways-- where did I leave off?
Well I woke up around 2:00 pm because I am doing a crappy job of coping with Jetlag, and I braved the Hong Kong streets and Train by myself to go meet Mo. Actually the public transportation is amazingly efficient and incredbly clear- however the sheer amounts of people that go through are ridiculous. I said that you could confuse Hongkong with parts of China town in NYC- which is sort of true, but let me add this- many parts of HongKong are more like a mix of Times Square and Chinatown- it is so bright that it is like daytime all night, and there are people EVERYWHERE. Definitely the highest density of people I have seen in one place consistently.
Anyways- also on the train I met someone from Ghana who was playing on the soccer team for Hong Kong. I swear since I left Ghana I have some sort of magnet for meeting people from Ghana- many people have randomly started talking to me-- one woman I met in London even invited me to her home for dinner, but I never got to go. Anyways, so the magnet is equally strong, even in China.
After that, Mo and I went to a Cantonese Opera that her friend Bonnie had reccomended ( her friend is studying Chinese Opera)- which was pretty cool- though obviously I didn't understand a lot of it. However there was a sort of martial arts element to it, which could translate for any viewer, and the whole experience was pretty cool. Mo and I talked about how Brecht modeled his theater after Chinese Opera in a lot of ways and it was interesting to observe such a presentational artform. Way better than watching clips of Chinese opera in Into to Theater Studies my freshman year.
The next day, work up similarly late- but it was fine because Mo and her company either seem to not sleep at all, or only sleep during the day ( The morning I left the group had an all night meeting- and the day I got there, Mo had literally not slept for two days-- i don't know how they do it)- so my hours were actually fine.

Mo and I went to her other personal studio space- where she edits documentaries and stuff ( she has done one about homelessness and one about prostitution)-- something I had no idea that she did. She had painted the walls herself and the space was so interesting. Mo is truly an artist- let me tell you- and I was so inspired by her all over again. She seems to do exactly what I always say I'd like to do, but haven't really done yet, which is use many mediums to convey an idea- and to really create a space in which to showcase her ideas. I respect her so much.
Anyways, we then went up to that peak, and then bargained for some jade in the local markets- and then went out to dinner with her troupe. That is the other thing- Mo and Banky and the rest of the troupe are just the kindest most generous and welcoming people. They all bent over backwards making plans for me to enjoy the city, and thinking of the best restaurants to take me to. In addition to housing me and acting as the best tour guides ever, they also tried over and over again to pay for my meals-- I had a really hard time giving them anything in return.
It really is wonderful to have someone to show you around though- it makes such a difference. I felt like I really tasted Hong Kong ( figuratively and literally) because I was able to go where local people go. It is definitely the best way to see a place- because you not only get to see your friend, but get to see a place through their eyes.
Anyways, I left the next morning after trying to sleep for a few hours ( to no avail). The trip to the airport was smooth sailing- pretty amazing actually. There are three train stations to the airport in the city, and you can actually check your luggage and yourself in there- and they will take your luggage to the airport, and you don't have to see it again until you get off the plane. Brilliant. Also, the airport is huge in Hong Kong, and expertly designed. Mo said she thinks that it is the biggest in the world- and I totally believe it. I stood looking around at one point, and I actually could not see the edge of the building no matter which direction I looked. So different from the last Hong Kong airport, which I still remember flying into over ten years ago-- it was in the middle of the city, and the city had grown up around it so you had to fly between skyscrapers to get there - I remember looking out the window at people in their apartments- and then there was a sudden right angle and you landed. Crazy crazy.
Anyways, I am only going to write a little bit about Australia now because I am running low on computer credit, and I need to save some so I can get up again at 4:45am my time to register for classes next semester---- yay...not..
But anyways- I spent today mostly walking around. It feels incredible to be in Melbourne again. I am staying in South Yarra which is the area that we lived in 12 years ago or whatever. I was writing an email to someone today about how strange it feels to be here again. The passage of time freaks me out in general sometimes, but it is so weird to be in a place with certain memeories attached to it. The first time I landed here- it was before many of the things that had shaped my life occured- first off it was before I lived here- before I had traveled at all. It was before my parents divorced. That is another. It was before my mother had another spouse who is a woman-- another pivitol experience of mine. And ofcourse, most crucially, it was before my Dad passed, and actually before his illness affected my life in a huge way- he was still pretty physically able and healthy then. I guess it is part of being an adult, to be alive long enough that you can remember a moment in your life when you were completley different- when almost nothing about you resembles the person you are now. It was before I gave a crap about theater. Before I sang. Before I even needed glasses or got braces. Haha. And it really hit me in a strange way- it was an experience that I had never had before- to be in a place where memories are so strong and you are so different.
And it is crazy the memories you do remember!
Anyways-- I am going to stop there for now, but there is much more to come you can be sure!

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