Wednesday, June 11, 2014

China 2014 part 10 - Macau


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1049. Last dawn.

After repacking -- stuff barely fits, I may need to throw out dead socks to get home -- I got out of the hotel in good order, got breakfast and a last souvenir, and then down to the (non-airconditioned) train station to wait like two hours and drink up a Bud tab.  Something every cooldown.

I left a lot of stuff undone in Guangzhou, mostly due to that wrong turn on Tuesday.  If that was done correctly, I'd've seen the museum and more of the park then, and maybe had the bandwidth to wait out the shipping thing yesterday and go to the game in person rather than watching it from the hotel through the bottom of a San Mig bottle.  However, a lot of it was the explosive rain, and you occasionally just have runs of bad luck, like yesterday afternoon, where there's nothing to do but cut your losses, go home, and wait out the influence of the evil star.  I saw a lot of Guangzhou -- the tower, some of the park, the Hanyue museum, a lot of Zhongshan 6th Road -- but I missed enough to want to come back sometime; sometime when it rains less, or when I have the weather shell that successfully warded off rain in my last stay in HK, which I did not bring this time for space/weight reasons.

Next, Macau, but how "next" it is depends on where the train is routed to.  As a 高铁, it should be going to Zhuhai North, as it was on the prebook form, but both the ticket and the callboard have plain old Zhuhai.  This only makes sense if the old station on the border has been taken out of service and the flag moved north, but China doesn't generally abandon rail stations.  Maybe this is like Qingdao was, where certain high-speed trains are still routed into the old station; maybe I'll have to take a bus.  Regardless, I still have to hike through Macau to the hotel, under a lot more pack than I intended doing it.

Careful reading of the can shows the Bud tab is not cheating; it's brewed under license in Wuhan.  Win.

To some extent, the rather large number of toddlers in Chinese rail transit is an artifact of traveling during the school year; families with school-age children are kind of rooted most of the time, so only people with sub-kindergarten kids are moving around.  Some of it is the law of large numbers.  Some of it, though, is the fact that 2012 was a dragon year, and as such you can expect there to be abnormally more kids between the ages of 16 and 27 months right now than at other times.

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1050. Jars in Guangzhou South.

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1051. Zhonglish; generally, the Chinese pile existing words together in weird ways rather than making them up, but this is an exception.

- Macau -

The train was to the normal/border station.  From there, I got to the hotel, and then in amid a bunch of caps.

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1052. Macau off the tourist track.

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1053. Rank of apartments.

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1054. Corner of a stairwell.

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1055. Across the reservoir into town.

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1056. More of the north side.

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1057. Lisboa and governor's hill.

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1058. Ship at anchor in the harbor.

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1059. Grand Prix setup.

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1060. Graceful arches of the harbor bridge.

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1061. Temple gate detail.

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1062. Casino or something under demolition.  The regeneration is continual.

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1063. Mural in an underpass.

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1064. Lisboa complex.

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1065. Island and tower, across the lake.

1066. (DNCO).

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1067. New casino, old apartments; far from the only view of this.

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1068. Mural on an older hotel.

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1069. Wrong guy, the first name's Phillipe.

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1070. Back stairs on the hill.

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1071. Faraway Villa, up close.

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1072. The jungle kind of took over this part of the path.

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1073. Along the hill.

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1074. Down to the casinos.

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1075. This parklet; apologies for the clutter, but I couldn't be arsed to move my provisions out of the way to take a picture.

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1076. Out to some north islands.

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1077. The Tree That Ate The Pavement.

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1078. Old colonial house.

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1079. Hill tower though a plaza sculpture.

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1080. Close traffic circle bronze.

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1081. The hotel, coming from inland.

I drank too much to go eat either chicken or Macanese, but I've been here before, and need caps more than cuisine.  There's a Fedex office about, but the heli's a bust; I've got breakfast, caps, and lunch tomorrow, and then it's off to the ferry.


Since I don't give up easily, I'm going to check the Fedex office this morning, mainly for a price check.  The helicopter may not be totally out of reach, even with pack up, and I want to make sure that I'm not inadvertently spending more to ship gear home than I would to keep it local.  Mostly, though, I have two supermarkets to check for a Macau Beer -- yesterday got caps from Denmark and goddamned Tasmania, but no locals -- and a little bit of breakfast before the ferry.

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1082. Golden flower, morning rain.

1083. (DNCO).

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1084. More mist, less taxi.

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1085. Art sphere in a driving rain.

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1086. Up to the Guia lighthouse.

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1087. Arch, traffic, lashing rain.

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1088. Carp pond in front of a government building.

v67. Rain on the trees.

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1089. Casino and street.

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1090. The Grand Lisboa, looking especially phallic from this angle.

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1091. Seriously, if this building wasn't intended to look like a cockanballs, the architect is the best troll ever.

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1092. Street in front of the Grand Lisboa.

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1093. Wynn and MGM Grand beyond.

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1094. Traffic circle park.

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1095. An invitation sparsely taken.

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1096. Wynn, MGM, and lagoon.

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1097. Bridge north to China.

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1098. Proof the lagoon's not dead; leftovers of some bird's dinner.

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1099. Lisboa, old and new.

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1100. Green end to a side street.

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1101. Greenery across the Av. Dr. Rodrigo Rodrigues.

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1102. Banyan does a stepover.

It's my regret to report that Macau Beer is likely extinct in the wild.  I hunted Macau extensively, though not exhaustively, and despite securing 11 caps, more per ground hour than any other city on this trip, even Harbin, I was not able to raise a single can or bottle of this beer.  As late as 2010, it was orderable in restaurants, but it appears at present that Zhujiang, Blue Girl, Carlsberg, and Haizhu have entirely driven it from the market.  Macau is a city worth coming back to, but repeated visits to hunt this cap will probably be in vain.

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1103. See, I wasn't lying 4 years ago.

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1104. Ships and standoffs at anchor.

I made the 12:15 ferry by inches, and will trade in my patacas after I get across to HK.  I'm almost done, but I still have to have the energy to tour hard across the estuary.  They're not running tomorrow, not till fucking Sha Tin on Sunday, so my HK time will involve less leisure and more hard push to the max.

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1105. The Sands and some of the waterfront.

1106. (DNCO).

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1107. Not going to collide.  A cat ferry hit a cargo hauler around midnight of the 20th/21st; this was a strong factor in not sticking around Macau late, and making sure I was able to get a ferry out in daylight.

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