So, if you don’t know, I work for a pretty small company in the hills of Appalachia. We don’t often (read: ever) have an excuse for international travel. However that is all changing as we have a new client that happens to be an international bank with offices in Hong Kong.

The scope of our work requires that I go there for a little over a month to do some UI sprints working hand in hand with the end users. So I’ll be in Hong Kong on Saturday (returning sometime in September). If you read this blog and are familiar with Hong Kong and you have any suggestions for restaurants or cool things that I just should NOT miss while I’m there then please leave a comment.

This should be an interesting project as I will be finishing out what is currently a partial UI in C# using a C++ backend and then integrating it with a new Java backend once I get back!

I think this project pretty much exemplifies my life as a software developer. I bounce around between many technologies all of the time. One day I might be doing Java work or C#, or VB.Net, or ColdFusion, or PHP or even Ruby. Then the next I might be switching again to something totally different. I’ve even worked on Ada projects here. There is never a shortage of things for me to learn and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I realize I don’t blog with great frequency on this site so I doubt you will notice but I will probably blog a little less frequently while there. But for now I offer you all a virtual toast “ganbei!”



thanks for the great comment John. I am pretty excited about going. I don’t have much time to get acclimated to the culture (I have to be at work next monday) but I’ll do my best to not push myself physically until I have been there a few days and gotten used to the air.

Thanks too for the “OctoPass” tip - I will be sure to do that.

John Dowdell

Awesome! Hope you have fun… it’s a very rich area.

Right now the weather is a little difficult… heat waves, rain, and air quality. Please give yourself lots of acclimatization time.

Random notes:

o Get an OctoPass so you can use transit without hassle.

o If you have the opportunity for weekend dim sum with friends, go for it!!

o Wikipedia has a great overview of food:
(Eating at street stalls has been safe for me, but you might want to pack your own chopsticks.)

o Bottled water and drinks are readily available, but you might want to be careful with ice cubes, raw washed fruit, other foods where local microorganisms cannot be boiled away. (Try the streetside tea stands, invigorating!)

o Great walking town… the escalators in Hong Kong, avoiding the touts in Kowloon, the view from The Peak, then walking back down through nature to the bustle.

o Lots of day trips to tranquil, lush islands possible… bike rides are quite achievable.

o Hong Kong was a British enclave, while Macau has strong Portuguese influence… mind-blowing.

o Amy Leung’s “No Sweat Cantonese” is a compact, approachable CD/book of simple day-to-day hrases… available in bookstores there.

o Mongkok night markets… Sunday afternoons in Wanchai bars… sailing by the Aberdeen boat village… getting lost in Chung King Mansions… watching the evening light show from the Star Ferry… lots of varied things to do.

Please cut yourself some slack and take things easy, though… it’s a rich environment, but a challenging one, particularly if you’re coming from a quiet area with good air quality. But if you can pace yourself well, you’re in for a fascinating and rewarding month. Have fun! :)