August 14, 2010

Dragon- and butter-flies

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Froggie was going to the Hong Kong Wetland Park today, and I decided to tag along so I could have a chance to use my camera for something other than food pics.  It's been more than 6 months since I took out my big cannon, and it's due to see the light of day again.

We arrived at the park shortly after opening, and the sun was already beating down on us.  Within 5 minutes I had sweat pouring down my back.  The big dog was out and mounted  on the monopod, with camera attached.  Froggie really likes her dragonflies, so I start getting in close.  Fortunately they are relatively stationary and often perch on top of weeds.

Here's a golden ringed dragonfly.

A busy bee rummaging inside a waterlily.

A rare short-tailed red dragonfly, which a park volunteer pointed to me.

I knew this wasn't the right time of the day nor season for birds, and sure enough, we only saw 1 kinky-necked egret close enough to one of the hides...

We crossed into the Butterfly Park, and there were a number of them fluttering around.  For someone who's new at shooting insects, butterflies are tough.  They keep fluttering and rarely land on something stationary.  The majority of them were common tiger butterflies.  The lemon emigrant has an interesting name, and also looks a little more interesting.

By now we have been beaten by the sun, and the hunger pangs could no longer be kept at bay.  We head into Yuen Long, and found ourselves at the new location of Man Kee Brisket (文記清湯腩.咖喱腩麵家).  They had moved recently due to rising rents, and we were happy to have found them.

I asked for the butterfly brisket (爽腩), and the owner doubled-checked to make sure that Froggie and I knew what we were asking for.  I love that chewy texture... and of course the fat and collagen can't hurt, either!

Froggie wanted some honeycomb tripe (金錢肚), which disappeared pretty quickly.  The beef tendons (牛筋) were also very yummy, and it was just a collagen fest... And the radish has tons of flavor as they've no doubt been braised for hours.  The bowls of e-fu noodles (伊麵) were pretty nice in the clear broth.  I think we had two happy campers right there in that little restaurant.

I had errands to run before going back to town.  I picked up some wife cakes (老婆餅) from Dai Ton Cake Shop (大同老餅家), then proceeded to Victoria Oriental Superstore to buy some ice cream.  I became less enamored with Arce Dairy's ice cream after my last visit, but my friends clearly were still excited about them.  I took away almost 6 liters of ice cream...and none of it for myself.  I did pick up a durian popsicle by a Malaysian brand, which tasted pretty good - a hell lot better than Arce's durian ice cream, anyway.

I lugged my gear and my haul back to the island, and managed to transfer the goods to my friend who was waiting with open arms.  It was a pretty good day...

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