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The kids were allowed to save 10 treats from Halloween to eat one a day. Kai remembered as soon as he got up from his nap, and chose a small bag of potato skins chips to eat. he made sure kalena had a snack to eat, too as they say together enjoying their treats at the table. then they had their little conversation together:

“kalena, sit at the table to eat please”.

“okay, Kai”.

“do you like it”?


“hmm…(referring to his chips) why do they make this SO good?! is this made of potatoes, mom?”

“yes kai, can you believe it? And you say you don’t like potatoes”. (me)

kai: “raise your hand if you like potatoes”.

we all raise our hand up.


i have to admit that after the age of 5, i started hating cats. it all started after the cat that i loved so much next door scratched my neck and face up pretty bad. i know – hate is a strong word. but seriously, i started to not like them so much, and then that feeling grew stronger (sorry j and all you cat lovers out there). i’m not sure if it’s the endless shedding hair, their whining, how they are rarely friendly, or the idea of hairballs being barfed out every now and then. they must know that i hate them, because they have chosen to continually follow me wherever i go in the world. seriously.

i seem to get woken up in the middle of the night by cats in heat, wherever i go. they whine as loud as they can until i finally get mad enough to yell or something. this has happened to me a lot, no matter where in the world i am. i am not joking – hong kong, morocco, philippines, korea, and now right on my front lanai (porch)? just leave me alone already!

am i the only one that this happens to so often?

Update: the cats got so bad that after trial and error, I have found a way to get rid of them: get a cage from the humane society. They set the trap off once; they never visit that house again.

Of course there are always exceptions (like tourists), but for the most part:

1. People here never honk.
2. People will actually stop for you to make a lane change if you are stuck behind a parked car or a bus.
3. They know how to merge.
4. People often let you go ahead of them, even if they have the right of way (and watch out for you).

My son reminded me of these simple pleasures as I was pulling out from the grocery store, trying to make a left turn onto a busy 4 lane road. A guy who was also turning left into the store from the busy road stopped and waved to let me go first. Kai saw this and excitedly said, “Mama, he waved “hi”!”. I explained why he waved, and drove home happy to feel the aloha spirit once again in this beautiful place.

We are enjoying life so much that the blog has been neglected. We don’t really have any excuse. Sorry!


okay, i’m way overdue for posting.  i promise some will be forthcoming very shortly.  in the meantime, my brother pointed me to some holiday humor surrounding the recent shoe attack on president bush in iraq.  if you don’t know what this refers to, google it.



hong kong has some similarities to la when it comes to flashiness, particularly with cars.  there is the oft-quoted statistic of highest number of rolls-royces per capita, and with that comes a multitude of ferraris, maseratis, lamborghinis, bentleys, and even the lowly porsche/bmw/mercedes.  for even more eye candy, head to the oil-rich countries in the middle east and see some real show wheels.  the currency market is currently in extreme turmoil with gains and losses hitting records on a daily basis.  so get yours while the getting’s good.


chromed benz in dubai (emirates mall)

unless you are a media hermit, you are probably aware of the scope of the wall street meltdown over the last few weeks.  it is a pretty surreal experience to watch from inside as massive institutions maneuver to stay in business.  i hope everything shakes out sooner than later.  in the meantime, here’s to memories of our last trip to new york….

just a few months ago

just a few months ago

the last few days have been super busy.  i have a load of pics to publish and some other tidbits floating around my head to share – all coming soon.

for now i’ll leave you with kevin rose’s prediction for the new itunes visualization to be announced at apple’s event tomorrow.  regardless of whether this is incorporated, someone should figure out how to make this run to my music.

update: upgraded to itunes 8.  the visualizer is awesome.

we recently noticed that the tap water coming through our brita filter has slightly yellow tinge.  this was confirmed when we drew kai’s bath and saw a more focused color.  ew.  after checking around, it seems this is considered safe (hmmm…) and results from the age of the pipes.  i’m not too worried, but we have transitioned to bottled water for most of our drinking needs.

in my travels i have seen many different levels of water cleanliness.  in italy we stayed near a lake that was considered to be the cleanest in europe.  one local resident told me that it is so clean, you can swim out 10 meters or so and drink it.  wow.  i remember being in egypt and watching a dead mule floating in a river lined with trash that two kids were bathing in.  i drank water that smelled like fish from a well in the philippines.  a common warning to me here is that i will be prone to balding because my head goes uncovered in the hong kong rain (made acidic by air pollution).

according to the economist, bottled water has developed into a 60 billion dollar industry.  why are people willing to pay for something that comes free from the tap or the ground?  i think most of this results from a perceived level of cleanliness and (more importantly) uncleanliness.  but the fact that we may be deciding between mineral or distilled while much of the world has no options is distrubing.

i came across a fantastic book, put out by blue planet run foundation.  it contains unbelievably moving images and some great education on water around the globe.  it is a fantastic coffee table book available from the website at $45, but we do not drink coffee or have a coffee table.  i do have a macbook though and fortunately it is available as a high resolution pdf e-book.  even better, amazon is offering it as a free download here.

images sourced from the book.
keeping the dirty water where it belongs

keeping the dirty water where it belongs


"Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it."

~ Steve Jobs

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