Saturday, February 17, 2018


One thought that came unbidden yesterday was "why are all these little Chinese girls wearing pretty new clothes, while I'm still trudging around in these sorry old rags?" The answer, of course, is that I am not a little Chinese girl, and prefer to gradually break in new clothes, so that they fit me like an old shoe eventually. This coat is a good example: yes, it's starting to look disreputable, but I've got a tube with tamper and pipe cleaners in one breast pocket, my lottery tickets in the other, some paper napkins for wiping my spectacles plus matches and an extra tamper in the pocket underneath it, and on the other side under the cleaners there are pipes and tobacco.
I can guarantee you not a single one of the tykes have that.
Except for the coat, though, it was all clean.

Okay, the coat was, erm, grotty.
Perhaps old and smelly.
But stylish!

It is customary to wear new clothes on the first day of New Year, which was Friday, February sixteenth. And children especially, because of course they look neat, and outgrow everything. More than us crusty old farts they need new garb regularly. Plus, cute. Major motive.
One marked individualist had a nice BLUE coat, instead of the red all of her peers wore. Sweetheart, you are outstanding!
Kudos on pushing the envelope.

After dropping by my bank I went in search of a place to have lunch. Many of my favourite haunts were closed for the first day of New Year but I did find a place for garlic noodles and grilled pork (燒豬肉蒜麵).
Afterwards a pipe while wandering around. Happy kiddies, the sounds of firecrackers, a lion dance at the intersection of Grant and Pacific, drums, scraps of red on the sidewalk, and enormously loud firecrackers outside Red's Place on Jackson Street.

No one except the tourists looking askance at my smoke.
They do that because they lead such clean lives.
Our healthy "big boned" visitors.

The perfect end to the first day: a cup of very strong black tea with milk and sugar, and a glass of Scotch, after the last pipefull, a Virginia and Perique flake smoked outside among the bums and drunken millennials, because my apartment mate said something about the smell of tobacco .....

[If you smell marijuana on Polk Street, that ain't me. I'm old school, and my second hand smoke will traumatize you, unlike the recreational stuff, which is grown by little green men deep in the Amazon, who recycle and hug dolphins on a daily basis.]

Man, I can still taste that siu yiuk with garlicky noodles!
Laai min (瀨麵), often served with 肉碎。
It was absolutely delicious!

I'm having more noodles today.
Home-cooked this time.

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