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Rea View Searching for warmth and calm

Macau - Cobblestone, Casinos and well....Casinos!

MACAU | Wednesday, 27 February 2008 | Views [438]

After four months in Asia and on our final leg of the journey before home, we finally run into someone we know in Macau!  And he's from China.  Our friend from Window on Yuanyang.  He's working with the Hill Tribes, preparing them for the inevitable arrival of tourism.  It's very hard, as he knows it will change them forever, but there is little to stop it now.  For us, we are filled with complex questions as to the good and bad effects of tourism.  We're a part of it and we must be conscious of our actions and how they may change the lives of others.  Long live the Hill Tribes of northern Vietnam and Laos.  What we've seen happen in Thailand is frightening, and we can only hope that the Vietnamese and Laotians can sidestep the desire to become westernized.  There are no bicyclists in Thailand.  They're all driving to KFC and putting on 30% body weight in the last five years!  Come back Thailand...come back to your roots.

Well, anyways, this is supposed to be about Macau.  But, there's not much to say.  We spent two days in the Victoria Hotel, a lovely piece of architecture just blocks from the Chinese border.  The old colonial section of town is wonderfully restored and holds some beautiful churches as well as ruins and the streets of Senado Square are just dazzling on the eyes!  The method of laying the stones on the road create an illusion of undulating waves. 

One fast ferry ride left to go to Hong Kong, but first, a quick shopping trip to China.  We need only walk ten minutes and we're across the border but it's not the China we were hoping to shop in, rather just a mass of urban complexes.  However, I manage to acquire a $60 Chinese violin, which seems to make the afternoon visit worthwhile.

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