Still can't believe I was there
I left for Macau on January 3rd, 2008 early in the morning to make for a good day of touring. We all headed onto a shuttle bus, from Guangzhou, China, that brought us through highway tolls etc. finally reaching the Macau border. We all got off excitedly, especially me, since I had never been there before; I filled out the required papers as to where we had come from and put it with my passport/visa walking with awe to the appropriate line-up for foreign citiezens ... it registered then, me a foreigner, it seems strange to say that ... the line-up for foreigners (me along with others) was very long. My friend and her parents looked on as I slowly made my way through customs with another friend who is also Canadian. My friends from China got through quickly, though we (friend's hubby and I) ' the foreigners' .
.. well our line up went quite slower. So much to fill-out (have a pen ready), so many line ups, so many people touring on this day, perhaps everyone noticed the great weather (hehe). I did find it hot there then again I'm from Canada where the temperature eg. on Wed. Feb.1st, 2008 was
Temp -8, Dewpoint is, -11, feels like -16, & winds blowing North @ 22 Km/h
So for me the weather in Macau hovering around 11 degrees or even higher on the 3rd of January was a 'warm' welcome ... pardon the pun. We stayed till about 9'ish, took pictures of the sun setting with beautiful rails in the way of that perfect photo, passed by MGM Grand, the Wynn, and later went into 'The Ventian' ... you got `tah` check out the Venetian!!!
Well be prepared if you go .
.. one surprise for me was: Where are the normal cubicals. You literally place each foot on either side of a hole, there is no water but EVERYTHING is collected is a pretty good manner LOL ... be prepared to squat (known as the 'squatter') ... be sure to bring/buy miniature packages of kleenex ... most places don't provide that either or if they do they're out of paper sometimes ... you take what you need from the 'sink area' (toilet paper if available) that both men and women use together; then go to your spot, do your thing, and return to clean in the same room with the women ... this also for me was different ... combing hair or washing hands with the men.
A view of St. Paul's Cathedral from the back ... sun is going down fast ... the day went by so quickly
I found out that people have taken the toilet paper rolls home etc. and that is why today they rarely provide toilet paper rolls in each cubical .
.. and some washrooms don't even have handsoap or the sinks aren't working properly ... this was a big part of my 'culture shock' that I first experieced in Macau ... my friend from China claims it's cleaner in their washrooms since they don't use toilets ... hmmm
Macao Grand Lisboa ... on the right of photo
YEAH it was Macau where this (the pitt ... LOL) was first introduced to me; from then on I pretty-much expected and was prepared for these types of washrooms and if toilets were provided ... GREAT ... Hope that wasn't information overload for you ... or to visual hehehe ... but you might at well know; wish someone had told me, then I would of come a bit more prepared ... bring some liquid sanatary hand-soap.
Macau is a place where diversity of culture was definitely present.
The history of Macau was very interesting and I found out it was colonized by the Portuguese in the 16th century & they became the 1st European settlement in the Far East. The story about St Paul's Cathedral burning down was interesting (I must read more on this story). Macau is still an independent country and I found the surrounding somewhat (if not) very 'western' with gambling and some bulidings/hotels similar to Las Vegas. I was surprised to see my friends' mother gamble, she won! Looked like Las Vegas, in a way :) Do go!!!!
St. Paul's Cathedral by George Chinnery (1774—1852). The cathedral was built in 1602 and more then one fire before it finally was destroyed by fire in 1835. Today only the southern stone façade remains. Macau, China_January 3rd, 2008
From Travbuddy Friend, Roselle