Wednesday was the Duanwu Festival, a national holiday here in China and a few other Asian countries. We had the day off of class to observe the holiday and attend some dragon boat races together. At 9:30am, our group grew to over 40 people when we met with the Hong Kong Texas Exes and other study abroad students from UT. We made our way to the Shing Mun River in the Sha Tin area where we watched races for about an hour. Besides eating zongzi and drinking realgar wine, the dragon boat races are the main focus of the Duanwu festival. Thousands of people attend the races throughout the city to watch or participate in the events.
We enjoyed the races, but we were ready to leave when it was time for lunch. We walked about a mile to a Dim Sum restaurant where The Hong Kong Texas Exes made a reservation for us. One of the Texas Exes, who is originally from Hong Kong, explained that the focus of Dim Sum is actually the tea they serve with the meal, not the food itself. Despite this fact, my focus was certainly on the “different” meats being served and trying to find something familiar. I tried BBQ chicken feet and roasted pigeon for the first time… and probably the last. The dishes were surprisingly tolerable and even somewhat tasty, but I’d never order them for myself. For those that are curious like I was, pigeon tastes like chicken. A very, very dark piece of chicken.
On the way back to the hotel, we stumbled upon several Hong Kong police officers. A few of us took advantage of the photo op: