In my opinion, books are the best accessory.
Here’s the Hong Kong update for yet another week! Really enjoyed a busy, fulfilling work week with a meeting with a different grade level team every day. We looked at the first few inquiry units of the year and sorted out which units I’ll support through the year. It was good to identify two units per grade level over the year so that I can approach accommodating teams in a balanced manner. I am now on to sorting out schedules for the library in the fall. In addition to this, we switched hats in the library and are collecting all loaned books. It always feels odd when the message is: return books! Versus borrow, borrow, borrow! Shall anticipate the change back in the fall.
It was a quick, busy week full of many evening commitments and special activities. It also marked my learning experience with book ordering. Silly me. Order books at the end of April/early May… you won’t get your books in time to complete your budgeting… Had to run around and shop for books with a few hours turnaround time an evening this past week. I like the books I selected but they weren’t really the titles I committed to for the end of the year.
I was grateful to go with my fantastic (former- sob) assistant to Shenzhen again. We went back to pick up some clothes from the tailor along with many other “to shop for” items on the list. My happiest moment: finding a shop that sold anti-glare sheets for my mini-iPad. I had those sheets on my former iPads but had a really difficult time finding them for my new one, after 6 months of dealing with glare and fingerprints, I’m thrilled to read a quality clear screen without a light bouncing off the surface. I also had fun meeting other shopkeepers, chatting, and shopping… There are a few things I dislike about Shenzhen to be honest though:
1. I’ve been to a mall. Nowhere else yet in China.
2. It is a mall filled with people.
3. It is filled with people who are desperate to make sales.
4. I have to negotiate to get a decent price, the advice was to cut the initial cost in half. I am a person who bought a Saturn (car) twice because there was no negotiation with the process. It isn’t my forte, but I had many helpful, kind coaches.
5. There are many people who light up a cigarette throughout the malls, in the shops, outside of the shops. YUCK. I’ve heard the history and understand that there’s been loads of progress with Shenzhen, I bet sometime soon enough there won’t be as much smoking, but for now, YUCK.
6. I feel a breach of ethics shopping there. I won’t go into specific detail about it.
7. I get exhausted in shopping malls. Even when I have specific places to visit, dealing with selection and choices is honestly draining.
8. There are loads of children running around the shops and I wondered about their lifestyle growing up in Shenzhen…
Things I loved: I LOVED walking around a few shops that had ballroom dancing dresses and shoes. I marveled at the ruffles, colors, styles, and was heartbroken when I was told I wasn’t allowed to take pictures… but I just loved them. The lovely women I was with on the first trip at one point said, “oh, she’s in another one of those shops…” chuckle.
I loved chatting with a few local vendors who didn’t call me “missy, missy” the whole time and push items at me…
Having quality choice in fabric and someone who knows what they are doing with tailoring clothes is a godsend. Really appreciated making connections with talented people.
I loved browsing through jewelry creations. Didn’t know how much until I went to numerous shops with jaw dropping detailed pieces.
Memories came flooding back when we walked around the fabric areas and jewelry areas reminding me of my grandmother who passed away when I was 13. I remembered how she walked me through clothing stores to teach me what quality fabric was and how to select the best pieces… and also how she used to create jewelry. I was grateful to remember her so clearly. Sort of like a smell memory trigger for some, I had a visual memory trigger. Plus I had a lovely shopping partner who tolerated me talking out the memory on the spot.
So there are good and not-so-good parts of shopping in Shenzhen but overall, I am quite grateful for the opportunity to experience them!
When I wasn’t overwhelmed with work, I’ve been getting lost in many books. There were some brilliant ones I’ve enjoyed over the past few weeks… I’ll share on Monday as always but hope to create a few more book lists of favorites soon. I was really honored to interview Rosanne Parry this past week, quite a fantastic author! Styling Librarian: Author Interview: Rosanne Parry and review for Written in Stone
Anticipation is building for Monsters University movie in Hong Kong, we visited an entertaining interactive display of characters at Times Square. Also, we went across from Times Square to the Groupon store… Interesting that you can go into a store to pick up items you’ve bought online versus them being mailed out. We had a mini dehumidifier and computer stand waiting for us. Quite the fun situation.
Visit other Hong Kong updates here: http://thestylinglibrarian.com/hong-kong-life-updates/
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