Life in the Gold Coast


I have been asked for more pictures of life in the Gold Coast, so here we are, starting with Archie’s new bedroom (you can see the side of the school out of the window) that side of the school is the pre-school classrooms and play areas (will be able to keep my eye on him!)

Our beach (down the hill and across the road) a few mums and kids spent the morning there today, it’s great if you ignore the shark nets!

The lovely Gold Coast Marina



Let loose in Temple St. Night Market


After an exhausting week trying to keep toddlers amused in a humid, slightly bonkers new country… some of us left our husbands/boyfriends babysitting, working or simply drinking G&T’s with other husbands (those sensible enough to have left their kids in the UK) and headed into the neon lit, tourist frenzy that is Temple St.
Just brilliant, a hot night with all the buzz of the market. We got stuck in ordering large bottle beers and giggled at the menu featuring delights such as chickens feet, goose intestine…

Mains that wouldn’t look out of place on I’m a Celeb… We chose some of the more normal things on offer and had a good giggle about our first week as Hong Kongers.

We then had a good haggle in the market, sheltering from a quick downpour (they seem to last just a few minutes, drench everything then aren’t seen again for a day or two and always come at night, I like rain like that!)
Then myself, Anna & Laura found a dodgy bar and stayed there till after midnight…

Bit of a mistake as everything closed & we struggled to find firstly a loo… Stumbled across a “nightclub” the lady at the top of the stairs was horrified when she saw us approaching. And secondly a cab (presume all the cab drivers are on HK Island fleecing the drunken tourists there)
Unfortunately the driver we found nearly fell asleep at the wheel on the Expressway and we had to keep him from swerving, sleeping or even worse just stopping and letting us out on the Expressway by chatting to him to keep him awake. Bit hairy! But in my experience of SE Asia not abnormal…
Think we will head for the bright lights of HK Island next time where the cabbies are more reliable or even try to make the last tube…

Harrow taxi driver…


It’s an old joke that’s become a reality. Every day we get a nice cool air-con taxi home from our various daily hot and sweaty wanderings
Macau to get our passports re stamped and work visas activated
HK Island to visit the Apple store (same the world over, just with more genius’s at the Genius Bar)
Kowloon Bay in an attempt to eat the best Peking Duck in HK with Archie godfather Robbie on his way to Melbourne (fantastic, melt in the mouth, largest medium duck I have ever seen, carved at your table, served four plus plenty to take away for £18)
And many many outings to the park, beach & ice cream kiosk with the kids.
And it makes me chuckle every time as we say with a slight Chinese accent (to makes ourselves understood) Harrow taxi driver. Brilliant.


School site shown here, up in the mountains behind behind the Gold Coast beach, piazza and Marina.

The Wawns have made it…


Finally, we made it to Hong Kong in one piece, with all 6 pieces of hand luggage and 1o pieces of hold luggage intact.  Archie had his new friends Alex & Sophie to play with at the airport and on the plane, which was a bonus both for him and us!

We were delayed getting into our apartment so spent the first couple of nights in a hotel overlooking the Happy Valley Racecourse (Archie chuffed as he said it reminded him of Harrow running track?!?) on HK Island feeling like tourists.  Unfortunately HK Times Square has a big red London bus in the centre (to celebrate London hosting the Olympics) and we spent a considerably long time climbing all over it with Archie when all we really wanted to was get tucked in to some Chinese food and wash away the jet lag with alcohol.

We arrived at the Harrow International School site on Monday and were blown away by the beauty of the new school building.  As you drive into the Gold Coast it dominates up on the mountain side looking like a enormous white palace.(Unfortunately no photos as yet)

When I arrived at the apartment Ed was already unpacking boxes with a couple of Crown removals men.  Archie running round thinking its Christmas all his favourite stuff being unwrapped.
The apartment is lovely and so much bigger than expected.  Which means that for only£300 (!) a month we can have a live-in Fillipino nanny/cook/cleaner, Hurray, they even do nightime feeds!

The Gold Coast is half an hour from Central Hong Kong and is just great, it has a Yacht Marina with restaurants and cafes, bookshop, specialist supermarket (prices a bit like Waitrose, nice as a one off) numerous kids play parks, The Gold Coast 5 star hotel with all its facilities and great pool and the beach.

We are busy getting mobile phones, thinking about getting a car, hanging pictures & talking to some very well groomed expat mums about the best places to get baby stuff (especially Ellas Kitchen pouches as Sophie is being weaned) so yesterday we went into Central HK and Pedder St. which is basically their Bond St.  and took a trip to Bumps and Babes – where a tin of SMA costs a whopping £18!!! but you can get rice cakes. Thank goodness.

I found the HK equivalent of Lombok Furniture store in HK SoHo and spied a lovely sofa bed, so that we can accommodate you all in the future…

Kids all asleep so I must be mad not to be having a siesta myself, Ed gone for a Chinese massage down the road x

p.s. I have added some photos of our amazing one night in London before the plane in a suite that my friend kindly arranged for us, overlooking Big Ben & The London Eye.  We met our friends for lunch the next day, looking back at the photos gave me a small twinge of homesickness.

Pink boobies and a cute bum…


After de camping to the 40+ degree heat of North Cyprus (We were in Nicosia yesterday and I swear rocks were melting!) its nearly time to pack up again and head off on the penultimate flight back to London for 24 hours to connect to our Hong Kong flight.  For our one night in London we thought we better make it a memorable one so we are staying overlooking Big Ben and the London Eye.  We can’t wait to be tourists in London for one last day.

Meanwhile Ed and I have come over all romantic (a yearly occurrence!!) and spent last night (our 6th Wedding Anniversary) back in the mountain village of Bellapais at the Byzantine Abbey where we got married.  We had vodka tonics at sundown then a lovely (if a bit humid) meal inside the Abbey.  It’s weird I can sit there and imagine all our friends & family being with us too, its lovely to be able to go back and conjure up those memories.

So much has happened since then and it seems that our babies aren’t really babies anymore… well especially not Archie!   Whilst lazing at the end of the pool with daddy yesterday idly watching the world go by, a young Russian lady wandered by and they both watched her progress, at which point Archie casually commented  ‘Pink boobies and cute bum!?’ Ed said he nearly drowned in shock… My god if they grow up that fast then I dread the next ten years.  We are still quizzing him now to find out where he heard that from!  Daddy swears it’s not from him, I am not so sure.

God help us when Archie learns a bit of Mandarin at school, the thought of him being let loose in public with a little bit of a language we don’t understand, doesn’t bear thinking about.

England finally shows its good side…


In a last ditch attempt to keep us… England really pulled out all the stops.

30 degrees in London meant eating al fresco with friends, lazy afternoons laying around in London parks and feeling quite patriotic watching the Olympic torch and the amazing showcase of the best of the UK that was the Danny Boyle opening ceremony.

Heavenly, our last week was one to remember.  Even though we were completely exhausted packing up and clearing out the house night and day.   Friends are going to get a shock when they return from their holidays to find all sorts of unwanted stuff of ours that we couldn’t bear to throw away in their back gardens!

It looked like we got out in time though, as we sat in Heathrow on the Sunday, the rain and hail was hitting the windows.  Our sadness for those stuck with the god awful weather again was short lived.  Ed had booked Business Class by mistake and we were whizzed through check-in, security and given our own stewardess as we boarded the plane.  God help us in cattle class again next time!

Area 48, could that be a typo?


We recently received our new address details and were amused to find that we are moving to Area 48! visions of little green men started appearing and thoughts of the barren desert of Area 51 came to mind.  So if you fancy a visit and have a interest in aliens then we might be the perfect holiday destination for you!

No seriously, this is our new address and I have tried to get these new home cards out to all.  Please DO come and visit or at least send us a Christmas card so that we know we haven’t totally been forgotten.

Less than 30 days to go before that HK flight… we are desperate to leave now, the house is empty and actually quite depressing, plus all this saying goodbye is horrid!

On the plus side its 43 degrees right now in Cyprus, so we need to stay here in the cool and rain (had a splendid day at Legoland yesterday in the pouring rain… grr…) for a few more days and hope the heatwave passes before we head off to our Cyprus house.  Archie now fed up with playing shops with our charity shop stuff and is driving me to distraction asking why we dont have a DVD player to watch Cars on. He is desperate to be reunited with his Cyprus toys.   Poor Sophie will be housebound when she gets there.

The Wawns and Wildings are leaving, a farewell do!


Not just us, but our good friends Jen & Karl and and their son (my godson) are also moving from Harrow this summer to Uppingham School.

A farewell party was needed to mark our time at Harrow School. 

We needed some great food, a garden/house considerably larger than ours and lots of lovely friends and family to share it with.

Friends invited, location set, all we needed was for Ed to get to Smithfields at 4am pick up a pig and a lamb.  Then for our South African BBQ officianado neighbour and good friend Gerrie to agree to marinade and spit roast the damn things for us!

Not a small undertaking for an Englishman, but for Gerrie just a small braai.

As one impressed female guest commented ‘that bloke doing the BBQ is what you would call a real man’

When it rained, we came in and watched the tennis.   The kids ran around for hours on end and resembled street urchins.  We devoured 44lb worth of spit roast, 80 sausages and goodness knows how many burgers.   We found the Halloumi for the veggies in the fridge the next day!?

My grandmother in her 80’s seemed to be having a jolly time looking after Sophie and making her way through ‘her’ bottle of wine…

It was a brilliant day.  A bit teary.  A bit chaotic (behind the scenes!) but VERY memorable and (we think) fun was had by all.

A week of lasts…


With most of our Harrow School friends disappearing off on their Summer hols, this has been a week of lasts…

Last play at the Harrow School pitches with Alfie
(water fountains can provide hours of fun!)

Last play dates

Last sleepover with George

Last Harrow School mums baby group get together

Last night of term dinner for Ed, with last presents from boys (lets hope boys in Hong Kong are also keen to give gifts!)

Last suppers with friends

A lot of fun, but also very sad to be saying goodbye after all these years here on the hill, seems unreal…