Hey guys! Brad here, and I’m wanting in on all this fun! Hailey and Amber Fillerup had an AWESOME video last post (NYC TRAVEL GUIDE!) and I felt a little left out (in sort of a competitive, kind of way 😉 ). It put a fire under my butt to finally get my China video done. SOOOO here it is!
Anything Asian i’m always down for. The culture, the food, all of it! I was privileged to go film for the company Academy Mortgage in both China, and Hong Kong, for about a week. I then extended my trip to Shanghai, because i’ve never visited Shanghai before. Plus they just opened up the new Disneyland (real reason haha).
A note to remember, this was Sept 6th -Sept 12th, Hailey was mega pregnant with Little Greta, who’s due date was October 7th. They say with the second baby that you deliver much faster! So the whole trip my stomach was in a knot, as people around asked jokingly “Your wife had the baby yet!?”… (not funny). But as you all might already know, I made it a week before her delivery, so no sweat! 😉
Hong Kong was probably my favorite city that I visited this trip. It had more of a relaxed feel. It’s still a huge industrial city, loaded with tons of people, and cars… But it has a cool grungy feeling, that i just fell in love with. We visited a lot of locations like the floating restaurant JUMBO, which supposedly was on rush hour 1 or 2?? (the food was okay.).
We then took a cable train up to this lookout on the mountain! At first it was a super bummer, because we were covered in clouds! Luckily it cleared up, and we were able to have this awesome look out over the city.
We then visited the Big Buddha, which brought back the best memories from when Hailey and I visited in 2013. It’s secluded in a mountain surrounded by these luscious green trees. This time it was raining and cloudy, but it still gave a old ancient discovery feel. I love the focus of Buddhism and the symbolism of peace. This spot is a definite recommendation to anyone who goes there! And also to go down to the harbor at night. When the lights turn on, it is honestly the coolest view with all the lit up boats and ships floating by!
Then I went on to Beijing. This was my second time going there! It’s true what they say with the air pollution, you can just feel it. Thats why i didn’t exercise… 😉 (i wish that were my excuse… ha). But the city of Beijing is HUGE! China in general is huge, and once again, filled with people! Luckily, I’m 6’5 so I couldn’t really get lost, and people couldn’t lose me. 😉
We hit up all the touristy spots; the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, Great Wall. I would say my favorite was the Great Wall, except this time i didn’t go to Mutianyu which is the best way to visit the wall. You get to ride a cable car up, and usually its not that crowded there. Plus its been restored in most areas! Then when you’re done seeing all the greatness, you get to ride down on toboggans! Highly recommended.
So when I go out to film with different companies, they have me film part company, part culture. So I usually go out on my own adventures, trying to immerse myself into the culture and capture it with my camera. Most of the time I’m walking around on foot, and in those moments I always tell myself, “I wish i had my skate right now.” So FINALLY this time i took my penny deck! Nothing serious, just something to cruise on. And it was the best idea! It was hilarious because 1. I didn’t know if it was even legal to have skateboards out there. I didn’t see a single person nor kid riding one. (only bikes) And 2. It was so out of the ordinary for everyone to see this lanky caucasian kid, beaming around on the streets at 12 O’clock at night! I felt like I had a hover board from back to the future. Haha!
The night time food market in Beijing was interesting. I don’t know if people really like the food there, or if it’s more of a fear factor for tourists, but we got pulled in and I was talked into eating a scorpion with our good friend Natalie. It tasted like fried dirt, then when you thought you swallowed it all, you had more of it in your teeth… I don’t know you, but my gag reflexes kick in with smell, and texture in my mouth. And this was triggering all those!
The food that I did love in Beijing was the peking Duck and noodles. You can never go wrong with noodles! But especially in Shanghai, I had the best pot stickers, served in the steamed basket at Din Tai Fung!! I downed at least 100. I met up with my brother in law Brent who does a lot of work in China, and it was great. Especially because he speaks mandarine (I can only speak Spanish)! He took me to one of his favorite restaurants which had a killer view of the bund (The bund is the waterfront area in the central part of shanghai, great to visit at night.), and thats where i got the time-lapse at 2:29. Super cool view!
On the last day I convinced Brent to come with me to Shanghai Disneyland, and I’m sure he will forever love me because i did! It had only been open for 3 months, and for those of you who know me, I have a slight obsession with TRON. At the Shanghai Disneyland they have a TRON ride and it was on my bucket list to go on! Imagine the ride California Screamin’ into Space Mountain…! Awesome right!? So we rode that about 11 times haha (not joking). The whole experience overall was unforgettable. I love the asian culture, and people, because they really are just happy in life. They love tourists and once you get talking to them, or at least try talking to them, you see how kind they really are. Asia is my favorite and I’m stoked to go back there as soon as i can! If Hailey and the girls are lucky, ill take them next time too. 😉 😉