Rooftop Parties, Orientations and Temples

As prophesied in my previous post, a week or so of orientation, exploration and a large night out or two has occurred. Although, this being Hong Kong, not a second was dull and everything is noteworthy. Fortunately for the reader, I am not nearly organised, dedicated or sober enough to weigh this down with too much detail.

If you are new to Hong Kong, drinking, and desperate to show the combination off to friends and family back home via social media, you are on a rooftop. The roof terrace of the central IFC mall and the open-air top floor of a 5-star hotel being the elevated watering holes that I found myself in. The former, an ideal pre-drink location. Grab a few mates, hit up a 7/11, grab an assortment of Tsing Tao, Blue Girl and Skol and watch the Sun go down and the lights come on across Hong Kong Island and over the harbour to Kowloon. The latter, a more luxurious location with some stunning panoramic views and even more stunning drinks prices. Alas, if you can’t splash out and enjoy a boogie on the 50th floor of a premium hotel, you’re in the wrong Special Administrative Region. When not at altitude, the famous strips of Lan Kwai Fong and the hedonistic Wan Chai have been the main places of business for myself and the thousands of other boozy exchange students, ex-pats and locals looking for a good time.

My international posse of fellow freshmen and I have eaten out pretty much every day/night since getting here, and the food is so consistently impressive and I have become so desensitised to it that it all blends into one continuous, never-ending path of deliciousness. That being said, one dining institution will stick in my head until the day I die. That is the snappily named Foosung Street Temporary Cooked Food Hawker Bazaar. A sort of tent that we invaded one night, filled with mismatched table and chairs flung together to form some cohesive structure, menus printed on the tarpaulin-like material that formed the walls and nothing but a transparent plastic sheet separating us from the hectic, smokey kitchen filled with sweaty men, guts on show, fags on the go, frantically whipping up some of the tastiest food I have ever eaten in my life. We ordered everything: goose, shrimp, beer, noodles, fish, beer, rice, beef, beer. It was flawless and came to around the same price per head as a British McDonalds meal. The presence of drunk groups of locals taking shots, shouting and swearing only added to the ambiance and made me feel substantially less like a loutish British tourist.
10/10: Will go again, must go again.

I just typed a lengthy description of the HKU campus before realising I’d written an almost identical description in my last post. Evidently, I am still impressed. I have been back and forth in the last week for orientations. It’s great to meet fellow exchange students from all over the world, studying inside and outside my faculty, as well as some of the lecturers I may encounter. I am pleased with the classes I was able to choose and am eager to get going with some history, art history, Cantonese, philosophy, politics and journalism. Studying can seem like a chore when I’m in the thick of it, but it really doesn’t take long before I start missing it. The contact and workload is looking a lot higher here than at Southampton, but the fact that I only need to pass should take the pressure off and allow me to focus as much on enjoying Asia, as work. It was reassuring to hear from my faculty dean that he believes grades and attendance are only a small part of studying abroad – especially in Hong Kong. That line may come back to haunt him when he tries to call me out on my absenteeism and poor grades. I enjoyed an introductory talk from the British Consulate which boiled down to ‘don’t lose your travel documents’ and ‘don’t get arrested’. I’ll remember this the next time I use my passport as currency to buy heroin.

Exploration has been a key theme since I landed and I have spent a lot of time walking, training, busing and tramming from place to place, wandering aimlessly, taking in the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of Hong Kong. Today’s excursion to Chi Lin Nunnery and Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple was one of the best yet and Chi Lin is certainly one of the most beautiful places I have ever traveled to. The tranquil Nan Lian gardens surrounding the main temple is a Classical Chinese garden consisting of plants, trees, ponds and water features, rocks, and pavilions. One pavilion was dedicated to Chinese architecture and I was blown away to see intricate scaled-down replicas of famous Chinese buildings and to learn how their ingenious methods of engineering, design and carpentry allowed them to built huge palaces, that could weather earthquakes, storms and survive for thousands of years, completely out of timber. The Chi Lin temple itself was just as moving. The stunning architecture of the buildings, the grandeur of the huge golden Buddha statues, the natural beauty of the lily ponds and flora, the smell of incense and the comforting sounds of Buddhist chanting is enough to make even a hard-headed skeptic feel spiritual. The juxtaposition between this and the surrounding skyscrapers of banks, insurance companies and luxury apartments made it even more unique and incredible. You will not find a Chi Lin anywhere else in the world. Ironically, in this pocket of tranquility I lost all sense of time and location, and could have been anywhere in the world. I couldn’t help but feel slightly deflated when I returned back to the world of trains, cars and Starbucks.

All in all, a fantastic time courting Hong Kong. Now onto second-base for some school and rugby.

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1,481 thoughts on “Rooftop Parties, Orientations and Temples

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  4. nissan frontier lift kit 2wd/4wd

    Discussion Starter • #1 • Oct 3, 2010 (Edited)
    If you have a question about lifting your truck, please read this thread before posting your question. There is a good chance that it will be answered here. If you notice any errors, please PM me.

    READ THIS FIRST: I will no longer be answering individual questions on lifting member’s trucks via PM. I compiled the information in this sticky by doing my own independent research, but I am not – I repeat, I am not – a suspension expert. If you still have questions after reading the sticky, do a little of your own independent research and/or ask your question on the forum. If you create a post with your question, you will get answers from a number of individuals with varying opinions, not just mine. We have a lot of knowledgeable members here – use them as a resource!

    How high can I safely lift my 4×4 truck? Why? What if I want to lift it higher?
    Generally, 3″ is the recommended maximum amount of suspension lift for a 4×4 truck with IFS. The UCA’s on our trucks are the biggest limiting factor. It is also very difficult to get good alignment numbers on stock control arms with greater than 2.5″ of lift. I would suggest no more than 2.5″ of lift with stock Frontier UCA’s, 3″ with aftermarket Frontier UCA’s or stock Titan UCA’s, and 4″ with aftermarket Titan UCA’s. Additional limiting factors are down travel, ride quality and CV angles. If you want to lift your 4×4 higher, you will either need to use a drop bracket kit or combine a body lift with your suspension lift.

    These numbers also apply to 2WD trucks that are *not* running spindle lifts. With a spindle lift, you can go considerably higher.

    What size tire can I run with XYZ amount of lift?
    Generally, the maximum tire size you can fit without rubbing and without trimming is 265/75/16 (equivalent of a 32″ tire). This is the factory tire size on the Pro-4X and Nismo models, and most brands will fit on a stock truck with no modifications. Many people fit 285/75/16 (about 33″) tires on a lifted truck with minor melting or trimming in the front. 35″ tires will fit on a drop bracket kit with a moderate amount of trimming, but it is not recommended to run 35″ tires on anything except a “street vehicle” without other modifications.

    Titan swaps and most aftermarket wheels will increase the potential for rubbing and consequently make it more likely that you will need to trim or do a melt mod.

    When I lift my truck, will I need to get new shocks? Longer brake lines? Will I need to get an alignment done?
    Front shocks generally do not require replacement. Longer rear shocks are not required for lifts up to 2″. Rear shocks should be replaced with longer rear shocks for any suspension lift 2″ or higher, particularly for off road use or when using shackles, AAL’s or new leaf packs. Front brake lines require replacement when the lift significantly increases down travel (i.e, Titan swap). Rear brake lines may need to be unclipped at greater than 1.5-2″ of lift, or replaced with longer lines when the truck is lifted over 3-4″. ABS lines may need to be unclipped.

    An alignment is always required anytime your suspension is altered! Frontiers built after mid-2005 may require aftermarket adjustable camber bolts in order to align properly, particularly if they are lifted over 2″. (Early 2005 Frontiers came with adjustable camber bolts.)

    What is coil bucket contact? Is it bad for my truck? How do I prevent it?
    Coil bucket contact is when the coil bucket (top plate) of your shock assembly contacts your upper control arm. When this happens, there will be a loud metal-to-metal clanking noise. Coil bucket contact is something to think about when lifting your truck 2″ or higher. It is most common with spacer lifts. If coil bucket contact occurs frequently, the coil bucket may scratch or gouge the upper control arm but it generally won’t “hurt” the truck. Noise from coil bucket contact can be prevented by the use of bump stops or aftermarket upper control arms.

    Which lift kits will work for a 2018?
    Frontier suspension has not changed since 2005. Any lift kit for 2005-2017 will also work on a 2018.

    Can I stack front suspension lift components to lift my truck higher? What about rear lift components?
    It is generally a bad idea to stack front lift suspension components (i.e., spacers plus height adjustable shocks, although some members have had good luck with this when keeping the total lift 2.5″ or less). Coil bucket clearance, down travel, ride quality, CV angles and stress to the individual components are all reasons NOT to!

    There are some exceptions. 2WD trucks can stack lift spindles with anything else to achieve greater lift. Some coilover and spacer combinations work fine as well.

    The rear is a different story. Stacking blocks and/or shackles and/or AAL’s is no problem at all, provided your shocks and brake lines are long enough.

    What is suspension travel? Why is it important?
    PRG Greg covers this important topic in his Travel Numbers sticky.

    How do I install my new lift kit?
    There are many great write ups on this forum that explain how to install various lift setups. If a how to exists, I have included a blue hyperlink in the subtitle of the component (for example, if you click on the big blue “Add-A-Leafs” subtitle, it will take you to Nomad 13’s installation write up).

    Here is another great write up for installing a front lift: Comprehensive Front Lift Installation Instructions for 2005+ Frontiers

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