QQQQQ: Meet the Accidental Tai Tai
Kate is a freelance English writer and editor, at editors’ ink (www.editorsinkhk.com), and mum to a very active toddler! Originally from the UK, Kate moved to Hong Kong, then Shanghai, then back to Hong Kong. She blogs, tweets and instagrams about her life in the Fragrant Harbour. Kate’s blog is called accidentaltaitai.
Hi Kate, can you tell our readers a little bit about your blog and how often you write?
My blog (www.accidentaltaitai.com) is a tongue-in-cheek and somewhat sardonic look at parenting and living the expat life – whatever that actually is – in Hong Kong. Like my son, the blog was born in Shanghai, and moved with us back to the ‘Kong a couple of years ago. The tag line is “Musings on parenthood, food, travel and other fun stuff!” which captures the essence in a non-too-succinct way. I aim to blog weekly, but the day job (I co-founded copywriting and editing business, Editors’ Ink earlier this year) means that my posting schedule can be a bit sporadic.
I’m new to the blogging game and can be a bit obsessive over our reading stats. How obsessed are you and what is your best strategy for getting more reads?
No strategy here! I’m afraid to say that I’m terribly lax when it comes to promoting my blog (as my reader figures probably reflect!), but that I do believe that any personal blog should be predominantly for your own enjoyment first, and for your intended audience second. I have always loved writing, so Accidental Tai-Tai is just an extension of my diary, really. Kind of narcissistic, when you think about it… 🙂
If you had a day away from your husband and kids and could design a perfect day for yourself, what would you do?
Ha! I shamelessly holiday alone as often as possible, so if you’d be kind enough to extend my day to a long weekend, I’d head to the Philippines to The Farm at San Benito (http://www.thefarmatsanbenito.com
) for some detox and blissful silence.
If you’re going to be strict about the one day limit (and I have no budgetary restrictions on my day) then I’d start my day with a lie-in – a rarity at Chez T-T – then head for champagne brunch with friends at Zuma. After that, I’d head to Bliss Spa at the W Hotel for a massage and facial, then catch the Star Ferry back across the water for afternoon tea at The Mandarin Oriental, where they’d bring me extra rose petal jam for my scones. Then I’d call in at Hollywood Hair for a blowdry and a glass of wine before heading on to dinner at Caprice and drinks at Sevva.
A Tai-Tai can dream… but realistically I’d take the lie-in!
Almost every time I meet a new parent in Hong Kong, the conversation of, “What school is your son going to?” comes up. Do you think parents in Hong Kong talk about this because they’re so competitive or they’re afraid?
I think there’s a vast amount of panic that’s self-generated, to be honest, and I’ve been as guilty as anyone. Parents are advised to apply to 4/5 schools at a time, meaning that the real number of school places available is always going to be skewed, creating artificially huge waiting lists. Add to that mix the ridiculously over-competitive parents who are shocked rigid when you don’t have your kid in Suzuki violin or writing Haiku by 18 months, then you’ve got a crazy situation that only the (profit-making) schools benefit from.
My son will be starting his local Cantonese-medium kindergarten this September, something that was important to us as we intend to remain in HK long-term and want him to have better language skills than his parents, so perhaps it’s not quite as dire as all that.
Or I’m totally wide of the mark and my kid will end up raised by wolves, scratching symbols into the dirt with twigs.
Time will tell.
Lastly, what’s the best thing about raising a child in Hong Kong?
The ability to move from city to countryside within a matter of minutes, the limitless opportunities available to them and – for my son – the awesome range of exciting transport options.
Yes, I agree, Hong Kong is such a convenient place to live. Thanks so much for taking part in this week’s QQQQQ!
If anyone has any questions for Kate about life in Hong Kong with a toddler or otherwise, she’s happy to take your questions, and go check out her site, http://www.accidentaltaitai.com
! You can also catch her on twitter and instagram @accidental_tt. I’m sure she’ll give you a follow back!
Have a good one,