2013-01-08   Hello from Australia

From Australia where I'm now on holidays I hope you have had a good start to 2013.
Since the Hong Kong dollar is linked to the US dollar, and the US dollar has lost so much value, it's a shock arriving in Australia to find that everything is so expensive! Only exception so far is a simple ice cream from McDonald's....HK$2.80 in HK, but only AUD$0.30 in Australia...a tiny bit cheaper if you've bought Australian dollars at the rate of 8.1 in HK!

I'm writing this in Sydney where I've noticed that the newest train carriages now have a flashing light that goes on when the doors are closing, as well as a warning signal and a "Doors closing" warning announcement.  Maybe HK's MTR could also use the flashing light some day, to help deter people from jumping through the door as the door is closing!

As I've travelled on the trains in Melbourne and Sydney over the past week, I've often thought how the Australian government could make a lot of money by building homes and shopping centres above train stations as is done in Hong Kong. This could provide low-cost housing, and also reduce the need for private cars, whose owners are now paying more than AUD$1.30 per litre for fuel!