“Unfortunately, the clock is ticking, the hours are going by. The past increases, the future recedes. Possibilities decreasing, regrets mounting.”
― Haruki Murakami
Our time in Hong Kong is highlighted by Sam’s enthusiasm and generosity. I’m lucky to have been able to travel this city with the Hamilton family, him, and his wife. They were a blast to hang with and I fully enjoyed exploring the city with everyone. Day two, with the weather cooperating with us, we put on some miles and I snap a lot of photos. Here’s the dump, starting with the view we have while we rub our tired eyes.
After Victoria Peak, we wandered about town, bought some wine, got some lunch, and then attempted to go see the [Big Buddha](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tian_Tan_Buddha). What we didn’t know was that the cable cars to carry you there were shut down for three weeks of maintenance. I would have loved to see it, but I also had ever-present grumblings from my digestive system. It might have been for the better, for me at least, that we headed back to the hotel. The hour and a half one-way bus ride alternative to the cable cars, in hindsight, would have been a terrible idea.
The video below is a little long, and again unedited. 4:40 minutes but is a taste of the HK subway in action. This particular ride is mostly above ground and allows you to see out on the bay.
After we got back to the hotel we all decided to head up to the infinity pool at The W.
After the pool, we all got ready for dinner. We met in the lobby, I excused myself, and everyone went and had a good time. I, however, went back to my room and dealt with whatever Hong Kong had given me. Luckily, The W has very nice bathrooms. Also, surprising considering how daring and careless I had been throughout the trip in arguably riskier countries. The next day we would meet at 5:30 AM as the rest of the group would move to Shenzhen to catch a flight to Chongqing to take a tour down the Yangtze and later tour Beijing and The Great Wall.
I took my time getting my things together and then made it down three levels subterranean beneath the W. The Kowloon subway station is below the mall which is below the hotel. The added bonus of this is the Airport Express. Buy a rather reasonably priced ticket ($13US, I think) then find your airline and check in. That’s right, directly below the hotel I checked into my flight, gave them my bags, got my boarding pass and seat assignment. Then go another level down, board the clean commuter style train, and be whisked off to the airport. Only two stops stood between me and Hong Kong International. That could be the most impressive thing about Hong Kong! New Yorkers long for such a solution. Imagine a single purpose train that went from Penn to Grand, to Jackson Heights, to LGA, then JFK. That’s all it did. You would check your bags etc before boarding the train. It’ll never happen.
That could be the most impressive thing about Hong Kong! New Yorkers long for such a solution. Imagine a single purpose train that went from Penn to Grand, to Jackson Heights, to LGA, then JFK. That’s all it did. You would check your bags etc before boarding the train. It’ll never happen.
Hong Kong International is a slick, clean airport and is like a mall. Just like the entire city it represents. I got a latte and some fruit, hooked into the free WiFi so I could call my parents and catch up. I learned US-bound flights from Asia have second screenings at the gate. Which led to my bottle of water for the flight being thrown out, but at least Cathay Pacific is an amazing airline and gave me as much of whatever I wanted on the flight, including Cabernet. Sixteen hours later, the city I call home greeted me. I promptly slept a lot, uncontrollably.
“A journey, after all, neither begins in the instant we set out, nor ends when we have reached our door step once again. It starts much earlier and is really never over, because the film of memory continues running on inside of us long after we have come to a physical standstill. Indeed, there exists something like a contagion of travel, and the disease is essentially incurable.”
― Ryszard Kapuściński