Hong Kong We Love You

Trip Start Aug 20, 2004
Trip End Aug 28, 2005

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Flag of Hong Kong  ,
Tuesday, February 1, 2005

Arrived in Shenzen and had the good fortune of meeting two other travelers, Kate and Andy from England, who were going to the same exact hostel in Hong Kong, so we go off to catch the 45 minute train to Hong Kong together. Hong Kong seems really great, the trains and subways are amazing and fast, clean, and efficient - the best I've ever been on and HK is so easy yo get around. Its like a combination of Japanese train efficiency and the common sense of the western city grid. In Japan, the trains are always on time but when you get off the train its just a maze of streets and backalleys...in the west, its easy to find your way but you never know when your public transport will arrive or if it'll get there. PLUS, English is an official language here and everyone speaks it amazingly well, I mean,having taught in Japan and China and traveled around Asia, it's just weird to hear English with a western accent, look up, and see an Asian speaking it...to me anyway! Anyway, we check in and go out for lunch and then head off in seperate directions b/cI have a few errands to run, but it turns out that both places I have to go are on this walking route through the central district, so Idecide to walk it. It first takes you by the harbor and then your in the middle of these giant, modern, glass and steel office and department store buildings and suddenly, there are brilliant garden w/a tropical setting and a waterfall and birds everywhere and it all drowns out the city noises and you feel like youre in some natural setting. After a few minutes I continue on and am walking past these huge structures and I come to Hong Kong park and its absolutely an oasis in the middle of towering skyscrapers. Its beautiful with tropical trees, a lush garden, a conservatory, a walk-through aviary, sports park, waterfalls, and even a weding chapel, of which is saw two seperate wedding parties and brides and grooms. I really dug it and wandered around a long time, but left after an hour to get to the US embassy b/c I have no more romm in my passport and have to have them add more pages for visa stamps.

That night, Kate and Andy and I go off to Soho, a big restaurant and bar district and find a Vietnamese restaurant, named Bon Appetit and eat Chinese food, while in downtown Hong Kong! There was also a great Malay guy with an Elvis hairstyle and the food was good, so we had fun. The we just walked about and wandered around and explored the streets and hills in the area and went back to catch some sleep, but decided that we must come back tomorrow night for a night of drinking and fun!
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