Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Another very grey, misty day. It’s not cold but we are definitely not seeing Hong Kong at its best. Today we had planned to go out to Lantau Island and see the Big Buddha and some of the temples, monasteries and fishing villages. However, the chairlift is down for maintenance and the alternative transport methods would take us nearly two hours each way. With the visibility being so poor we decided to can that idea. Similarly, the Peak would not be worth visiting…. hmmm……
In the end we crossed to Kowloon side using the lovely Star Ferry again. The largest mall in Hong Kong is just by the ferry port on that side and I needed a new pair of comfortable sandals. Maybe some new Birkenstocks or Fitflops. Well…. it’s a pretty nice mall with very very top end stores but it was empty. Not surprising when you looked at the prices. I would guess that when the Chinese economy was booming, that mall would be earning big bucks from the Chinese. But honestly…. £175 for fitflops????? Really?????? Loads of other daft prices too. In the end I did get some Birkenstocks which were about the same price as home.
Had another wander up Nathan Road and had a nothing-special lunch around there and then headed to Diamond Hill to Nan Lien Garden, a botanical garden in the Tang Dynasty style. It was lovely with many topiary trees, ponds and pavilions. The central pond had an amazing number of large koi carp. Not one of the top attractions of the city but on a day like today, a good choice. Had a good wander around there and then headed back to Central Hong Kong. Bussed back to the hotel.
You cannot help but feel a bit of a giant here. Everything is sized for the smaller oriental person. Take the bus seats…. it’s not that we have big fat asses…. well…. possibly we do, but honestly the backs of the seats are made for 10 year old children. We just don’t fit well into them. And the showers! When I first went into the shower, I found myself crouching like a dwarf because the shower head was level with my neck. I tugged it up the pole to as high as it would go but still had to bend to wash my hair. The bath is not only narrow but short. You would have to bend your knees to fit in…. And public loo cubicles…. when you stand up your head is level with the top of them. It all makes you feel like a ginormous giant! My nephew Danny must feel like Gulliver in Lilliput when he is here. LOL.
After resting my poor feet, we headed out with Mick and Maureen for the evening. Again, a change of plans. We were going to see the Light Show which a spectacular show in which lights play across all the tall buildings on the Hong Kong Seafront. We’ve seen it before, its amazing. Best place to watch from is the Avenue of the Stars on Kowloon waterfront. But tonight, you could hardly see across the bay in the mist. So we scrapped that idea because we think the ship will stay around for it tomorrow and we will have a great view from the outside decks as she is moored right in the centre of town adjacent to the Star Ferry terminus on Kowloon side. Instead we went out for dinner in Wan Chai again. This time we fancied something western…. I know….. but reflect…. Bob and I have had 10 weeks of Indian food and now 3 nights of solid Chinese….. well, for what ever reason we went to a place called Beef and Liberty. Get’s great reviews for it’s burgers and those reviews are very well deserved. They were very excellent from bun to accompaniments. And the clincher was that on Wednesday night, beer is free. And very nice beer too, a keg of craft beer. We had 11 glasses between us which was worth more than the food we ate! Would recommend this place if you feel like a touch of home amidst all the dimsum. Industrial environment, open kitchen, buzzy buzzy atmosphere. A good evening. We went both ways by bus.
One of my last HK reflections is the excellence of the public transport. The buses, trams, ferry and metro are all fantastic, spotlessly clean, very cheap and very very regular. There’s really no reason at all not to use it all the time. Have enjoyed Hong Kong a lot. Wish the weather had been as good as last time, so we could see it on top form. Wish the shopping wasn’t so expensive. And it is. Not a cheap place to shop anymore at all. But a great place to eat! Soooooo many restaurants. I doubt anyone here middle income and above ever cooks in. There are just too many places to eat out and they are heaving. This would be a fabulous place to work for a few years if you were in your twenties. Lovely apartments right in the city. Plenty of jobs. Vibrant nightlife. Eateries on the doorstep……
Tomorrow the taxi is coming for us at 11 and taking us to the ship. Our home for the next 51 days. Looking forward to seeing our two suitcases again and unpacking.