I woke up this morning in Manila, closed up my bags and übered to the airport. The driver told me about how he was adopted by a Belgian man in Mindoro who was kind to him and he wished he could track him down.
When I got to the airport I was starving. I bought a jumbo airport siopao which was as big as a toilet seat and just as appetizing. I threw it out after a couple of bites as the meat center was cold and pink. Then I found a dish called “bacon cheese sausage, which was grilled sausage slices topped with bacon and squirt bottle cheese.
The Philippine Airline flight wasn’t full and they served a small meal; it was pork stroganoff and potatoes, and I ate it.
I landed in Hong Kong and breezed through immigration, got some cash, and took the Airport Express, which is the train from the airport (on a different island) to Hong Kong Station. It seemed to be way faster than the $20 USD aiport shuttle, and at only $12. Also, I like trains.
When I got to Hong Kong Station I looked around for the subway but found the Free Airport Shuttle instead. I walked up to the counter to look at the metro map, but a lady came up to me and asked me in Mandarin where I was going. I guess I still speak Mandarin. I told her Fortress Hill Station, and she’s like, naw, which HOTEL. And I told her the Harbour Grand, and asked her if it wasn’t faster to take the subway. She was like, just get on the bus, Harbour Grand is the first stop!
So I bussed over to my hotel on the free shuttle and it turns out that this is a five star hotel, and I’m definitely on the top floor, below the restaurant, on a “club floor.” The deal is, I wanted to “do it up” a little bit, since I’m here with a little bit of time and a little bit of money.
My friend Hong Kong A showed up to take me to a late lunch; she works in the hotel business and is familiar with this company. She said I got my room at half price, and that I was living like some rich people. There’s definitely a view of Kowloon Harbor and a sexy bathroom with a glass wall so you can see inside from the bed. Last night I actually discovered a privacy screen that you can lower, if you don’t want someone watching you doing your business.
So Hong Kong is spectacular, and from what I saw yesterday it might be the nicest city on the planet.
Hong Kong A took me to get a bowl of squid, octopus, and cuttlefish noodle soup. She helped me get a data SIM card so I have the internet, and she helped me get an octopus card for the metro.
We had coffee, walked around, sat in a stadium and watched some soccer, met her friend Gina for a drink, and had dinner on LFK. Then we walked down by the waterfront area down by Hong Kong Station and rode the ferris wheel.
Today there’s a booze cruise.