Walkabout China – Hong Kong edition

Less than an hour after arriving in Hong Kong and I’m sippin a ‘Singapore Sling’ at the highest roof top bar in the world! I feel like I’m allowed to brag, if even for a moment, because the last 3 weeks of my life in mainland China paint a much different picture. China, China, China. How can almost 1.5 billion people actually enjoy snacking on cold chicken feet and duck heads?… I must be missing something. Unfortunately I didn’t have the guts to try it. I did however try some deep fried fish. Sounds good right? Anything deep fried is delicious. Wrong. I didn’t realize they meant deep fried yesterday, then served cold and whole today. Yes, it tastes even worse than it sounds. Overall I’m going to give China a B- for food. When it’s good, it’s amazing! (nothing like what we call Chinese food at home). But when it’s bad, it’s absolutely horrendous. So far though, Hong Kong is making up for it. I’m onto a blackberry mojito now. Don’t judge me, you have to toxify to be able to detoxify later 😉
But back to the last few weeks. I began my walkabout in Beijing with my brother Russ and his wife Aleksandra. From Beijing we traveled to Nanjing, the old capital. I won’t bore you about the wonderful museums, but the English translations are fantastic. See below. You get what they’re trying to say, but it definitely provides entertainment. After Nanjing came Huangshan, where James Cameron supposedly said he found his inspiration for the movie Avatar. The mountain peaks appear as if they’re islands in the sky, simply floating on a bed of marshmallow clouds! Break. Break. I need to take a moment here to explain the non-existent diaper situation in China. Parents split their children’s pants, for ease of letting them use the restroom… Literally WHENEVER and WHEREVER the child needs to “go”. For all of my friends with new little ones, please refer to exhibit A in the picture below, no words can describe and you guessed it, that’s mesh.
Next on our itinerary, Lushan…a.k.a old European town. As soon as we arrived something felt different. The air was clean (it’s a tiny town above cloud level), everyone was friendly and smiling, children were running around playing, old people were playing dominoes and cards in the park, it felt like heaven. It’s also where I took my favorite picture yet, the one of the two adorable girls below. Either I should start considering photography as my next profession (I’m still waiting on suggestions from all of you) or these girls were just so freaking cute, they could have made anyone look like a pro. I’m guessing the latter. After Lushan came Changsha, a larger city where we got to witness firsthand some of the riots around China in regards to the Diaoyu Islands (or Senkaku depending on who you talk to). There’s A LOT of heat and anger right now over who these islands belong to, Japan or China. So much so that yesterday I was sitting next to this nice Japanese man who had to pretend to be from South Korea to avoid confrontations. Just a unique experience to be in the country during the turmoil. I even got called an “American Devil” by one Chinese man (he was laughing) but it sums up how they see us (the US) as siding with the Japanese. Of course I couldn’t help myself and with a smile called him a “Chinese Devil” in response 🙂
Oh Guilin, one of the prettiest places in all of China. Limestone mountains shoot up out of nowhere along the river, like fingertips reaching towards the sky. Pic below. Also close by are the Dragon’s Back rice terraces. Story behind it is that one of the minority groups in China, the Zhuang, were pushed into the mountainside by the majority group, the Han, and the only place they could grow rice was up the mountain. It’s beautiful though, truly magical. They literally look like scales of a dragon. So although China gets a B- for food, they get a solid A+ for their nicknames. (trying to end on a positive)
And now here I am, Hong Kong. Imagine if a British accented New York City and Hawaii had a baby, you’d get Hong Kong. It’s gorgeous. Big bustling city, for the city girl in me, and the beautiful views of the South China Sea from the more laid back beachy-town of Stanley, for the tropical girl in me. I’ve had the luxury of staying with my friend’s brother Jason and his wife Ariel who have treated me like royalty during my short visit. I never thought I’d be so excited to see a legit washing machine and dryer either! Funny how I’ve only been gone for 3 weeks and I’m already like a kid in a candy shop when I see these simple pleasures I usually take for granted.
So here I sit, enjoining one last cappuccino and tap water… Won’t be getting much of either of these in India. Tomorrow I depart for Delhi to meet my girlfriend Simone and the walkabout continues. Thanks for sticking with me…









2 responses to “Walkabout China – Hong Kong edition

  1. I love sharing your trip this way!!! Thanks so much for preparing me for this week! Hope all will be wonderful in your next destination, INDIA !!! WOW!!! xoxoxoxoxoxoxo, Love, Mom

  2. Thanks Liz, you are best photographer. You found your life’s purpose, walkabout no longer necessary : ) haha, the best is yet to come!!!

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