J'Adore Cette Ville!
Hong Kong Travel Blog› entry 9 of 11 › view all entries
December 8th, 2008 – by: JeAr
I couldn't sleep. I had to do something else other than lying in my bed and trying to shut my brain off. A quick look at my watch revealed that it was barely midnight. That's it - I'm going out.
So, I got up and decided that I was hungry (although my stomach didn't really 'think' so), and went to my best friend's place. After spending about an hour there, eating as slowly as I could manage to kill as much time as possible, I got out and walked the entire length of Hennessy Road from McDonald's all the way to Empire Hotel and back If you've been to HK, you'd know how far I walked. But that was the purpose, to kill time, and hopefully, to feel tired enough to sleep.
Walking alone at night, just like what I did in Macau, gave me a different perspective of HK, and also helped me to process in my brain everything that's happened so far on this trip, instead of letting it all pass me by like a blur and remember it when I get back in Manila. I tried to look for internet cafes along the way, but there just wasn't any. I did bump into one of the Filipinas I'd met the previous night (or was it day?), but I couldn't remember her name hehehe. Oh well...
Okay, I'd killed enough time. Three hours, to be exact. Must go back to the hostel now. Good night, Hong Kong!
The Peak Tower
Today's my last full day in Hong Kong, and my lips are so chapped from the cold! Random, I know! :P
Despite my intention to wake up early, I got up at around noon and started my day pretty late.
The tram ride up the hill was already an experience in itself. You go up for around 10 minutes in an almost 45-degree angle, and from time to time, you'd get a peek of what's to come. I was on the wrong side of the tram, so I had to crane my neck to have a look.
Going up the deck via the escalators, I was barely able to contain my excitement. A couple of minutes and 5 storeys later, I reached the top. There it was, Hong Kong in its full glory. Ahhh... another dream fulfilled. There was an instance of surrealism as I stared in awe at the sight before me. Am I really here? Then someone bumped me from behind. Oh, there's the annoyingly rude tourist! Guess I really am here! And for the first few minutes, I was able to enjoy the place without dodging the occasional tourist cameras too much. Then came the rest of them.
Now, the one thing that really annoys me, aside from people bumping you without saying sorry, are people who refuse to take your photo after you ask them politely to do so. I mean, yes it's a request, and therefore can be refused, but seriously, it's tourist etiquette! I was asked 5 times to take people's pics up there, and I happily obliged. But, the karma I got was to be refused... twice! What, do I look weird or something? The last guy I took a pic of looked weird, but I didn't refuse? Grrr! That's the only time I felt that it sucks to travel alone.
Because of this, my shyness took over. I waited for an hour to muster the courage again to ask someone to take my pic. The lucky person for the job was a young Chinese guy who was nice enough to return the favor after I took 2 pics of his family.
After spending quite some time at the deck (partly because it's 10 dollars more expensive hehehe), I moved to The Peak Galleria, a shopping and entertainment place right next to the tower. I didn't go shopping, but like I said, I love malls, so I walked around for a bit before going to the mall's deck to take more pics, this time at a different angle. Then, before 6PM, I went to take the tram back to the city. Thinking that the tram would turn around and go downhill head-on, I took the seat on the other side of the tram so I'd see the view, but to my surprise, the tram went downhill in reverse.
A Symphony of Lights
I went back to Central to catch another train that would take me to the Kowloon area, which meant there would be some underwater tunnel action involved! How exciting!
So, upon exiting Tsim Sha Tsui Station, I found myself in a maze of pedestrian underground walkways (some still under construction), but like everything in HK, it didn't take me long to figure out where I needed to go. The goal was to get to the Hong Kong Cultural Center for an unparalleled view of one of HK's main tourist attractions - the Symphony of Lights. What is it, you may ask? Well, it's pretty much self-explanatory. Lol kidding. Just see the review below, please.
It was my first time in Kowloon, so naturally, I felt that exhilirating feeling of being in a new place. I devoured everything that I saw, both with my eyes and with the camera. Everything was so colorful, so full of life. I loved it! But, nothing could prepare me for the delightful sight that was to come. As I was making my way through the convention center, I finally had my first glimpse of the stuff that HK postcards are made of - the HK skyline at night in all its glory. Ahhh, skyscraper heaven. I think I died right there and then.
It might sound weird, especially since I just came from Victoria Peak which gave me the same view. But, it's just not that same! From up the hill, you'd get a bird's eye view-ish of HK, but in Kowloon, you'd see it a different way. Moreover, seeing the skyline during the day gives you a view of glass-and-steel towers with the blue sky reflecting on them (if you're lucky), and it's a beautiful sight to behold.
Enough with the blabber. So, I got there pretty early (around 6.30), and the show wasn't until 8PM. So, I had plenty of time to explore the area. Deciding to eat dinner when I get back to HK Island after the show, I made my way to the Avenue of Stars, not having any idea which names were on the 'walk of fame'. There were some cheesy, tourist stuff there that I would've tried myself, such as sitting on a director's chair, or pretending to be shooting a film, and it again made me all the more aware that I was alone and that no one would take my picture.
At around 7.30, I went back to the area where the observation deck was to rest my always-aching feet. I had to give it to HK - they built a coliseum-like seating area where tourists could sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. Now that could never happen in Manila. Anyway, after taking a comfy spot with a 180-degree view, I tried warming myself up while taking in my surrounding. But, I had some form of short 'entertainment' while I waited for the actual main attraction, and it came in the form of a drunk Israeli man who tried to hit on/talk to the blond woman sitting next to me. The bastard wanted to squeeze himself in between me and the girl, despite the space being obviously small. So the spectacle went like this:
Guy: Can I sit here?
Guy: Thank you.
Girl: *pretends she didn't hear anything*
*more awkward silence*
Guy: Okay, let me start from the beginning. I am from Israel, and you?
Girl: *looks the other way*
Guy: Okay, sorry to bother you. Good night.
*guy walks away*
*cues song - "Lonely.
Bwahahaha!!! Bwahahaha!!! Bwahahaha!!! Poor bastard. It was funny as hell, though! :D
At fifteen minutes before 8, a recorded voice announced the event to come in 3 languages. Anticipation was building up. Then, on the dot, the show started. I wanted to enjoy the whole thing without any interruption, so I didn't bother taking any pics during the entire show, which lasted for about 15 minutes. I would have liked my pic taken after the show, but again, my shyness took over. oh well, time to go.
My stomach was already grumbling angrily by the time that I got to the other side. I tried to look for KFC, but still ended up having dinner at McDonald's. Then, when I got back to my room, my ever-present roommate was there. Now why was I not surprised.
Last night in Hong Kong, and there I was, inside my room, with my boring roommate. Yeah, whatever.
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