Friday, April 05, 2013

Hello, Hong Kong!

I've made it to Hong Kong and have completely switched time zones again.

My trip here was nothing short of interesting. I flew from Amsterdam to Moscow to Hong Kong. On the first flight, I met two very nice people. One is a designer originally from Korea and the other is a dancer / dance teacher originally from Russia. Both now live in Amsterdam so we all shared experiences about the city and moving to different cultures.

During the flight, one of the people mentioned a dislike of the Moscow airport. I wondered what could be different, but I soon found out. The moment I landed, I got a text from Greg that said "don't look at your phone until you're through security in this airport!" It's a good thing he texted me, because that's just what I was about to do!

Once inside the airport, the staff was not especially happy or helpful. On the way to my gate, I noticed two things. First, I was very warm. It felt like summer to me in the airport, but looking out the window, I could see lots of snow. Second, people were smoking inside the airport. I had heard about this before, but didn't really believe it was possible. Sure enough, people were smoking and the airport smelled a bit like a casino to me. While standing at my gate, a bird also flew by inside...

The flight itself was okay. I sat next to a very nice man who clearly had either been traveling for days or had different standards on bathing than me. Because of this, I didn't end up sleeping at all on the eight hour flight to Hong Kong. I did get a chance to watch Argo though. It was amazing! And another interesting thing-- the in flight magazine had an article about Lindsey Lohan. It was about what an amazing actress she is, how bad her father is, and how the tabloids in the US are unfairly persecuting her and ruining her career. Poor Lindsey was the theme. No wonder she goes abroad so often!

Once we landed in Hong Kong, things suddenly became much more calm. The airport was the most organized chaos I've seen so far. Walking through the airport, there were a number of kiosks of very serious looking people. They each said "temperature reading station." They would stare as you walk by. My only guess is that if you look sick, they pull you aside and take your temperature. I just wonder what happens if you have a fever.

The line to go through immigration was huge, but super efficient. The agent took my passport, read through it, stapled in a tourist visa of sorts, and handed it back to me. There was no need for conversation. No need to say hello is another language. No pulling out all of my future reservations. It was nice and a big relief.

I'm staying with a friend from my building back home in Memphis, Shea. Shea is out of town today so two of his friends set me up in his apartment once I arrived. Getting here was easy because he sent some of the best directions I've ever seen. They were written out step by step with photos of every sign or line or building I needed to look for.

So far, I've had piece of pizza and a big nap (a rule breaker for switching time zones). I think I may stay in tonight and rest, so I will be more energetic tomorrow. Hopefully, I will actually sleep!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

have a great time