16 Dec 2016

Hong Kong by bskinna

1/6

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I've been here for under 20 hours so take this with a grain of salt, but I love Hong Kong. Everywhere I look it's neon signs and burning incense and gorgeous skyline.

I got in around 7 last night and found my hostel after only three trips back and forth across the same intersection and two kindly stranger interventions (pretty good for me!). Passed out hard around 8 and slept through till morning, take that jet leg. I made my way to a famous noodle shop but it didn't open until noon, so I wandered around the Kowloon fruit markets until my stomach and raging caffeine headache won out and I popped into an anonymous diner that was crowded with locals. Ordered butter toast, a fried egg, a beef noodle soup and coffee strong enough to peel paint off a barn. Apparently restaurants here give everyone a cup of weak tea to rinse off their silverware/chopsticks in. Wish I would have read that somewhere before I gulped down a full cup of it. The lady sitting next to me caught my eye and gave the barest of head shakes, then gestured to her own cup holding her spoon. Too late. I was on glass two, although that did explain the waitresses laughter.

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A little bit in love with Tim Hau Temple. Huge cones of incense smolder dangling from the ceiling and the smoke is illuminated by beams of sunlight coming through the elaborately carved open roof. It was almost ludicrously evocative, the type of place that makes me wish I could paint or take a decent photograph. I'd like to go back before I leave.

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After a ride on the crazy efficient metro I took in Sik Sik Yuen Wong Temple. It was a much larger complex, and beautiful. Big crowds of people surrounded each of the temples wafting incense and bowing in worship. Many left fruit or candy offerings at the alters. Visitors weren't allowed inside any of the temples which was too bad, but the facades made the trip more than worthwhile.

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First of what I'm sure will be many dim sum meals, and it set the bar pretty damn high! I waited too long to eat and finally crowded into my shared table at the apparently very popular One Dim Sum restaurant shaky and feeling a little sick. I was following the advice of my taxi driver, but once I got there I realized I'd read about it already in the older Michelin star guide.

I ordered steamed pork buns, glutinous rice, beef meatballs, and some fried little mystery pop-ems that melted in your mouth and will feature heavily in my dreams from now on. Divine. Everything was delightful, and that's only about 15% the overwhelming hunger talking. Cheap too! I paid under $10 for one of the best lunches I've had to date.

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Hit the star ferry for sunset over Victoria bay. Akoni's landed and making his way to the hostel, I was worried I'd pass out if I stayed up in the room, but my feet were begging for mercy. I hit up one of the "foot reflexology" places for a 30 minute massage, and it has changed my life. Honestly I would pay another $15 to lay in their cozy chair with a heated blanket and neck wrap again.

We're grabbing ramen for dinner than turning in early. Akoni with justifiable jet leg, and myself with "secretly 85 in her 20's" syndrome. But first, a quick ride on star ferry to take in the light show!