Yesterday I went for one last session of Thai stretching - it seems so long ago. I bumped into some of my fellow massage students - took a few more pictures with them, and then waited for 30 minutes alone at the dock to catch a boat back. Normally the water taxis go every 15 minutes and there are crowds, but apparently at 930am all the businesspeople are at work and no tourists are awake yet.
I flew Emirates to Hong Kong. I love emirates, it is one of the few airlines where they still have good food, offer blankets and a large selection of movies. I nearly got through Slumdog millionaire before landing - only about 20 minutes left.
I arrived at the airport picked up some tourist maps to help find my way to the hostel and changed my money. Ren had sent me the cost of the buses which were either 21 or 41 dollars. I'd been thinking it was super expensive until I remembered the exchange rate is 7 HKG to 1 USD. I got off the bus and ended up wandering in a large circle attempting to find the hostel. I was a few blocks away and asked a guy for help. He didn't speak much English but was incredibly kind. He walked with me for 15 minutes, left me at a corner at one point to ask for directions, called the hostel, waited with me until the hostel owner came for me, and then gave me some lychees he had as he left!
Ren and I went for supper nearby - rice and pork, followed by an ice cream crepe while wandering around. All of Hong Kong is shops and food. "As seen on tv..." the buildings are incredibly tall, the ground floors have everything from Swarovski to Club Monaco to Giordano to little boutiques that sell the latest in shoe, clothing, jewelery and hair fashions. Sprinkled liberally between are restaurants and dessert places. Most of the stores have glittery or electric signs which make all the streets light up at night - coupled with intensive air-conditioning and open doors, even walking outside isn't so bad as there is so much residual air-conditioning in the streets.
Today we had a meeting with youth from the Hong Kong Climate Change Coalition. Three officers of the group met with us and we had a great discussion with them about what WYA is, our position on responsible stewardship and possibilities to work together. They really liked the idea of dignity, and incorporating it into their work on climate change - environment with the person at the center. We then went for a 4 hour lunch with the two guys as the girl had to catch an afternoon flight to Australia.
It was great, our conversations ranged from photography styles; do you like to be in the photo or not while travelling, to discussions of global poverty, it's implications and what needs to be done in addressing it. We finally left, took a bus back and are relaxing in our room before we go out for - you'll never guess...
... more food! (I knew you'd never guess, so I'm telling you!)