29 September 2006

1 Month in Hong Kong

Monday August 28th, 2006. This was the day I left Winnipeg to come to Hong Kong. It all started with a flight to Chicago, which was actually in the opposite direction of where I was going. This was possibly the worst part of the trip, with a very cramped plane, and not so friendly flight crew. In any case, it was a short flight. Next up, my flight to LAX. I'd have to say this flight was much better, even though it was almost twice as long. Can't say I'll ever feel a strong urge to fly with United again, but I've done worse. From LAX, I finally hopped aboard my flight to Hong Kong via Cathay Pacific. This proved to be the best part of the trip, despite being an almost 15 hour flight. The section I was in was mostly young adults, no babies or children, and it was more than half empty. I had seats to myself, which left plenty of room for sleeping. We had dinner at 1am, strange, and then it was another 6 or 7 hours for breakfast. Who lives on this schedule? Anyway, it was actually decent food, and the onboard entertainment was quite nice. I didn't even read the magazine I had purchased. Each seat is equipped with its own tv, of which you have full control over. Anything from TV stations, to 10 movies at a time to choose from. Also there were a few music channels. The thing that made me laugh the most though, was Battleship! That's right, you could play battleship, and other games, live on your tv, against other passengers! hahahaha, whoever thought of this is brilliant. I beat the computer twice, it was a pretty lame challenge really. So for the most part, the long terrible prospect of a 24 hour journey was really not so bad. And now I have been in the craziest city I've ever been for 1 month!

Still quite groggy from the trip, my first empressions of the city were a little tame because I really just wanted to shower and sleep. The following few days of being here were when I really got an empression of the city. It's HUGE! for one thing, and there are more neon lights here than probably 5 Las Vegas cities put together. Every night there is an amazing light show 'downtown' (everything looks like downtown here though, but I mean Central) Also there is an amazing assortment of malls, all of which are rediculously huge compared to Canada. The funny thing is they all go up! Like 10 floors of consumer raging goodness!

I had been to 3 job interviews altogether, and I ended up getting and taking the first one, even though I had thought at first they didn't like me. I teach in 3-4 different schools a week, so I get to see a lot of the "country side" of Hong Kong. It is the same schools throughout the year so once I get used to the bus system a little more, I should be able to get to each school in less than an hour I hope.

Also I have already joined and played 2 games with the Hong Kong Typhoons Rugby Club. They are loads of fun, and after every game or practice there is the chance to go to the pub where the first 2 beers are 'on the club' which really means it's our sponsors money. Well spent! With any luck we'll actually be competitive to some extent, we're in the third devision, but mainly it's just a lot of fun. No rough play other than the usual required for rugby.

So that is a brief summary of how I've come to be here, and how I've been getting along the first month of being lost. I still stick out anywhere I go, but I'm getting used to it. Moving in with Mai had also gotten alot easier as we have become a little more used to living with each other. The cat still doesn't like me too much, but she hasnt bit me lately, so that's a plus. In conclusion to my first month, here are a few things I have done and learned and small things that some people might find funny!

1. 50 storey buildings now seem average to me, and kinda small actually
2. Typhoons of signal 3 strength are like a nice thunderstorm.
3. McDonald's internationally is just as bad as back home
4. Hockey puck sized cakes are too much money
5. Buses are worth the price, I even witnessed a fight the other day! With police and everything!
6. It doesn't smell as bad as I had thought it might
7. I'm really really tall
8. AC is simply amazing
9. Honglish is not English
10. I miss Canada!
11. But I love Hong Kong too.

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