Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Macau was really filled with eating and shopping. Both were thanks to my 2 aunts. Basically we walked around for more than 10 hours every single day. But it’s ok because we were fuelled by good food with the exception of the breakfast in Shenzhen because none of us were used to the food. I mean since when did xiao long baos have the same kind of skin as char siew baos???
But anyway the trip was humbling in a way because it felt super overwhelming to actually see and feel for myself just how densely populated HK and China are. Literally because feeling the people is just unavoidable…there is no concept of personal space because the streets are always packed. And according to a salesperson, it’s really normal and when the holidays arrive, you can’t even move on the streets. I was pretty paranoid about being burned by the smokers who always casually dangle their smokes between their fingers.
If you think our Orchard road is crowded on weekends…I have to tell you it’s a daily occurrence over there and if you think our trains are packed during peak hours…I also have to tell you that it’s always peak hours on their public transport.
My impression of Hong Kong is a bustling city filled with people who don’t stop from the moment they wake up till the moment they fall asleep in their houses. They walk at a crazy fast pace and are pretty impatient if you block their way. We got quite a lot of tsks, glares and a few cursings under the breaths cause my aunt couldn’t walk as fast. I don’t know why but they insist on pushing carts on crowded streets and those can really hurt if you’re unfortunate/slow enough to be bumped by them. Can you believe it, even the clouds don’t stop over Hong Kong. And most of them thought we were Mainlanders so they either ignored us or treated us curtly. But I like that they apply sanitisers to the handrails of escalators in their MTR (which is our MRT); I was more at ease holding onto them (which was what the announcement repeated reminded us to) with the whole bird flu case and all.
I couldn’t really get much of Shenzhen since we only stopped over for 2 nights and we didn’t really go exploring. We spent all our time exploring the malls which were crazy big and my dad admitted that he was paranoid that a fire would break out and we would all die. His concern was understandable. We were in this wholesale distribution mall and the corridors were very packed and needless to say we were surrounded by the all-too-flammable clothes. Some of the shopkeepers were pretty scary but that should not deter you from bargaining with them. A word of caution: If you’re asthmatic, claustrophobic or anemic then don’t go. There are too many people packed into those corridors and if you faint, I’m not sure if anyone will notice.
Oh and it is indeed very loud in Shenzhen because they have loudspeakers/loudhailers blasting the latest promotion they have going on in their shops. They also have giant LCD or whatever TVs blasting music…I think ours are mostly silent ones? But anyway, it just adds to the hubbub of noise and unless you shout, you really won’t be heard.
Finally we got to Macau. There’s a whole lot of construction still going on in Macau but once you go past them, Macau’s presented to you doused in gold, dressed in glitter and topped with sparkles. Macau feels like Hong Kong’s rich cousin or something. The buildings of Macau themselves offer enticing peeks into the riches they might offer you or more possibly, take away from you. I enjoyed Macau’s foods like the Portugese egg tarts, pork chop bun and Portugese baked rice (it has yet to appear on my Instagram). I didn’t manage to try their steamed milk pudding though but I will…maybe when my aunt arranges another trip next year. Macau’s weather was pretty unpredictable though…the rain prevented us from seeing the landmarks but oh well at least we left with our stomachs full.
So that’s it for my summer trip, most photos are on Instagram. I don’t think I’ll be going anywhere else if I’m going to work…
But for now, summer still stretches very far ahead of us.