The Long March: Hong Kong

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Liang Xin came to the hotel at 11am on August 29th, it was only a 15 minute drive to Hongqiao Airport, we chose Dragonair because I’ve always been pleased with the service with Cathay Pacific/Dragonair. They are indeed one of the best airlines in the world with excellent service, we had a lot of luggage,  the airline charges by total weight instead of number of baggage. It was not a long flight but the boys were much more difficult to handle on the plane, I fed both of them on the flight, and from time to time I had to take Li for a walk. The flight attendants were very nice, they were saving the meal for Michael but he never had the chance to eat it. They also gave the boys a goodies bag with diapers, wipes, three jars of organic baby food and baby cups. I have to say it was very exhausting, I always felt bad for the fellow passengers but at least there were only a handful of people in the business cabin.
We were so happy to see my aunt at HK airport, we decided to take the Airport Express train since the travel time is the least, and at Hong Kong Station we could get a free shuttle service to our hotel. Our pick of the hotel was Renaissance Harbor View Hong Kong, it is the right on the water right above Star Ferry. I’ve never stayed in Wanchai, my previous trips I always stayed close to our office so I never  really explored any place other than Central or Admiralty. It turns out we made a good choice, I have only great things to say about this Renaissance property, staff were really friendly, they put us in a junior suite which was modern and has a large area for boys to play, bathroom was so big that we can open up all of our big suitcases in there for organizing. Each room, bathroom, bedroom and living room had large windows with ocean view. We didn’t quite like the food in Hong Kong, so we spent most of our time eating at the lounge, breakfast was fantastic and all free for us. The lounge staff loved our boys and even asked us to invite friends over. But the best of all is on the 1th floor, they have a HUGE outdoor playground so we spent most of our time with the boys there.
My aunt stayed with us so we were able to go out at night after the boys went to sleep, we took the taxi to Central one night to try out the 九记牛腩, then we walked from there to Lan Kuai Fong, then to Admiralty, then we took the subway to Wanchai back to the hotel. It was a great way to see Hong Kong. Another time we went to the Peak and tried the wonton soup, years ago I had the best wonton noodles at a restaurant on the Peak but Mak’s was okay. We don’t really eat seafood any more because of the radiation concern so I only had a few things with shrimp. Peak was beautiful!
Neither of us liked Hong Kong that much, it has gotten much more polluted than I remembered, probably because of the coal burning in southern Mainland China. It is nothing like China, we felt it was more crowded than Shanghai, it was also busier than Shanghai at least in Wanchai. Sometimes the boys would wake up at 4am, so either Michael or I would put the waking one in the carrier and go out for a walk, and there were still a lot of people in the streets. We both liked Shanghai better, even though Shanghai is not a good place to live for our boys,  cities are  exciting but the excitement also comes with a cost, which is too huge for what we desire in life.
We also tried the pool, there were two pools, however, the boy were too strong we couldn’t really hold them, they love water and they just want to jump right in. We stayed for about 5 minutes and gave up! One afternoon Michael and I went along and that was relaxing, I actually napped for half and hour, heavenly!
It was great though to meet up with my cousin Fenny and his wife Christie. Christie is working on her 3rd degree of becoming a nurse, that’s what she wants to do after getting her engineering degree, Fenny just started his new job. Before they both go back to their busy life, we took a trip to the (new) Ocean Park, and had dim sum at 稻香。 I really think food in Shanghai is much better with a lot more variety, and cost of living is much much lower than Hong Kong. I can see life can easily get very stressful in HK with very small living space, expensive price tag and a very extreme consumerism oriented culture. Five days was enough for us and we were happy to move on in the evening of Sept 3rd.

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