Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Hong Kong Day 1

Traveling alone could be scary at times if you have no clue to what to expect. The trip to Hong Kong alone has taught me so much. People ask me how could I have traveled all the way out of the country alone, without anyone to bug. Everyone doubted that I would have a good time but here I am to prove that traveling on your own has its' pros too.

As I took a bus at 4 in the morning from 1Utama to KLIA2, I thought about how great the KLIA2 would be because everyone was talking about how large of a mall it was instead of an airport. Arriving before 5am did not allow me to have the opportunity to shop because nothing was open yet.

It was a 10 minute walk to the check in point from where I alighted the bus. Instead of pulling my big Mickey luggage bag everywhere, I decided to dump it at the check in counter and then have a drink at the nearby Starbucks. Starbucks had an offer for a free donut for every purchase of their new drink. Since I had more than 3 hours to spare, I sat down with that offer and started scribbling away (like how Kendrick always does) while I watched my Hong Kong dramas on Astro-On-The-Go with my phone.

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Is it just me or do you guys always have this feeling of being rejected to board a plane last minute? I had second thoughts on whether I forgot to apply a Visa, bringing unauthorized stuff on board, not having sufficient traveling documents with me, etc. I guess I am still traumatized from the incident I had years ago in Hong Kong. I was nearly blacklisted because I had a small bottle of pepper spray in my bag. Mind you, it is NOT ILLEGAL to carry pepper sprays in Malaysia due to protection. It is the other way round in other countries. (I only knew after getting into trouble) That's why I had heavy feelings of not being able to get there this time.

Thank God I kept the donut from Starbucks in my bag. I was hungry in the 4 hours flight to Hong Kong. Being the Kiasu person that I was, I didn't bother to order anything from the AirAsia flight. Anyway, I was sleeping when food was served. I sat in between a girl and a guy, who I think are both also single flyers. The guy took out his itinerary and browsed through the places to visit. As for me, I only was looking at my planned schedule for Hong Kong Disneyland.
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My touchdown in Hong Kong was a nice one. It wasn't a bumpy ride. Such skilled pilots. Got off the plane and grabbed my luggage bag which was already on the belt, headed to the luggage service counter and asked for a claim for my broken handle on my bag. The person who attended me was very nice and I felt welcomed at that moment. He clearly explained the process of claiming broken baggage to me and had small talk with me before welcoming me to Hong Kong.

As I stepped out the immigration, I asked for directions to my hotel before getting some loose change by purchasing some Vitamin Water from Mannings (Guardian). I am a collector of Vitamin Water and since I only knew about it through the Hong Kong drama, I just had to buy some from Hong Kong. Little did I realize that the bottles here have interesting and funny descriptions on their bottles instead of boring information of the drink. 
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I took a bus to my hotel, which was at the far end of Hong Kong, that was almost an hour's ride. The first things I saw outside the window were men running topless at 2 in the afternoon on the pathway. They were all well built and my friends explained to me that they were definitely from the army, cargo, etc based on their shorts and body. The bus has interesting signs and also seats to indicate privileged seats for the old, unfortunate or pregnant women.
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Arriving my destination, I wasn't sure to where my hotel was, so I spent half an hour walking around the mall which was located right beside my hotel. After asking for directions, I realized it was just in front of an MTR station, which was super convenient. By the time I checked in to my hotel in Crowne Plaza Kowloon East, it was already almost 4pm. I was lucky enough to be provided free accommodation by Dai Lou James.

Sunny came to my rescue and took me sight seeing based on my itinerary that I prepared. The first stop was at Wong Tai Sin. I was also provided a local SIM card and an Octopus card to travel around town. Without them, how could I survive? Some of my photos were nicely taken by Sunny, who happens to be a photographer.
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He then brought me to Mong Kok, took a look around the riot areas and managed to catch a glimpse of the sunset in the city. 

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As we walked on, I bought myself some "Gai Dan Zai", which translates to Little Chicken Eggs and it was not that bad or good. It was something we didn't have in Malaysia for sure. It was crispy while it was hot and tasted like egg and milk with flour. (What a description. LOL)
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We then walked to Ladies Street and Sneaker Street. I walked through Ladies Street without stopping by to buy anything. Instead, I spend half an hour to an hour looking for the right pair of shoes to buy. I managed to buy a pair of Adidas Neo with little animal prints on them, with changeable shoe flaps at the price of RM200 only. (I have no idea what it is called so let's just call it flaps for now.) I only realized I could wear them in 4 styles after reaching home to find extra flaps in the box and with the help of Mr Google.
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Soon, the time showed 6.30pm. Sunny had to leave me while Dee came to take over his shift as a tour guide. He took me to Star Avenue first, as we were still early for the 8pm Symphony of Lights. 
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aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaI only realized then, how many people I did not know of who are superstars. I guess if there was one who stood right in front of me, acting as a tourist, I would be clueless... Here's pictures of people I know of..
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Soon, the Symphony of Lights started. It was directed in Mandarine as Cantonese was only available once a week. It's amazing how pretty the LED lights lit up the buildings, followed by the beats and music.
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We then walked back to the MTR station to head back to Mong Kok for some more sight seeing. We walked from Mong Kok to Jordan, for the Temple Street Market to buy souvenirs. We walked past a temple and fortune tellers everywhere on the side of the road.
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Then, he brought me to buy smelly toufu after I told him I wanted to challenge myself to eat one in Hong Kong. Surprisingly, it isn't as bad as it smells. For someone who doesn't even eat toufu, it actually was pretty good.
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We walked on and found another stall with cold street food. It consisted of intestines, sausages, etc. It was delicious!!! Could not get enough of it!!!
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Before heading back to the hotel, I saw an ice-cream truck in the middle of the riot area. Dee says it was lucky for me to find one as it does not have a permanent spot. It travels all around Hong Kong and it was not easy to spot him. I just had to buy the ice-cream and it was so good, it easily smokes McDonalds ice-cream!!! If you have the chance to see it in the future, DO NOT MISS OUT ON IT!!!
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Here are a few random shots of the area.
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The last pictures I took for the day were of the Chinese medical shops. You don't see such neat and beautiful shops like these in Malaysia. (At least none that I know of) All their shops look just like this!!!
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As I got home, it was already almost 11pm. Such a long day...

Meals consumed throughout the day:
Starbucks donut
Little Chicken Egg
Cold Street Food

Hours spent walking:
7 hours

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