Valuable lessons learnt from A Very Special Trip to Hong Kong:
- When overseas, buy what you want when you can; you never know when you will develop food poisoning on a cruise and lose a full day on your trip.
- When in HK, make a point to pop down to G.O.D. (Goods of Desire, lah), Beverly Centre and Rise Commercial Building; they’re paragons of the virtues of retail.
- When hiking, wear proper clothing, shoes, hat and sunblock; budget enough time to get back to where you came from, or you might end up on a terror-filled boat ride on high seas.
- When on a 30-km terror-filled boat ride on the choppy South China Sea, keep your eye on the red cross painted inside the prow of the vessel and a warm human companion close by; you might feel better by swearing liberally every time you plunge down the crest of a wave and squealing like a pig when the boatswain chooses to manoeuvre his rig between the HK version of Scylla and Charybdis, but remember to take in the savage beauty of nature while you’re at it.
- HKUST‘s campus is even more beautiful than what I recall from my NUS IRC trip in 1998.
- Shanghai Mian in Causeway Bay’s World Trade Centre — nice!
- New Year’s Eve in Lan Kwai Fong aboveground is … kinda packed. But the air is much better than New Year’s Eve in an underground Lan Kwai Fong club! A big no-no for claustrophobics (e.g. moi) and non-‘partyers’ (e.g. moi). Thank God for friends, again, and Pacific Coffee’s orange juice and club chairs.
- Zen Restaurant and Hong Kong Records in Pacific Place, Admiralty, are places I always end up in while in HK. For good reason! Good dim sum, great choice of DVDs. Cheers! And thank goodness I stocked up, didn’t get to visit Kubrick or HMV (more credible than the Singapore one, in mitigation) cos of impending illness, boohoo.
- When on a cruise, don’t eat everything available at the dinner buffet. Rolling action of ship and over-oily cuisine will kill yer. Kill yer! In fact, don’t go on a cruise.
- When singing karaoke alone for the first time in your life, it’s best to actually do so when your voice is on better form than on course to impending vomitting spree. Whee!
- The deck of a ship is its only redeeming quality.
- When suffering from food poisoning in a porthole-less cabin buried within a cruise ship in the middle of the darned South China Sea, try not to watch Jolin Tsai talking about her ideal weight being 42-43 kg.
- When visiting a ship’s medical centre, try not to be freaked out by brusque nurses; if in your weakened state you start dribbling, let it be.
- When you’ve lost your sea and land legs, and are trying your darndest to make it home on your air legs, the care and warmth of true friends and relations can’t be beat. Thank God.
- Home is where the heart is.
Happy New Year, folks