I am rarely the sight seeing tourist type, I would rather sit an a dingy back alley trying to fit in with the locals and wander through the ‘burbs trying to take it all in like a sponge. Their food, their customs. It’s the least I can do considering I have done very little when it comes to learning their language.
But I thought I would bend my own beliefs slightly and join the hoards of tourists and venture to the Peak. Universally lauded as the seminal experience whilst in Hong Kong, I could spare a few hours so the decision was made. Some Googling later and I thought I would take ye-oldie train up the hill and then take one of a number of paths down.
My train of thought was it would be easier going down the hill rather than up given potential energy, gravity and those other things we learnt about in Grade 11 Maths II. The train has been around for over 100 years and gladly the Hong Kong Railways have kept pace with technology. The marketing brochure mentioned state of the art technology mixed with the old machinery that would make your Grandparents blush. So I was fairly confident I wasn’t going to die.
So I attach myself to the end of the line and buy my one way ticket. Fortunately it wasn’t too long before I took my seat next to a European 30 something who nearly lost his hand at the enterance of the tunnel in the quest for the elusive perfect shot. I was too busy making sure my wallet and loose change didn’t spill down the back of the carriage.
And before you could say “I would have like to see the silly European hurt himself as a way to teach him a lesson” we were at the highest point in Hong Kong.
Great view, worth doing. Love the fact you can see the height of technology down below but the bamboo scaffolding in their on the left.
There was a wax museum and the normal gift shops with their underwhelming souvenirs. I just choose not to spend my money on a postcard when you can buy a rubber chicken. Plus I needed two bottles of water for the descent. I chose the path that looked the like it could be handled solo. Once I conquer this I would derserve a red bean bun.
Following the signs I started. Visions of my name being mentioned in the same breath as Hillary, Columbus and Armstrong. Everything was going according to plan until I lost my footing twice and took two tumbles in quick succession. It was about then I realised that my Converse had no tread and had no place on the side on mountain.
After careful consideration I opted to go back to the top and catch the train back down. No injuriesto report other than dented pride. Next time I will pack more than one pair of shoes.
So I went strolling through the city and drowned myself in some plain congee with peanuts. It was one of the few that was written in English even though the lady behind the counter couldn’t speak any. I had to stand on my tòes and point as if I was the local weatherman.
All the congee vendors have the same fit out. Ill matched furniture, communal seating and the same brownish tiles that have been in your Aunty’s house that went out of style in the 1980s. Strictly substance over style.
It’s not a tourist haunt so the locals are pleased to see an outsider enjoy their beloved cuisine. So excited were they I was given a free Chinese doughnut which is used to dunk and eat however you please
The lesson here is you may lose some respect with a poor choice of footwear but this can be regained if you like a bowl of steaming porridge.