Honkers is Bonkers.
Hong Kong, from literally the minute I entered the air space to the minute I left, was crazy. Flying in was a surreal experience; the clouds were thick and grey and though we knew we were descending, nobody knew how close we were to the ground. Then, the airplane emerged from under the frothy sky and …. there it was. Looking out my window, I got a brief glimpse of the city state and before I knew it, the landing gear was connecting with the tarmac. The fleeting image of infinite cloud-grazing buildings, massive green humps of mountains and a sprawling waterway was enough to heighten my anticipation … what to expect at street level, I didn’t really know. People … neon lights … food stalls … I always have an image of a place like this before I go in to its depths.
This is a city that stole one of my best friend’s hearts and thus stole her away from me, so I had to go confront it to see what was keeping her there. After ten months apart I knew we’d be going all-out and I was expecting the full-on Honkers experience. I got what I hoped for. This girl navigated me through the belly of the beast that is the Hong Kong night life; almost nothing but champagne was consumed, our high heels treaded the cobblestone streets and the only work out I got was from dancing. We did it all, from the Dragon-i patio’s kicked-back relaxation to Volar’s cave-like after hours experience. I think I did alright, for a girl who lives in sleepy Western Australia and likes to have a beer on the beach….
The night-life is representative of the spirit of Hong Kong in a lot of ways. It’s vibrant, fun, in-your-face, intense … it’s out there. I am saying this with all sincerity, Hong Kong is seriously the city that does not sleep. Who has time to rest in a place like this? There is dim-sum to be eaten, markets to troll and deliciously lavish dinners to enjoy. With only four full days, Brit made sure we packed it all in and there was no room for any rough morning excuses, though I did try. Any queasy feelings I had were soon cured when I looked out the window at the city that was awaiting and decided that I could sleep when I got back to Perth.
I’m not sure I’ve ever been so intrigued by a place just based on what I saw daily happening on the streets. East really does meet West here. Explore an endless market in Mong Kok where you can buy a fake Marc Jacobs purse or, if you want the real thing, there is a high-end mall across the street. Indulge in all-you-can-eat dim-sum on a breezy patio and wash it down at a hawker stall with fresh fruit juice for one Australian dollar. But it’s the people that show you how the two worlds really collide here - Aussies speaking Cantonese to their peers in a business meeting, tons of multiracial couples, Cantonese subtitles for Hollywood movies, pizza shops situated next to Chinese restaurants. In Hong Kong, I got the best of both.
Yes, it was crazy. I never stopped. I probably got one full night’s sleep, spread thin over five nights. Hong Kong is full-on and I can see why Brit just can’t get enough of it. Nobody can, it’s totally, shamelessly excessive … her friends kept telling me, you’re not staying long enough, don’t leave on Friday, you’ll miss the weekend! For me, though, I didn’t feel the need to extend. A combination of bright-eyed anticipation, a lot of Uni stress to (literally) shake off and the most kick-ass tour guide I could imagine … I confronted this city with all I had. And I have to say, after getting to know it a little, I’m willing to let it keep my best friend.
Guess I’ll just have to visit again….
Yours from Jetstar flight 3K111,