Hello Hong Kong

It’s not everyday that you get to travel to another country, so here I am, milking the moment to talk/write about it for what it’s worth.

My uncle told me that if you want to travel, travel and see your country first, then Asia, then the rest of the world. I had my fair share of travels around the Philippines and so it’s time to visit my neighbors around Asia. So a few months ago, around June while I was still reviewing for the board exam, my mom and I, together with my ninang, booked tickets to Hong Kong. Then we flash forward to August 20th, when I learned that I passed my board exam (!). Then three days later we were on a plane to Hong Kong, to celebrate my RN status, among other things. Time went by sooooo fast!

Arriving at the airport and taking it all in, I could really tell that the people were warm, friendly and inviting.

Well, most of them.

From the airport we were supposed to be fetched by a car from the hotel we stayed at, but it was a no-show. So, the friendly people at the information desk provided us with an option to ride the bus which leaves in 30 minutes. OR a faster way to get there, which leaves whenever we were ready. It was cheap too. And I say that with all the sarcasm dripping from my mouth.

That will be the first and last time I’ll ride a limo, so for a moment there I was giddy.

I can’t get over how clean, organized and amazing my view of Hong Kong looked, especially at night. It’s a far cry from what I’ve been accustomed to see here in the Philippines, but of course, I’ll come back to the chaos in a few days time, so I took in every single detail.

We arrived at around 8:00 pm and we were so hungry. So we strolled along the busy streets filled with activity and found a 7/11 where we bought some supplies for our stay

And if somebody could tell me what the hell this is, please, indulge me.

And a few meters away we found our spot: a quaint, really small diner that served, well, local (and slightly cheap) Hong Kong cuisine. I forgot the name but I was so hungry at that point that I was cranky and didn’t really care about anything but the food. So was my mom apparently. 🙂

It’s customary to serve with meals with warm tea, but I think the second part of the custom is to have it only after you’re done eating your meal. So we didn’t really follow that part. 🙂

I ordered the lemongrass spareribs

While my mom had these weird noodles that reminded me of buco/coconut meat shreds.

And my ninang had the seafood fried rice.

I was underwhelmed with the spareribs. It tasted bland. I’d say the same for my mom’s noodles. The runaway favorite was the fried rice. I think Hong Kong food isn’t generally big on toyo/soy sauce. Their philosophy, I guess, is to let the food cook in its natural flavors or what not with minimal flavoring from condiments, because I noticed that pattern during the rest of my food trip. I’m not saying that my food experience was not short of amazing though.

Of course, maybe that’s just my palate still hard-wired to appreciate salty greasy Filipino food (and I say that with respect!). Plus, I know people who’ve been to Hong Kong will relate with me when I say that from the hole-in-the-wall eateries to the finest fine dining areas, all restos have this particular scent that doesn’t smell bad, but it’s really intriguing that I couldn’t really place my finger on what that smell is or what particular spice/ingredient it comes from.

But still, I enjoyed my first meal in Hong Kong and went back to the hotel satisfied. Plus, our room had a great view of the HK skyline so I was a happy camper at that point. Sleepy, but satisfied.

And of course, it gets better (To be continued…)

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