For the past four days I was in Hong Kong, a truly beautiful city. But some of the things which you see aren’t…
Let’s begin with the second day we were in Hong Kong. We were staying at the beautiful Intercontinental Grand Stanford, which I will have a review of up soon. The Intercontinental is located in the Tsim Sha Tsui neighborhood of Kowloon, the portion of the Hong Kong district across from Hong Kong island. The food options in Tsim Sha Tsui (known as TST to locals) are pretty various, with everything from restaurants proclaiming that they serve “the best sushi and teppanyaki in Hong Kong” to a Circle K where you can get reheated noodles. One night, we decided that we wanted sushi. There are a huge number of sushi restaurants in Hong Kong, so we decided to go out and look around for some. We found a restaurant we were interested in on Google Maps. However, finding it proved to be difficult: there are so many huge buildings in Hong Kong, which are lined with shops on the outside, while the insides serve as offices or malls. This means that, if an address for a restaurant is shown, it could be anywhere in one of thee huge buildings. Somehow, we took a wrong turn and ended up outside a place of indescribable horror: the Pink Pussycat 2 adult boutique. There were things inside which I cannot describe if I wish to maintain any semblance of decency on this blog.
Slightly traumatized, we abandoned our search for said sushi restaurant and tried to find another one. We finally did, though the memory of Pink Pussycat 2 will remain with me forever. The most frightening thing is that, given the name of the place, there must be a Pink Pussycat 1 out there somewhere…
The next day, we decided to head to Ocean Park, the Seaworld equivalent in Hong Kong, located on the other side of the ridge dividing Hong Kong island. Ocean Park is known for its aquarium, but that is far from the only thing there of interest. They also have penguins, which we went to see. It got a little boring after a while, given that I was standing around in a super cold room which smelled like dead fish, while the penguins just stood around. When one finally did go in the water, he seemed very personable. He swam right up to the people watching, and then promptly defecated in their general direction. He then swam away.
I found this to be kind of funny, though not really memorable. We then went down to see some pandas, after which we passed a bass-like fish in a tank. When I walked past, he relieved himself all over the rock he was sitting on. Second time a fish had gone to the bathroom in my presence in a matter of hours.
We then headed over to the aquarium, where we enjoyed looking around an enormous glass tank, filled with sharks and rays and fish. I was enjoying it quite a bit when a large fish swam right up to the glass and released a load in front of everyone. A huge white cloud hung in the air for a moment, then began to fall towards the ground, kind of like the trail left when a rocket explodes. Third time.
Having seen enough fish poop for one day, no, a lifetime, we headed back to our hotel, where we hung around for a little while and then moved on over to the pool, where we swam for a short time. Then came two children. Normal enough. There were plenty of kids at the Intercontinental. But these kids were followed by another two, then three more. It was clear they were all of the same family. They brought their dad along. And man, were they loud. I mean, people could hear them at the airport, I bet. The lifeguard, I very nice guy who was by the pool most of the times we were there, shushed them once or twice, but then have up when he realized there was no way in hell they were going to listen to him. So he just retired and hoped they would leave soon.
I remember the looks on the faces of a stuffy British couple when my sister and I got in the pool… they looked like they were resigned to a terrible fate. My sister and I are not at all loud in public spaces, so eventually the look of terror disappeared from the couples faces… and then reappeared when megafamily showed up, yelling, screeching, jumping into the pool. The couple promptly got up and left.
There must have been eight members of this megafamily when they showed up. We tried to ignore what sounded like the Battle of Waterloo being fought across the pool, then got out. Just when we were about to leave, guess who showed up! Two more children, and their mother. The father was doing nothing to keep the kids quiet, and, I must say, as much as noise doesn’t bother me, the screeching, splashing, and shouting kind of got annoying when it was kept up at a level of 200 decibels for an hour. Control your kids, people…
Well, that’s it. As much as Hong Kong is a wonderful city, some of the things you see in Hong Kong are far from wonderful, like fish defecation, adult boutiques, and a family the size of the United States Congress turning the pool in a Marilyn Manson concert. So endeth the chronicle.