Final Hours in Hong Kong

I’ve mentioned before that Hong Kong has a beautiful skyline. It wasn’t until the 90s and 2000s when most of Hong Kong’s skyscrapers rose high above its land. One of the best ways to appreciate the architectural jungle of steel, cement, and glass is from the Star Ferry that runs between Kowloon and Hong Kong. The historic ferry dates back to the late 1800s and is a classic way to travel between the two islands.

When the sun sets, the cityscape transforms into a galaxy of lights. Speaking of which, nightly, there is a light show involving more than 40 buildings on the harbor called, “A Symphony of Lights.” Allegedly it’s the world’s largest permanent light and sound show.

I’ll be honest, the show isn’t terribly spectacular. The music it’s set to sounds like cheap midi ripoffs from video games, and the light show itself will probably leave you murmuring a resounding, “Well, that was nice.”

The cityscape lit up at night, looking at Hong Kong Island from the edge of Kowloon, is beautiful, not to mention you’ll see the Star Ferry, and probably a couple junks lit with colorful, ambient light. A gaudy light show is unnecessary, and doesn’t improve it.

I had a final dim sum dinner with a couple of people from the hostel I had only just met on my way to the light show: Taewoon and Sherri. They were both nurses coincidentally. Taewoon had served his 21 months with the Korean military and worked largely with troubled psych patients after getting his nurseing degree after that. Sherri had recently quit her precious position and was on her way to a development summit in Kuala Lumpur. Nurses are always in demand.

I had thought about going to Ozone afterwards, The world’s highest bar, located in Hong Kong’s tallest building. But I still needed to pack for my flight the next morning, which had been bumped up an hour in time, and so I’d get precious little sleep. I opted to pass on it. It’s always good to leave something for next time. I also felt a tickle in my throat. One of the guys in my hostel room had been sick and coughing in the night. I hoped he hadn’t infected me.

I woke bright and early the next day to quietly exit the hostel and make the hour long trek to the airport. Now that it was daytime I was able to really appreciate the surrounding beauty of Hong Kong’s airport. Surrounded by tall, lush, green mountains the modern structure was spacious and easy to navigate.

I gotta say, in relation to New York, the airports and public transportation were far better in Japan, Hong Kong, and even Korea. New York’s transit systems are old, and run 24 hours a day, but in terms of reliability, facilities, customer service, and ease of use, it has some major upgrading to do.

As we taxied on the runway and took off, I felt a wistfulness over me. My journey was coming to an end. I knew it was time to get back to business in New York, but one month had gone by too fast and part of me wanted to keep going. I had a layover in Japan. I could jump ship if I really wanted to, but no, it was time. I can go back to New York and plan the next one better than jumping into it on the fly and improvising.

I took a deep breath, sighed it out as the plane rose above the clouds and Hong Kong disappeared below, and settled in for the long, long journey home.

So long Hong Kong

A post shared by Luke Delahanty (@mistercoolhandluke) on


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