Day 22: Hong Kong Landings & Troubles

No photos for a while but I wanted to make an update post.  I landed in Hong Kong on the 7th of July.  Travelling here from Holland made me feel like I lost a day, which I kind of did.

Anyway, start my voyage to Hong Kong from Schiphol Airport (Amsterdam Airport) and then caught my connecting flight in Paris (Charles de Gaulle).  Border checks in Europe are a breeze, so fast, but Paris security check is such a freaking hassle.  So for my carry on, I have one backpack, that literally holds all my valuables, like my laptop, camera, lens, mics, filters, batteries, etc.  And they literally made me unpack my entire bag.  You don’t understand how nervous I was.  I had like $3000 worth of gear laid out for the world to see.  Granted I’m in an airport and I doubt anyone wants to get tackled by security, but still.  What if someone stole my lenses, I’d cry.

During my one hour flight to Paris, it had the worst smell ever, and the most annoying Spanish kid I’ve ever met.  Some guy at the beginning of the flight decided to throw up, so we had vomit smell the entire way.  Also, there was this kid beside me who wouldn’t shut up and had a laugh that was so annoying.  Once I landed in Paris, I literally only had time to go through security and catch my flight.  This was when I had lay out all my equipment.  I had to run to catch my flight.  When I got there they were already half way through boarding the plane.  Then began the 11 hour flight to Hong Kong. I really hate planes. I know I’m taking a lot of them, but I still can’t stand being in one.  I got so nauseous during my flight.  I had a headache so massive.  I could barely sleep.  My nerves were absolutely racked.  I ended up watching a couple of movies.  I watched Rien à Déclarer, Ringo, and a Korean one.  The rest of the time was either eating something, or listening to music on my phone.

Finally after 11 hours I landed in Hong Kong.  I forgot how long the border checks are here.  Visitors check is like literally a 30 minute wait time.  For residents its like 1 second.  They just swipe their thumb.  Once I got through I started stressing! I couldn’t find my luggage! I went to the luggage enquiries desk and asked and what do you know, my luggage is stuck in Paris.  The guy made me fill out some forms and told me that I’d have to wait the next day for my luggage to arrive.  He also said they’d deliver it to me which is a nice gesture but only if my luggage really does arrive tomorrow.

Anyway, I headed out with just my backpack. So at least I have a laptop and my cellphone.  I bought SIM card at the local convenient store and called my cousin.  I’ll be staying here until I find something better.  His place is a lot better than what I expected and his area is really quiet during the day and night.  It’s in Kowloon too, so not too far from everything.  Until the evening, we chilled at his place, and asked each other random questions that you’d normally ask someone when you first meet them.  Yeah, this cousin I’ve never met before, but my uncle insisted that I stay with him.  Had lunch with him at a local restaurant.  I’m not entire sure, but it was like the best meal I’ve ever had.  I think it’s because I’ve been dying for Asian food.  I haven’t had any in like a month.  French fries really don’t cut it after 20 days of having it.  Later in the evening I went out for a sushi dinner with a friend, whom I haven’t seen in a couple years, and went shopping for a few things I would need since I didn’t have my luggage.  Bought some toiletries, camera bag, some clothes, enough to get me by for a day.

That now brings us to today.  Today I will sit at home and wait for my luggage.  I called the airport earlier this morning and they said it would take somewhere around 3 hours.  If it’s not here within 3 hours, I will either rage, or starve to death.  I guess I could call McDonald’s and ask them to deliver me some.

Day 15: IKEA Brunch & Trotting The Town

Ended up having a beautiful IKEA breakfast in Groningen! It’s a lot like the IKEA in Toronto but with a lot of differences.  The one here is much more decked out.  Like, they have PS3s everywhere for kids to play with.  The cafeteria has all the classics, like meatballs, but it has a few other selections that are a bit more Dutch.  You can see from the photos all the food I had.  I had to make up for missing my actual breakfast.  Actually, when I tried taking a photo of the food bar near the exit, the worker there started shaking his head at me.  According to my aunt apparently because I’m Asian I must be taking photos to copy their business; how racist.

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The As-Is section in IKEA Groningen is REALLY CHEAP! Like actually worth buying stuff from there! Like they had their glass doors they were getting rid of for only 5€! You’ll never find that in Toronto! I’d buy them but it’d cost way too much to ship them back.

After walking around IKEA for a while, went back home with aunt and uncle and waited for the kids to get off school.  When they got home we headed out for the town.  My uncle dropped us off downtown while he went to work.  We walked around for a bit and I took some photos, as usual, of buildings around the area.  The style of architecture is a lot like Paris, but on a smaller scale.  Didn’t stay for too long though since it was almost time for dinner.  We headed home by taking the bus.  Once we were home my aunt started cooking dinner.  Had my first Chinese meal in like weeks!  Never seen so much white rice on my plate.

I spent the rest of the night surfing on the internet and chatting with friends back at home until like 3 in the morning.  Anyway! Enjoy the photos!  The first real shots of this tiny town of Groningen.

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