We boarded the plane in San Francisco after I worked a few hours in the airport--yes, I pack WAY too much into our days--and I was on the phone with the cellphone company five times to get our phones worked out so we are not paying for them and not using them. Right up until we gave the nice ticket lady our passes to get on the plane. Still not fixed either...
We had 14 hours of flight! We played cards, slept, and did anything we could to pass time. This plane, too, was delayed because the large guy sitting right in front of me said he "needed" his medicine and it was in his suitcase under the plane. So we all waited while they re-opened the doors and dug out his pills from the abyss of luggage below. Very interesting guy, his snoring and off the wall questions to the plane employees became commic relief for me and the Chinese man across the aisle from me.
We landed in Hong Kong having missed a day because of the dateline and late in the evening. Hong Kong airport is HUGE and spotless. It was almost eery to walk around in a place that is starving for people but is quite barren. Makes you feel like you need to whisper for some reason.
The nice customer service/tourism lady, was so happy to direct us--and ALL our luggage--to a taxi and showered us with "oohs" and high pitched sqeeks of delight that I could rewrite the Chinese symbols for the Hotel--I guess my two semesters of Chinese paid off after all! The driver did not know English, so it was good I did copy the notes down. I was glad we were not driving, the little red taxis were really aggressive in the streets and it made me nervous a bit when they took on a bus. But we made it!
Everywhere we went I was accosted by the Indian men selling something. I was taller, whiter, and more American looking than ANYONE else around. Lady Hiva got quite a kick out of my reaction when they would come over. At first I was nice, but then I learned if you give them a look in the eye, or a smile, they took that as encouragement and would follow me, grab my arm to keep me from leaving, or corner me...none of which I appreciated much. I started ignoring them, but even that did not work. I had to yell at a few to get out of my face--little did he know my Bradshaw claustrophobia rage is REALLY intense! Sadly, if I saw an Indian guy looking at me the rest of the time in Hong Kong I would cross the street or do anything else in my power to avoid them.
We finished the day riding the ferry back over the Kowloon, proud of ourselves for making it around all day without any major mishaps. Not bad for Hong Kong day 1