Published: December 18th 2008December 18th 2008
I tried not to mention friend's name but for clarity of the text I will have to give some name to each of the people I met.
While in Japan I made a reservation at the yesinn.com hostel. This hostel was recommanded by one of my contact in HK.
Here is where the real trip began. Accordingly to my plan I bought a HK SIM card for my cell phone. In Montreal, I choose to buy HTC kaiser 8925. Unfortunately, In Japan I was not allow to buy a prepaid SIM card. In HK that was not a problem to get a SIM card and I was in business. Then I send SMS to the contacts i had in HK; one HK policemen, one employe at HK polytechnic and a student at HK polytechnic. I also found out that couchsurfing had group and there was one for HK so I published a message with my HK phone number. This is much less time consuming than looking at each member's profile.
Before going to bed that first night, I went to eat with Riley a backpacker from New-Zeland. I choose a typical chinese restaurant. I wanted some challenge and
try the cantonese I knew while Riley wanted a place where they had english menu or picture. We end up in my type of restaurant but Riley started to speak some chinese.... Why did he wanted a restaurant with english menu and picture??? Riley manage to order fried rice and tea. That was perfect.
At the hostel, I meet a lot of people and we start to make plan for the following day Tuesday dec 9th.
A Swedish girl Sandra, a australian retired man John and I went to Lantau island to see the giant boudha. After we took a bus to TAI-O a small fishing village at one end of the island were we walked. Then the plan was to go to the other end of the island to take the ferry back to HK island but I received a phone call from a french canadian. Olivier was visiting a HK friend and they saw my ad on couchsurfing group. They were planing a BBQ on the beach in the new territories later at night so I changed my plans. The two other seem sceptical about my plans and they decided not to come with me.
So I met, Oliver (Canada), Alex(UK), Matilda (HK) and Olivier's friend(France) at the metro station at 17h. We went to buy the food for the BBQ. Matilda brought us to the street of HK market and this was quite a experience. She explained me some of the food you can find what they were exactly and how you cook it. Other joined us so at the end we were a group of 11 people for the BBQ. The BBQ started on the beach of HK island new territories very late so we ate until 2am. Instead of trying to get back with night bus Matilda offer to stay at her place. That night her 4 and a half (Canadian size appartment) was hosting 7 people. I left early wednesday morning and went to the China ambassy to get my visa, take out money and see other things. I came back at the hostel aroung 11am. Some of the backpacker that I have met were looking at me and asked "Were have you been?" So I explained what was couchsurfing and how I end up going to a BBQ with people I didn't know. They realized they miss a good opportunity.
Wednesday night dec 10th there was plan from my couchsufing group to go to the horse race track. Sandra, John and Simon (South African living in HK) at the hostel were also were planning to go so I end up merging the 2 groups. During the race, I received a phone call from Daniel the HK policeman he wanted to meet me tonight. So I excused myself and left the group again leaving some persone perplex. It is hard to bring a group somewhere on time. I prefered to go alone since i didn't know Daniel yet. Daniel is a very dynamic man that know the HK nightlife so we went to a place called "mes amis" to join some of his friends. I tried to sms the group I left my where about but the only message I received was "Sweden say you suck". Some were disappointed that I left. I like that independance...but I had chance to catch up later on. I came back at 6am thursday morning dec 11th but I needed some sleep so I didn't do much that day...but at night....a different story.
Again i received a call from couchsurfing that night to
meet with Sushim, a indian working in HK for six month in finance. We went to lan kwai fong to a bar with live band called insomniac. The group seem philipinos and had a good repertoire of english popular rock songs. That was quiet, relaxing evening but fun.
Friday dec 12th, I went to take back my passport and I night we met again Daniel, new backpacker in the room arrived Emilie(Belgium), Jay (Scotland), Sylvain(France) and Damla(germano-turk) and they joined me and Daniel. We went to Club 8 with an all you can drink deal before 1am. The club has a nice terrase
Saturday dec 13th, Last night in HK had to be "inoubliable" but we were handicaped by the previous night out and the lack of sleep mix with some alcohol. I was convinced by Damla and Emilie to go to another island for the day called Lamma. Taking the ferry after such previous long night out was not making us feel any better but I managed to cope with the journey (the sea was not very calm neither). After half and hour of walking in the town all the energy came back. We end up doing
2 hours hike from Yung shue wan to Sok kwu wan. Then all three of us took the best sea food meal in that little town before taking the ferry back to HK island. The meal didn't cost that much for sea food.
At night, I was able to sms all the group to meet lan kwai fong for a last night that began in a pub but end up on the street drinking beer bought at the seven eleven convinien store.
In conclusion, HK has been very fun. I have met a lot of people in little time. Thanks to one of my friend Carlos who study in HK polytechnic university and put me in contact with some of his friends. Also my first experience with Couchsurfing was great. I will use it again. I really like HK nightlife because Daniel knew the good place to go.
Now I take the train to real China. A friend is waiting for me in Guangzhou...
There are more photos below