Existing Member?

Running away from Home

Time to begin the journey home

HONG KONG | Tuesday, 11 May 2010 | Views [697] | Comments [1]

It was a pain having to get up so early to make my 7:25am flight from Chengdu to Shenzhen, but in the end, I’m glad that I did. In the first place, the early flight saved me about $15, and in the second place, I was able to take my time in getting from Shenzhen (on the mainland) to Hong Kong. All of it fell into place nicely and the only real surprise was the price on the bus ticket from Shenzhen airport to Kowloon station on Hong Kong. I thought that 90Yuan was a bit steep and I was irritated that I had to revisit an ATM, but when you think about the fact that they wait while you are going through immigration, it’s not so bad. I’m sure that there is a cheaper way to do it, but I didn’t do enough research. I just followed the directions given to me by the manager of the guesthouse where I would be staying this evening.

All I did was cross a bridge and I entered a place where there was quite a bit more English, both spoken and written, and more westerners. The bus ride ended at a posh shopping plaza where I was safe to take my time in finding my way to the subway. There was no problem with getting to the proper subway stop, but it was a bit tricky figuring out which exit to take out of the station. There are people who prey upon travelers who are uncertain of the directions to their guesthouse and I didn’t want to be that mark. On the website for the Maple Leaf Guesthouse, it states repeatedly that you should not follow someone who says that they are a representative of the this hostel, and that you should not show your booking information to anyone. This made me a tad bit worried, so I called the hostel from the subway station and the woman who answered told me which exit to take, but I still had a hard time finding it. In my wandering, I attracted all sorts of touts for cheap accommodations, affordable tailoring and imitation watches. After all of that, you will understand why I was skeptical when a woman approached me and told me that she had spoken to me on the phone and she was there to lead me to the hostel. She gave me enough of the details of our phone conversation and she showed me my booking information for the Maple Leaf, so I followed. Thank God she came out to get me because I NEVER would have found it.

I got checked in and she led me to the smallest hotel room that I have ever seen. It was more like a cubby, but I rather like cubbies, and this is the first private bathroom I have had since entering China. The fact that the bathroom is the size of a closet is immaterial. For the next 24 hours, no one but me is sitting on that commode.

All that’s left now is the bus ride to the airport and my Asian odyssey will be over. It’s been an amazing adventure and I have learned so much, but I’m ready to go home and start the next chapter of my life. I’m also anxious to dump all of my clothes into boiling hot bleach water and sanitize everything. Actually, some of my things are looking like good candidates for the rag bag, but I’ll worry about that when I get home.

Thank you to everyone who helped to make this trip a success!

Mom-you were my Stateside point of contact and a steady support line. You encouraged me even though you worried about me.

Lara-thank you for the feedback on my journal… your little sister works so hard to make you proud!

Grandma and Grandpa-I know that you were praying for me!

Kathryn-I don’t think I could have survived Nepal without you either.

Sir Richard-thank you for all of the terrific advice and the wonderful comments on my journal.

Sarah-I hope I can be just like you someday.




What a great adventure you have had. I have so enjoyed reading it. As good as Ibn Battuta! I know that those people who came into contact woth you are lucky indeed. I can hear your voice through your prose and it brings back memories of sitting at the table at Greenleaf and walking the trail at Khao Yai. maybe we can all get together again some day - I go to Thailand twice a year now and am currently planning a trip with a botanist friend and our wives. I also have an invite to korea to do some scientific work on birds. If you ever feel the desire to join in we would love to hear from you.
Sir Richard

  Sir Richard May 28, 2010 10:12 PM

About melissa_k

Follow Me

Where I've been

Photo Galleries

My trip journals

See all my tags 



Travel Answers about Hong Kong

Do you have a travel question? Ask other World Nomads.