Here I go again. Hong Kong travels 2020
Sunday 12th January 2020
At the Stratford upon Avon Leisure Centre to board the National Express to LHR with a change at Cheltenham. One of those ‘did I lock the door and turn everything off moments?’, and more disconcerting ‘am I really up for this?’, wobbly moments.
This visit is about trying to get to know my family better. And hopefully crack the basics of Cantonese and learn more about my Mother and the life I nearly had. I’ll be staying in the New Territories (NT) nearer to all three of their homes, but quite a different experience from staying in Tsim Tsa Tsui Kowloon in my 8 bed dorm. Last night was spent desperately trying to find the nearest swimming pool as the Tai Po one closes for maintenance in the winter. Do HK ers in the NT really hang up their cossies from Nov to April? I think not. Winnie, who should be asleep at 4am her time, unhelpfully tells me all the pools close in winter, but then she cannot, and does not swim, so I discount her wisdom on this occasion. A bit like me, a golf hater, advising someone on golf course opening times. So I plough on and find one that does have its main pool open in the winter, just two MTR stops from where I’m staying. Phew. 8 weeks and no swimming = grumpy Laura. Bad enough I can’t take my sax’.
omg. I’m sitting in front of a National Express Bus with a sign for Paignton thinking ‘what if I just went to Paignton for 2 months instead?’ No trying to get on board with slightly too much luggage (I paid for and promptly cancelled hold luggage. Remembering how happy I am when I travel light and I can actually carry my stuff with ease half way across the world) and no putting endless weeny bottles into climate unfriendly plastic bags, and taking off boots and belts and jewellery and risk losing my stuff as I am so prone to do. It’s now 10.04 and my bus is due 10.05. I’m a little confused. And the friendly driver standing by his coach says “you’re not booked on this bus are you?”. I say “no I’m going to Cheltenham” – where I’m changing to go to LHR. He says “oh that’s this one”. And helps put my luggage on and checks my ticket with one minute to spare. Hopefully he thinks I’m a confused foreigner rather than a dizzy dipstick. Oh dear. Does not bode well for Ms International jet setter!