85. Dining Out in Hong Kong

85.  Dining Out in Hong Kong

Our first outing in Hong Kong was to the Jumbo Floating Restaurant.  The restaurant is a large double-story boat, requiring groups of us to be ferried out in small boats.  

The Jumbo Floating Restaurant is known for the Cantonese–style seafood cooked and served on board.  It was perfect for us, because Cantonese style is distinguished by lightly cooked fresh vegetables and meat, and sweet sauces.  Even with high-quality food, the ornate dining atmosphere is the main attraction of the restaurant.

The Jumbo Floating Restaurant is located in the Aberdeen Floating Village in Aberdeen Harbor in the southern district of Hong Kong.   There are approximately 500 junks housing 6000 people.  The rise in tourism has increased the demand for fresh fish, and been a boon for the villagers.  Many have moved ashore, and fish on their boats during the day.

The next day we took a young Chinese couple to the hotel next to the Shangra La for dinner.  We were put in touch with them by his brother who was one of one of my students in Hawaii.  He and his fiancee were delighted to have an opportunity to practice their English.  Since the menu was in Chinese, we asked him to make the selection.  He asked if I liked eggs.  Whew!  Of course.  Eggs!  What could they do wrong with eggs?

Here comes the waiter with our main dish — a huge bowl of noodles with an egg perched in the middle, a raw egg, which was slowly coagulating as the heat from the noodles warmed the egg white.  Our new friend stirred the egg into the noodles, and served us. It was fine. I could not taste the egg.

In addition to being the shopping destination of the world, Hong Kong is also a place where a culinary connoisseur could experience an amazing diversity of cuisine from around the world.

84. Hong Kong – Again

84.  Hong Kong – Again

Certainly by Divine provision and protection, Dragon Air brought us into Hong Kong early enough to escape the first winds of the Typhoon that brushed by Hong Kong that night.  This time, we were left on the plane and told to wait, someone will come for you.  I kept saying I could get down the stairs with the others and walk to the terminal – but again, “Wait.”  Everybody left, even the pilots and flight attendants, and we waited.

Eventually, a bus drove out from the terminal, and the whole bus lifted up on a scissor lift to the door of the plane.  It was a people transport with no seats, only grab poles, and entirely empty except for us.  We were then escorted through customs to the front of the terminal where our tour buses waited to take us to the Shangra La Hotel downtown.  Talk about VIP treatment Chinese style!

Our friends who flew in from Beijing later told us they had a turbulent flight and a scary landing in gusty winds.

We had a great time in China!  It was also nice to be back in the familiar comfort of the luxurious Kowloon Shangra La Hotel, where we stayed three years ago.

Another note from the tour packager informed us, that to compensate for our “inconvenience” in being separated from the main group, he had arranged for us to have a room with a view of the harbor.

A notice under our room door advised us of the typhoon alert, and a storm watch center had been set up in the lobby.  Some tours were canceled.

Betty and I chose to enjoy the storm from the luxury of the hotel, and lingered over a two hour lunch overlooking Hong Kong Harbor from the top floor restaurant.  We were intrigued by small sampans and junks sharing the middle of the harbor with huge ocean liners and freighters.  We thought it would be a captain’s nightmare to avoid hitting some tiny fishing boat.  One sampan fisherman was going back and forth putting down a fishing net, then going back to pick it up.  He had to get back to pick up the net before a passing ship went close by.

Our room faced the harbor, so we watched “the busiest harbor in the world” gradually empty until there was not a boat in sight!

Then we sat up late, thrilled by the midnight display of lightning and harbor lights as the storm passed at its peak!