the Hong Kong high life
Hong Kong is not its own country despite having its own flag and currency. It is technically a part of China, one place in this big world I have truly never wanted to go. Not even for the Great Wall.
However, I'm not one to shy away from cheap tickets or taking full advantage of wherever I find myself living at the current moment. Asia allows for a lot of quick trips and flight deals that someone like myself can't say no to. So, to HK I went to witness all the weird with Touk.
We arrived and received our "receipt" into Hong Kong in lieu of a passport stamp. Because it is not it's own country, you do not get a stamp. Visitors receive a free visa upon arrival good for 90 days. Again, why can't it be this easy everywhere?
While by Lao standards Luang Prabang is a city, it is not by the standards of most Westerners. There are no high-rise apartments or things of this nature. That being the case, Touk and I knew one of the many things on our list of tourist to-dos was to grab a cocktail at a swanky bar with a killer view of Hong Kong's famous skyline. Embrace the city!
And that's just what we did. We went to two posh high rise cocktail bars.
The first was a bar inside a restaurant called Felix. Felix has a list of wines from around the world that are all incredibly expensive. However, the view from Felix is cut by the blinds in the windows of the bar. If I had to do it again, I would probably skip Felix. While the atmosphere was nice, there was no outdoor space and you pay for a view that is dampened by window dressings.
Sevva was the second cocktail patio we hit up. It offers a ritzy menu with innovative cocktails and a thorough wine list. Draft beer is also available. My only advice is that if you want an actual seat you should book in advance. Without a booking you are still able to join the standing table crowd, but it's highly unlikely you'll get to sit in the lounge area.
I don't normally miss my first world life, but when I do find myself missing the ease and comfort it included, I hate myself for it. I feel guilty all the time for missing some of the most shallow and ridiculous things. Things that when I am back in that life I hate about it. I miss having a vehicle. I miss radio and television in a language I speak fluently. I miss my closet. I miss not having to use a converter for anything I need to charge. And I really hate that I could ever miss any of those things, but I do. And it was nice to get to be back in that kind of space for a long weekend in Hong Kong. My hair even cooperated.
Our hotel on the 16th floor had a shower with real water pressure. I sipped a grape and lemongrass mojito from an outdoor patio on the 25th floor overlooking all the city lights of Hong Kong and the harbor. Touk and I were living the high life, if only for a brief two and 1/2 days.
While cleaning up and actually bothering to wear something other than a traditional sinh was a nice reminder of a life that is waiting for my eventual return, I'm writing this in my bed back in Laos and I am reminded of how much love I have for this less clean, less air conditioned life. There are no fancy patios for me to sit on overlooking a gorgeous city in LPB, but there is something better: simplicity. That and a group of young women that I get to spend my evenings listening to the giggles of. And they're better than everything.
Even better than that grape and lemongrass mojito.