Well, I made it. I have now been in Hong Kong for about 24 hours. Long enough to have visited some old haunts – Mid-Levels, the Peak, Central – practiced yoga (at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental), and to have almost acclimated to the heat.
Three overwhelming impressions of Hong Kong in August. First, it is HOT. The temperature when I walked to yoga this morning was 28C and the humidity was well over 80% according to one of the dozen or so video displays that I saw blinking along the way. The second impression is intensity. Hong Kong, even when it is too hot to move, bustles. I remembered this after about a nano-second, but you get a sense of the constant competition that characterizes the rest of the world. Not to say that we are not competitive in Silicon Valley, but I think it is just a little less transparent. Everyone in California is striving to make things look like they are just a natural result of talent or luck, but that we didn’t necessarily have to work for it. Finally, this town is connected. I have reached for a my non-existent mobile twice in the last day and have had two people ask me for my mobile number and been a little confused when I said that I didn’t have one for Hong Kong. Of course, it is Hong Kong, so one of them offered to rent me a phone – he worked in tailor’s, not sure about the connection.
Yoga this morning was good, though I can feel the effects of the flight. The Mandarin is absolutely opulent. I didn’t want to leave. The teacher, Kim Roberts, was great, clearly used to having all types of practitioners in the room. More on this at the end of the stay.