Watch where you step...

I explored Hong Kong for the last time the other day.  Its a pretty cool city.  After arriving in Koh Samui i took a shuttle to my hotel.  The room I have is more like an estate.  So I have a ton of room for absolutely no reason... which is a stark contrast to what my room was like in Hong Kong.

The beach out front of my hotel is pretty mellow.  Not many people on it.  So I decided to walk for as far as i could.  turns out that its about 2km, and nothing but resorts, bars, and sun bathers. Some guy was on one of those water jet propelled boots.  Perhaps I will give that a try at some point.  I had a great meal for only about 10 bucks, including a beer and tip.  It is extremely cheap.  As I turned around to head back to my hotel room, I had a snag...  I ended up stepping on some kind of sea crustacean or something.  So there I was super far from my hotel, with bunch of spins sticking out of my foot.  I pulled out what i could and hobbled back to my room.  My foot looks like hell.  this morning I pulled out some more shrapnel, and tried to push out some of the blood forming under the pad of my foot.  Now I feel like I can walk on it fairly comfortably given the situation.  Just my luck... the one boobie trap on the beach.... and I step right on it.

With the first night under wraps

I decided to walk around the SOHO area and noticed that every last person was wearing a suit.  Apparently I was in the middle of the after work happy hour for the financial district.  So I passed up on a bar that was jam packed and kept walking, seeing as how I was totally not dressed for the occasion....  I came across this italian restaurant where I figured I could grab a beer and ponder where to end up... the door man (Alijandro) informed me that it was a private party.  But gave me directions to a bar he said I would love, and that when I was done...  I should come back to him and he would tell me the next place..  It just so turned out.... he pointed me back to the packed bar i had passed up...

I stood there awkwardly for a moment sipping my beer... until I finally had it.  I asked the well dressed man (Patrick) who was standing next to me..."where can I go to get away from guys dressed like you?".  He chuckled and replied in a thick french accent..."you my friend... are screwed."  He made me aware at that moment of two things...  everyone was going to be dressed formal because of work, and secondly that I was going to be spending a lot of time with him and Joel (there new local rep who had migrated there from switzerland).  Both guys were great to hang out with.  I met Joel's CEO who had lived in indonesia currently part time.  his name was MIke and absolutely a pleasure to speak with.  He really loved the fact that my name was Bacon.. He also informed me at one point in the night that there is a support group dedicated to Men who are married to Korean woman, whom his friend was a member.  Its international even.  "bullet dodged" he informed me.  I thought that was pretty classic.  I tried to find the website... but no luck.

Joel, Patrick and Mike where asset managers here in Hong Kong.  So we spent a fair amount of time talking about business, Russians, money laundering, and tunnels under the convenience store of his clients house that was used to get the girl friend in and out of his house.  Some people have absolutely crazy lives and way too much money.

From there, we were only supposed to stop at one place.. but as the night ran on I am pretty sure we went to at least 4 other restaurants/bars.  One was a fantastic vietnamese fusion restaurant that absolutely rocked.  We had numerous dishes, beer and shots for four of us.. and it only ran us about $100 USD.  We also went to the rooftop of Joel's apartment (see pictures).  This apartment must have been 10ft by 15 foot.... tops.  And it cost him 2k USD a month.  I didn't feel so bad about my little studio in San Jose any more.

Along the way a friend of Joel's friends (from NY) met up with us as part of all of this.  Her name was Suada.  She was absolutely fantastic to talk with.  She had spent the last year traveling after selling her document management company (about 400 employees).  From that time onward she spent her time in either NY city, her hotel in Mexico, or jet setting around the world.  She was truly living the dream.  She also shared the same love for spending ungodly amounts of money on camera equipment.  So we had a great time talking about Leica, cannon, etc.

At the end of the night (for most) I ended up talking to a german girl and her chinese (I think) friend for a bit.  The main focus of our conversation was me making her feel bad about saying "why would your parents do that to you?  Why would they name you Bacon?".  I had way too much fun making her squirm.  The two of us walked the town, hitting various dance clubs.. cutting a rug.  at the end of the night Franziska and I went to this place called the Amazonian where there was a live band.  The live band was fantastic.  The only issue was that I am pretty sure 4 out of 6 woman (while pretty) where on an agenda and very aggressive.  

I cant tell you how many people i met last night.  All extremely friendly.  No Agenda other than to have a good time.  Very classy.  It was a nice change from what I typically see in American dance clubs with people just looking to hunt something down (you know what I mean).

Now all I need to do is explore today, eat food, and make sure I don't miss my flight tomorrow.  Hong Kong is a totally different city once the sun sets.  Its insanity.  In a good way.  I cant say thank you enough to all the great people I met along the way.

Annnnd I have landed

Welp.  I am finally officially in Hong Kong after a very long 15hr flight.  I was able to finish 4 episodes of True Blood, one episode of Walking dead, Guardians of the galaxy and hercules before finally zonking out.  It was good that I stayed awake as long as i did, because I think it really helped me to reset my clock.

I have met a few people already.  One guy while waiting to board who was from Modesto and was flying to some place in the east to visit family.  We talked about all stuff that would not be worth noting here... but he was very nice.  Then I talked to two flight attendants on my way to my hotel.  They were really cool.  both just came back from Amsterdam and lived in Hong Kong.  They suggested that I go to the Ozone Bar, which is supposed to be the highest bar in the world (located some 100+ floors above ground).  Then i met this journalist named Sabrina who was visiting from Italy and absolutely gorgeous.  She was here to film for a show about the best street food places.  She was kind enough to recommend a place that i think i will try tomorrow called Yat Lok.  Apparently it has the best chicken in town.

So I noticed a few things today...

1. I don't really care for traveling to large cities unless I am with my best friends.  At least mid week anyways.  So many people "working" right now, that it isnt very easy to stop anyone.

2. Hong Kong is almost a silent city.  Even with as hustle and bustle it is... there are no horns honking, sirens ringing, or even people talking.  imagine a crowd of 800+ people walking down the street... with not even a word being said.  Its earlly really.  Scenes from the walking dead have more dialog.

3.  The air here sucks.  no... seriously.  It sucks.

4.  Most of the food, doesn't really seem that interesting to me.  Most of the food I have seen doesn't really attract me.  I prefer when my lunch doesnt look me in the eye.  Although I was talking to this very friendly and helpful mom from Finland who gave me a few suggestions.  Infact, she pointed me to the worlds longest escalator...which apparently runs past a bunch of really great restaurants.  Some of which I cant wait to check out tonight.

5.  they use bamboo for scaffolding here. Now considering how modern things are here, i was very surprised to see this.  even crazier... is that it is not just the 1st floor... but all the way to the top.  See my pictures for shots taken at the bottom level and then from my hotel room of the same building (i think) that shows 20+ stories of bamboo (i am on the 23rd floor).

Doing some research....

So I have been doing some reading up on Ko Samui and for the most part it seems pretty safe.  Dont trust people, stay out of the jungle, watch out for jet skis, and don't get stung by a jelly fish and die.  Seems pretty reasonable...  oh and wear bug spray because the mosquitos will eat you alive and give you crazy disease that induce vomiting, headaches and fever.  And thats all if I survive the civil unrest in Hong Kong.

This just in....

Here we go.. my first posting regarding my trip to Asia.  I will be leaving on Nov 26th from SFO to Hong Kong.  From there i will head to a small island in Thailand called Ko Samui.  I don't really know what i will do after that... but i fly home on the 7th.  So lets see where fate takes me....

Hopefully I am blessed with some really good stories and enjoy meeting a ton of new people!!