Location: Hong Kong
The traffic was so bad it took a couple of hours for me to make it to my hotel on the mainland side of Hong Kong. The rain was pissing down but the air was rich with the smell of sandalwood smoke, which I remember from god knows where that is what Hong Kong literally means in translation.
I was immediately in my element, money changed, hotel checked in, heart racing to see how much I could pack into such a short amount of time. Within minutes I was soaked to my socks and rain was dripping down my smiling face. After the ups and downs on board the Almaviva I was finally there, breathing in new experiences and locations like it was the blue smoke of opium rising from a long pipe.
I went to check out the temple night market and still it was raining so hard that even after buying an umbrella I had to join the majority of the stall owners at the market and just call it a night. I got back to my hotel and hung up my wet clothes and laid in bed for a minute and just took it easy.
About 30 minutes after I laid down Oliver text me and asked if I would join him in the Central district across the bay on the Island for drinks. I paused and agreed, threw on my wet clothes and grabbed a cab. I found the two cadets and the chief electrician at a bar drinking, I bought a round and sat down.
Before long I had 4 cocktails in me and was feeling fabulous. All 4 of us were quite excited to see girls, to listen to music and be off the ship. It was fun. I got a call through facebook from a friend and mentor of mine from Jr High School, I text him back and to my surprise he was about 4 blocks away.
I couldn’t believe it really, I parted with the boys and agreed to meet them later. I braved the rain and found my friend sitting in this decrepit rock bar with two wild lady bartenders. Sitting at the bar I was a friend of mine that coached me on my distance running when I was young. I was greeted with a big hug and laughs about both being in Hong Kong. We caught up over drinks, then shots, then more drinks and before any of us knew we were singing along with Queen and all kinds of weird rock n roll.
We took off from there and ventured further into SOHO. By the time the bartender poured me a drink at the second bar I looked at my watch and it was nearly 1am. I send Oliver a message and when he didn’t respond I realized I had blown it and they had already headed back to the ship. That bummed me out a little but was completely over shadowed by the sudden spins that caught me like a freight train.
My ability to communicate vanished and I was a stumbling bumbling drunk suddenly, I excused myself, handed out a few hugs and hit the bricks to look for a cab. I had a lot to drink, but I was certainly surprised that I was that level of drunk so fast and wondered if something might be wrong. After an hour or so I found myself facedown on my bed and my first night in Hong Kong was finished.