1. When I disembarked and called V, he asked me to get him a burger from Burger King. I was surprised because he’s usually making fun of me for being obsessed with food and thinking in advance of what I can eat where. I was pretty much shocked though when he tapped me on the shoulder in the departure lounger. V has NEVER come to get me at the airport, not even when I first came to HK. He is immensely practical about this and points out that it is just a waste of time and money for someone to come to the airport when the Airport Express is so quick and easy. Which is true, and I agreed at the time, though I hold it against him when I’m running out of things to hold against him. Anyway, either he was really bored or he really loves me (I think a combination of both), but he came. This did not stop us from having our first fight that evening.
2. The week I arrived it was freezing in Hong Kong. My apartment is on the top floor and thus like an icebox. Getting out of bed, changing clothes, taking a shower, all this was torture. I wanted to get on a flight right back to Bombay where I had spent my days in sleevely t-shirts.
3. The impassivity and self-centredness in HK immediately began to get to me. Not anything anyone did or said in particular but absence of engagement with other people. Only when you live abroad do you realize what people mean when they say Indian people are warm. I’m getting over this now, though, having been warmly welcomed back in office and had lunch with my two sweet Chinese friends.
4. I went for a dim sum lunch and I realised I have missed Chinese food. I ended up eating dim sum lunch for three days straight. And burgers in the evening, weird! Mid-lunch at every restaurant came the banging of drums and the arrival of the lion dance. While people who have grown up with this are probably a bit irritated by the noise, I have to say I love it! I’m like a kid, totally kicked every time the lion shook his head or booty.
5. We plunged right into shopping for furniture for the impending move. The first time we bought furniture together it was a big fight. Every item was argued over. This time around I can’t bring myself to care. Since we’re only renting, I’m ok with cheap, simple furniture as long as it’s functional and not too terrible. We bought a couch, cupboards, bed, TV stand and curtains over a couple of days with minimum fuss.