I’ve arrived in Hong Kong! Touchdown was on July 29th, and since then I’ve been having a little holiday, seeing different sites around the city, getting things for our new house, and generally getting used to living somewhere new (oh the humidity!).
Some general observations, first impressions, and comparisons with Japan:
Temperature: it’s about the same temp as Tokyo st this time of year, regularly 34-35 degrees, but the humidity is much, much higher. In Tokyo, at least when the sun went in it cooled down a little, whereas in HK you’re sweating most of the day and most of the night if you’re outside. Luckily our house is pretty cool (temperature-wise) so when inside with the air-con on, it becomes bearable again.
Noise: no one in HK ever shuts up! In restaurants, on trains, even in the road, it’s just a constant blast of noise. In Tokyo, everyone was much more reserved and kept themselves to themselves, which I preferred.
Politeness: service-wise there’s no question who’s the best. Japan is probably number one in the world. In HK restaurants, you’re lucky if you even get a word from a waiter before food is dumped anywhere on your table and they run off again. Very much a “why have you come to my restaurant and made me work, you little blighter” attitude. Also, there’s a lot of barging around in the streets and on the trains in HK, which I think is generally quite rude.
Food: good in Tokyo, but better in HK. More variety and cheaper. I also prefer the specialty here (dim sum) to Japan (I guess sushi?), and whilst not a big deal in the big scheme of things, they have an M&S here so I’ve been able to treat myself to a sausage roll for the first time in over a year!
Shops: Tokyo more shops, HK more markets. Not really a big issue for me as I don’t really like shopping. The markets are nice to talk through though I’m always skeptical about them (not just in HK, in general really), thinking they’re asking to scam you, either for quality or for price.
After a week and a bit of sorting stuff for the house, focus now is turning to finding some employment, and with that sorting out a work visa to actually legally allow me to stay!