If you are one of few people who read these ramblings you will be aware that I like beer, walking and food. The day dawned on Tung Chung and the view looked nice. I left the flat and headed towards the hills ipod, plugged firmly into the old ear-holes. I decided to follow the olympic trail which crosses Lantau island and leads from Tung Chung ( ish!) to Mui Wo. I walked along a concrete footpath alongside the ocean. I would comment on the views across to Tuen Mun and the Gold Coast but the haze meant I could not see either. After about half an hours walking I started wondering if the route was such a good idea. The fence on my right blocked any way towards the hills and was marked at regular intervals with notices telling me that I would be fined should I even consider crossing the tracks. I was on the point of saying “sod it!” and turning for home when I came across a pedestrian tunnel leading under the MTR and the North Lantau Highway.To get some idea of how surprising this is try imagining you are walking along a road in the lake district miles away from anywhere and suddenly finding a pedestrian underpass that would not seem out of place in central london. It was tiled and lit clean and tidy and eerily deserted. As I emerged into daylight I faced a sign which informed me that this was the olympic trail that was built on the back of the success of the Beijing olympic games. i followed the path as it wound through quiet villages and tree lined walkways. It crossed the spine of the island and I found myself approaching Silvermine beach. Strangely enough i actually know a couple of establishments here.. The Typhoon brewery being one and the Bahce turkish restaurant being the next. By happy coincidence they are next door to each other and as luck would have it the Bahce sells beer from the brewery! What a spot of luck! Two hours walking results in beer and food! As an added bonus the bus station is a mere one minutes stagger from the restaurant so the journey home will be courtesy of the internal combustion engine!!
I have been busy. Not just with my usual pastime of bar-hopping and surfing the net, I have actually been working. That is something I have avoided like the plague ( or over-used clichés) for over a year.We moved flat.Our Landlady decided to raise the rent, ( I was initially glad, I could not raise it myself..boom boom!), but from “eye watering” to “wallet squeezing” was too much and we needed to find either somewhere cheaper or a job for yours truly. We moved to Lantau Island and saved five meals out and four pub days worth of money.Considering we moved into our first flat with two suitcases and a carrier bag I was amazed that we needed a van to transport our possessions a few miles down the road. Wife arrived at chez nous with cardboard boxes and string. She complained that she had got too many and yet three hours later we needed a few more. We were both amazed at how much our possession in Hong Kong had mounted up. The removal men were a godsend, they shrink-wrapped loose items and took great care of our belongings. i just wish they could have thrown a few bits off the back of the truck! The empty space of our new flat is rapidly proving that nature once more “abhors a vacuum” as in there is no space left.
We got used to looking out of the windows and seeing high rises and if it was clear Hong Kong harbour. Now we see mountains and a dual carriageway. The noise is a lot less and so is the rent. It does, however, take an extra four minutes and fifty pence to get to the pub. I can live with that on the grounds that we save so much in beer money!