Notes from Hong Kong

Everyone blames everything on mainlanders, unless you’re a mainlander, and then you blame everything on expats. Hongkongers do nothing wrong.


Stop Apologizing. No one understands you, no one cares, just honestly stop apologizing when you bump into someone, or you need to get around them, or you need to fight them for banana bread at the bakery.


Stop trying to help everyone that’s struggling, they don’t understand you, and they also think it’s rude when you help.


Expats helping expats. Thank you to white man at the bougie store while I was trying to get my octopus rewards card to work.


Instant coffee tastes awful, coffee from the coffee shop tastes awful, coffee from Starbucks tastes awful. Why is everyone burning their beans? Why did I ever live in Portland to know any better?


Everything is uphill, even if it’s downhill it’s somehow uphill if you’re on the island.


Sunday is Maids Day. Be prepared for every walkway, park, and pedestrian area to turn into a party for Filipino women who work in Hong Kong. Enjoy the party.


If you want to get ripped off, go to places that look legit. If you want to get a fair price, go to somewhere that looks like you’re going to get ripped off.

(I spent probably 200HKD on 1.5gb sim cards at 7/11 before going to a shady sim card dealer at the market and getting unlimited data for 80HKD)


You cannot pay for the entertainment that is watching your neighbors and time pass by from your private rooftop. Crossfit is more entertaining from ten floors up, and rooftop karaoke is best watched from one building away.


It’s not cloudy, it’s fog, unless it’s past noon, then it’s cloudy.


Ok, do help people, especially elders, because they are usually warm and treat you like their grandchildren, with that kind of pity that a grandchild gets.

(Thank you to the grandpa, that showed me with patience only reserved for a toddler, how to use the passport scanner)


Hong Kong, and not tourist Hong Kong, is like buying a new pair of fleece pajamas and wearing them for the first time on a cold morning. Cozy but different, warm but new.

I definitely have fallen in love with our neighborhood here, and all the dogs that live in my building, and all the cats that live next door to it, and the market that wakes up with me every morning, and yes, even the crossfit gym that has classes beginning at 8:00.