Stuck on the island

Everybody who lives on one of the Outlying Islands of Hong Kong and commutes to work by boat says the same thing — that when the weekend arrives, it is really hard to leave the island and go into the city. You just get stuck. This morning I woke up with every intention of heading over to Hong Kong island to do some much needed shopping, but much like Homer in The Odyssey who found himself waylaid on Kalypso’s island for seven years, I could not bring myself to get on that boat. After all, I ride the ferry and go into the heart of downtown every day for work… do I really want to do it on the weekends too? Do I really want to go and fight up with the hordes of rabid shoppers, drown in my own sweat walking in the streets, and dodge the masses of Phillipino domestic workers who clog every shaded area available with their makeshift picnics? Doesn’t sound like a very relaxing Sunday to me.

But, laziness does not always reign supreme, and all was not lost. Deciding to stay on the island does not mean deciding to just stay home and veg all day on the couch. In fact, quite the opposite. Anybody who knows me knows that I love bush, and I don’t mean the bad kind.So luckily for me, Lantau is a hiker’s dream come true because just a few steps from my apartment are a number of hiking trails that lead to the Lantau look-out point, and deeper into the mountains.

"Hungry Henry" greets you at the start of the trail

I headed up the trail to the look-out point, but unfortunately it was a very cloudy day and the view of the rest of Hong Kong was a bit dark and gloomy. But it’s great weather for walking because it’s not blazing sun. The nickname for Discovery Bay — DB — is ‘Dogs and Babies’, and there sure were a lot of people hiking around with their kids and pooches. But they are very careful about cleaning up their dog-doo! Thank goodness.

At the DB look out point

Up at the top of one of the paths I walked up to the reservoir, which looked like a very nice, calm lake. There were even fish in there! But I won’t tell my significant other because one morning I will wake up at 5 am and he’ll be up there with a fishing pole in his hand.

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I really wanted to head up into the hills and climb to the top of the trails, but I thought that since I was alone maybe it was not sure a good idea. Sure, there are lots of people walking and jogging up here, but I figured better safe than sorry. But I then discovered many waterfalls and rock pools, and one of these fine days I just might go and take a plunge! After all, the mountain water has GOT to be cleaner than the filthy water in the sea.

Anyways, after my 2-hour bush walk, I was drenched with sweat, but extremely relaxed. It was time to head home, take a shower, and sit on my balcony and have an ice cold gin and tonic with a wedge of lime. This is what Sundays were made for.

Maybe getting waylaid on this island isn’t so bad after all………

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