Sunday, 14 October 2012

Checking-in From Zhuhai

Howdy loyal minions!  Sorry about the lack of a post yesterday, but we didn't get in to our hotel until late, and I was in no frame of mind to be writing.  Yesterday was a day dedicated entirely to travel and illness unfortunately, and the camera didn't even come out of it's protective Pelican case in my carry-on.  That marks the first day this trip that my camera hasn't got any exercise.  I'll have to take it for a walk today...

We had a 9:45 flight from Shanghai to Hong Kong yesterday, and Euphy's Uncle assured us that Shanghai's airport wouldn't be busy and the recommended three hours wouldn't be necessary, so we were able to sleep in a bit.  Got to the airport by 8:00, which is MUCH later than I would normally show up for a flight, but the place was very quiet and we had no trouble checking in and getting through security.

Things went noticeably downhill from there I'm afraid.  Our use of Tylenol Cold seems to be making us somewhat immune to it's effects, and it's becoming less and less potent every time we use it.  We were both feeling crappier by the minute unfortunately.  We got on the plane as scheduled, but then the pilot came on and told us that they couldn't take off at 9:45 because if they did there would be nowhere in Hong Kong for us to land as it was just too busy.  So we sat at the gate for an hour and a half.  They were at least kind enough to turn on the entertainment system so I could watch a bit of TV.  I'm sure we've all had worse things in life than a 1.5 hour delay at an airport, but the unfortunate side effect of that delay was that we just narrowly missed the 2:00 ferry to Zhuhai, and had to wait around Hong Kong's airport for three hours to catch the next one.  I was going to make a blog post at that point but the WiFi there seemed to cut out every 2-3 minutes.

On our way to Beijing we had a transfer in Hong Kong, and we spent the bulk of it in the Priority Pass lounge, so I didn't see a lot of the airport, but in walking from the lounge to our gate it seemed really nice.  Actually, it seemed like a GIANT shopping mall.  The walk from the lounge to the gate took about twenty minutes and was lined with stores the whole way.  So, that being my impression of the airport I wasn't too worried about killing a few hours there.  Well it turns our arrival gate from Shanghai was in some little ghetto corner of the airport with a convenience store and crappy little noodle restaurant.  You could go through immigration into Hong Kong, or catch a ferry from there, that's about it, so I don't think it was built with the intention that people would be spending any great deal of time there.  At that point we were both really feeling like crap, so it was a long wait.

When we got on the ferry though it was pretty nice.  It only took about an hour to get into Zhuhai, and it was a very smooth ride.  Unfortunately the haze that seemed so omnipresent when we first arrived in Beijing was thick and heavy in the Hong Kong and Zhuhai areas.  The vague silhouettes of the surrounding landscape suggested that I could have got some beautiful shots of the area on a clear day.  Euphy assures me that a clear day in Hong Kong is a thing of myth though.

So we got into Zhuhai at 6:00 instead of the intended 3:00 which meant that instead of heading to the hotel for a shower and a change of clothes it was straight off to a restaurant where Euphy's Dad had assembled her entire extended family for a huge banquet to welcome us.  It was a hell of a spread, but unfortunately I just wasn't into eating as the combo of a day's travelling and an increasingly nasty head cold had left me pretty beat down.  Kind of a bummer state to be in when meeting the whole family.

Fortunately we were able to retire to the hotel right after that.  Euphy's Dad made all the arrangements for us here in Zhuhai, and he's got a friend who hooked us up with a swanky hotel room for cheap.  I'll post pictures later, but yeah, we're staying pretty comfortably here.  A good night's sleep was very helpful, and while this cold is still very much with me, I'm feeling a lot better than yesterday.  Here's hoping that it stays mellow today and that another good night's sleep can finally get me back to 100%.  At this point I'm not even sure what the itinerary is for the day, so I'm going to go get dressed and see what the day holds for me in terms of adventure.

I'll talk to you all later!


Jabbles said...

I like to see many regions on a trip, but the mid trip travel days do feel like a waste.

Colin Young said...

Yeah, they can be a drag sometimes. Honestly if things had gone according to plan this one wouldn't have been bad at all. Just a couple hours on a plane and an hour on the ferry. Not a big deal, but it was just unfortunate.