Saturday, April 03, 2010

A Little Trouble Getting into Big China

William Gibson was right: the sky over Hong Kong is the colour of a TV turned to a dead channel.

Half blind and held up in Hong Kong last night. Our Cathay flight from Vancouver to HK yesterday was delayed by more than an hour, and by the time we got into HK, we couldn't make our connecting flight to Beijing on China Air. Seems a 2-hour layover isn't enough buffer room when your initial flight is an hour overdue and the airline for the next flight closes its boarding gate 40 minutes before their plane is scheduled to leave. Lumbering down the enclosed overhead catwalk connecting the airport with the Regal Aiport Hotel where Cathay was putting us up, I stopped and peered out at the night sky. Gibson was full-on.

The hotel itself gave me another flashback to the first Superman movie: lots of huge, white wannabe-crystal-looking columns in the lobby atrium made it feel a lot like it was trying to be Krypton or the Fortress of Solitude. With the memory of the Olympic cauldron back home still fresh, I found myself again inflicting a bad Marlon Brando impression on my wife:
Be reasonable, Jor-El!
My friend [gotta work the jowels to really get Brando], I have never been otherwise.

This morning, I awoke with the song The Worst Day Since Yesterday running through my mind. (Heard that one when I stumbled past the opening sequence of an episode of Star Gate Universe sometime in the past week. Great song! Had to download it immediately.) Not the best omen for the trek today to Beijing, to link up late with our tour group and maybe salvage a little of today's lost sightseeing.

More from Captain Cyclops' Geeky Travel Log as it happens.
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