Notes From Home To Here

January 6, 2010 § Leave a comment


Before leaving, I told myself I wouldn’t cry — I’m normally a very dry-eyed person. But when my brother walked out the door to go catch the school bus, I started tearing up. And even though mother was in a terribly grouchy mood early in the morning, I couldn’t even say anything as we hugged goodbye for fear of starting to cry.

As the car pulled out of the driveway, I looked out the window and tried to hold back my tears. Maybe I just need to go somewhere and have a god cry, I thought, but couldn’t understand why I felt that way. In hindsight, I think it was because my parents were banking on me to be successful in my endeavors in Hong Kong, but I felt like such a disappointment to them. What have I ever done that was worth being proud of? Thankfully, the sadness gave way to sheer exhaustion and I slept the whole way to the airport.

Upon arriving at O’Hare, nervousness mingled with excitement. Father, who had to catch his own flight to Boston, seemed reluctant to part ways.

On the plane, I watched Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs — I was exhausted but it was one of my favorite childhood books, so I forced myself awake. It was nothing like the picture book, but I actually cried at the end of the movie when Flint’s father tells him what he had been waiting his whole life to hear.

The stars look amazing from above the clouds — it’s like being on the same level instead of billions of miles away. We flew over some mountains, which were absolutely breathtaking. I rarely get a window seat, so I spent a lot of time staring out at the landscape. [I also only went to the bathroom once because the middle-aged couple next to me spent the whole trip sleeping and barely spoke English.] The skies were mostly clear of any clouds, and I could see the jagged peaks lightly coated in a layer of mist, as if they had risen out of some fantasy novel.

When in-flight TVs are finished playing their movies, they usually show maps of the plane’s progress. Instead of showing us where we were, the maps on teh screen displayed four different angles of the plane leaving from Chicago, in case we would forget or something.

My first thought upon laying eyes on HK: It has mountains! How new and exciting!
My second impression, once I stepped into the airport, was that it smelled like China. Good to be in the motherland again, I suppose.
My third thought, as I was traveling through the terminal, was that I was happy to be in a place full of Asians again. Oh how I missed it!

I don’t think it’s possible for me to acquire an accent, and I don’t even know what to call the way people speak English here. My first instinct is “fob accent,” but these people are not fobs. I suppose it would be called a Hong Kong accent? I met a girl from Australia yesterday and it seems more likely for me to pick up her accent than an HK one.


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