The rest of our time in Hong Kong was excellent. I visited the Hong Kong Mary Kay Headquarters and met a few directors. The biggest difference in the Mary Kay line in Asia is the skin bleaching products. In America, so many people work hard to tan and darken their skin tone. Over here, the lighter, the better. Guess it’s good I’m so pale!
We visited the town of Stanley, further South of Lynne’s home. Great shopping and bargaining. Also found a silver shop that had some fun things. We ended the day with liquid refreshment at the American Club’s downtown Center – high up in one of the buildings. Very elegant and a world-class view of the city. We took the ferry over to Kowloon and had the BEST Chinese food (remember – no rice and no fortune cookies): green beans with pork, de-boned lamb ribs, spicy shrimp (best thing ever) and a few other dishes. While there, the skyline came alive with the buildings lit up – lots of neon – and a few buildings had lights that moved in patterns. THEN, the laser light show started. Green lines of light shooting off the tops of several buildings. On some of the harbor boats there is music synchronized to the light show. FABulous!
Our last day in Hong Kong was packing, getting to the airport and getting through immigration. After a 3 hour flight we landed in Beijing. As the plane was descending, Mike and I were scouring the landscape: highways and fields, obvious. The small collectives were different as well as some other structures we never did figure out!
Dr. Stephen Cheng, Dean of the College of Polymer Sciences met us at the airport with a driver. Good thing! The airport has 3 terminals – all so huge: the number of gates, shops and luggage carousels. And then there was the parking garage. Row after row; level after level. Easy to be confused and get lost! Our driver was excellent and knew how to maneuver around the long lines of traffic. Beijing has several ‘ring roads’ circling the city center. It makes Houston, TX look like it has no traffic issues!
We are staying in a lovely Crowne Plaza hotel with every amenity available. Last night was our first banquet. It was held in a private room with billowing gauzy drapes that were dark brown and shot through with gold. The table for 12 had a huge glass lazy-susan in the middle. Dish after dish of wonderful food was served: spicy tofu, Lima beans, scallops, oysters, fish, beef, cucumbers. All of the food was prepared with different sauces and served with elaborate presentation. You would have been proud that I only dropped food once with my chopsticks!
Beijing University vice President Wang Gui was our host. The other guests were affiliated with the university as well. Another American guest from Findley, OH was there; he’s doing a joint research project with one of the professors. We have made some great new friends. And in the words of the Westfield Review (my dad’s hometown defunct newspaper): a good time was had by all!