Wednesday, December 30, 2009
What comes 'round!
In November 1999, as we were getting ready to leave Hong Kong for good, a number of friends mentioned that it was a shame that I was leaving just a few months away from obtaining Permanent Residency Status, which would have made me a defacto official citizen of Hong Kong.
I didn't care...I was America bound and remember joking, "If God ever wants me back, he'll get me another work visa." Well...10 years later, He did...and He did!
We arrived in Hong Kong after a final flurry of activities in Qingdao (which involved a lot of tears all around). School ended on Dec 18...and we boarded a plane for Hong Kong on the 19th. As we began our decent into the city Tammy and I both experienced a flood of memories and excitement. After 10 years away, we were going to live in Hong Kong again!
The airport shuttle took us to the YWCA serviced apartment where we are temporarily staying, and because we were the LAST hotel on the list, had a pleasant Saturday night drive through the city. It was as if we were getting a welcome back tour just for us. Hong Kong was lit up for Christmas and we kept staring out the big bus windows with wide grins, pinching each other and exclaiming, "We're back!"
Anyhow, some of the highlights of the last few days:
* We visited the school where I will be working and where Gabriel will be attending. Gabriel was amazed as he will be coming from a campus with a secondary student body of 18 to one of 700.
* Went to Hong Kong Disneyland which was decorated perfectly for Christmas. What a wonderful day...but I still couldn't get Gabriel to ride Space Mountain with me!
* Spent Christmas Eve with some dear friends we have known in Hong Kong for many, many years! Good food, wine, and conversation made it a special night.
* Spent Christmas Day and night with Island City Church (the church we planted many years ago) at the Noah's Ark attraction. A group of businessmen built an "ark" to the scale found in the Bible which includes conference rooms, hotel and hostel rooms, team-building activities, restaurants, a museum etc. all along the beach. Had a lot of fun with old familiar faces as well as new friends.
* Have to be careful not to gain weight having moved from a culinary desert in China, to a city where every ethnic dish from a Ruby Tuesday's Blue Cheese hamburger to a take away chicken vindaloo is available!! The diet starts soon :)
* Spent a few days house hunting. Have a couple good leads but we'll see. Having to re adjust my thinking that when a housing agent points to a bedroom that is about the size of a closet in America and remarks, "Look at all the space you'll have" that they are not making a joke.
* Had a wonderful Chinese hotpot dinner with and old friend, his family, and co-workers.
Anyhow, that is why the blogging has been sporadic lately. We've been busy...and happy!