Having made a new friend who also happens to be visiting Hong Kong along with the fact that we both want to see the same sights (what are the chances), we made plans to meet up and get this sightseeing idea going! This awesome person is Francis Asprec! After an sms or many, we finally organised to meet up in Central and go from there. Where would we go that day? Hmmm… The weather started off looking glum but as the meeting time crept upon us, so too did the sun creep out of hiding. Thus we decided on the Big Buddha statue on Lantau Island.
Excited, we clambered onto the MTR destined for Lantau Island and looking out the windows at it’s countryside was amazing. It really had a tropical feel to it. Soon we arrived at our destination and then the grumbling began. Food! Foood! FOOOD! our tummies cried out. Supposedly it was time for lunch and so we headed off to the mega Asian food court to silence those grumblings that were already disturbing the fun-filled day! After having stuffed our faces, we made our way to the transportation area to get to the Big Buddha Statue. The cable car ride had way too many people standing in queue, so we opted for the bus ride up. The ride was more thrilling than anticipated as the bus clambered up and down the steep hills on very narrow roads that contained other buses trying to commute tourists to and from the Big Buddha Statue.
Finally at the top, we offloaded ourselves from the bus and gazed around. The big Buddha statue captured our eyes and we eagerly started towards it. Along the way we came across some statues where each statued man had one of the 12 zodiac symbols carved into their helmets. This wasn’t apparent at first glance as we were just so excited about being near to the big Buddha and as such it only came to our realization when we looked a second time after our examination of the Buddha statue. From the corner of my eye, I espied a market that was selling colourful windmills. These windmills could be seen everywhere upon my arrival in Hong Kong and the build up to the New Year. As such, I decided that without a doubt, I had to get myself one too!
With my new possession in tow, we approached the Big Buddha, from the bottom of the loads of stairs reaching up towards the statue. OMW! Asia and their stairs!!! Mustering all my energy reserves and enthusiasm, we tackled the stairs and soon we were standing below the awing gaze of the statue. Looking up into that face, a wave of serenity came over me. I took deep inhaled breaths and released tension on the breath of my exhales. Amazing how things seem less overwhelming when you take the time to calm your thoughts and relax your mind and just embrace the now moment. It may sound cliche, but try it before you completely reject it.
After taking in our fill of the Buddha, we went down the stairs to the temple. Had some fun beating a large drum that brought child-like glee and giggles from both of us. And eventually after half an hour more, we made our way back to the bus, down the rickety road, onto the MTR and back to the comfort of our homes ready to face a new day of adventure…. though after some more good food and good rest!