The sky was gloomy this morning, but at least it wasn’t raining again. The typhoon warning had also passed and so the wind had dropped accordingly.
After I dragged myself out of bed, I took a hugely long shower. My feet were red and sore from the amount of walking I’d done over the last few days and my dodgy knee had stiffened as well. This is usually a sign that it would start playing up soon, which is something I really didn’t want considering I’d be facing two long haul flight later that evening.
I only had the one last thing that I really wanted to see before I left, and that was to go to Sky100 the observation deck of the ICC skyscraper, the tallest building in Hong Kong and the 4th tallest in the world.
Wanting to give my feet and knee a rest, I took a taxi there which was a good plan.
Upon paying for my ticket I was ushered into an elevator that sped me up to the 100th floor. Like when I visited the Rockefeller Centre in New York I got lucky because there were hardly any people there. So I had the luxury of looking out over Hong Kong at my leisure and trying to spot all the places I’d visited over the last nine days.
I couldn’t say why, but I adore looking down on the landscape from above. From cable-cars, airplanes to just good old-fashioned viewing points there is just something cool in seeing what normally towers above below you. I’d been able to do a lot of that on this trip. From skyscrapers in Hong Kong and Shenzhen, from a tower in Macau as well as the cable cars at Lantau and Ocean Park, and then of course there is that breathtaking view from The Peak.
I headed to the IFC mall again with the intention of getting lunch. However as I stood on the metro I could feel my knee growing more painful. I remembered seeing a cinema not far from the Apple Store and thought it would be good to watch a film. Even if I couldn’t understand it, I’d be off my feet for a couple of hours.
As it happened the next showing was Jonny English Returns starring Rowen Atkinson – or to everyone else that that was in the queue Mr. Bean.
Watching a film in a foreign country is an unusual experience. Particularly watching a comedy. When there were physical jokes, we would often laugh at different things. Something that I didn’t really register would provoke gales of laughter from the locals. Whereas some things I laughed at barely raised a titter.
The verbal jokes were the complete inverse of the previous day, (when I would have to wait for a translation of a joke that people were already laughing at before getting the joke) I would be laughing a few seconds before most other people as they needed to read the translation on screen
The best part of the entire movie watching experience was when Jonny English spoke some Cantonese. The entire cinema absolutely erupted with laughter at his deliberate mispronunciations, and if the English translations in the subtitles were correct I can see why as it just have been surreal to them.
The film was an enjoyable way to kill a couple of hours, but my knee was still causing concern and I only had a couple of hours left before I would need to be at the hotel for my bus to the airport. I decided that I’d head back a little early and stop off for food along the way.
Just outside my Metro stop was a chemist with a giant illuminated foot outside advertising foot massages. I’d seen it all week and had laughed at the it, but this time as I was passing I thought ‘well why not’. So it was that a few minutes later I was sat in an armchair and my feet in boiling water with scented oils poured in.
I then spent the next 90 minutes having every inch of my feet and calf muscles poked, rubbed, stretched, kneaded and pulled. At the start far from being relaxing it was a form of torture as my muscles resisted this continued assault. But soon the knots were worked out and I started to relax and enjoy it.
In some ways the experience was surreal. We shared no common language, and despite my being very content to just sit back and receive a little pampering before my flight, the lady thought that I’d like to hear something in my own language and so turned on a small TV flipping through stations looking for something in English. What she eventually found was a kids cartoon.
If you had told me that my last couple of hours in Hong Kong would be spent having my feet rubbed as Dora the Explorer played on TV; I’ve have said you were nuts.
After she had finished my feet felt like they belonged to someone else. All the aches that had been there this morning were gone, and my calf muscles felt loose. My knee was still sore, but my feet felt so good that I didn’t really care.
I paid and then walked the short journey to my hotel. Where I had just enough time to have a shower before checking out and boarding the bus to the airport.