My body arched as a glass hit the floor and liquid spattered across my back. I’d just finished a bowl of furnace-hot, red-speckled mapo doufu and the feeling was initially refreshing.
Then I heard slurred words of apology mumbled from behind me. The droopy-eyed Hong Kong Seven’s rugby fan had knocked over a glass. It was not water, but red wine that coated my back.
“I’mmmmm ……. reeeeeeaaaaaallllllyyyy sooooorrrrryyyyy. It’ssssss “Greeeeeeeaaaatttttt Waaaaaalllllll”……. so think about hoooooowwwwww haaaarrrd it is to driiiink.”
No use talking to someone quite that plastered, I turned back to my husband and visiting mom. The waitress rushed over some tissues and they helped me dab up the wine.
Leaving the restaurant, I made the odd decision to lead us through Lan Kwai Fong (LKF): the exact area that would be the night’s main destination for many of the over-indulging Seven’s fans. Rounding the corner, this is a slice of what we saw (shake your screen to help visualize the costumed revelers in constant motion):
It was the spitting image of the last half of any “Harlem Shake” video!
We wandered through gawking with delight at the (literally) intoxicating atmosphere. At only 9 pm, the many bar patrons already filled the street. Metal police barricades were set up to expedite officer passage as the night wore on. I sympathized with the cops who would soon be dealing with the aftermath of the cheap trays of rainbow-colored, syringe-type vodka shots being sold; the evening could only end with the street awash in Jell-O hued vomit.
Just out of LKF, I suggested we wander to the pedestrian bridge near the IFC and look at the city lights. Arriving, we gazed back at a starkly black cityscape. We had chosen to take in the lights in the middle of “Earth Hour,” the yearly period during which many city buildings turn off their non-essential lights.
Why not hop on the Star Ferry and watch the lights get switched back on at 9:30? We wandered down the pier and while waiting for the next ferry, studied this fitting public service announcement about being an energy saver:
The ferry docked and we walked down the ramp to board. Setting out across Victoria Harbor we realized that most of the lights had been turned on while we stood in the ferry terminal bathed in fluorescent lighting.
Nothing was quite right that night, but somehow it turned into a perfectly amusing evening out in Hong Kong.