Time clicked to 4 in the morning. In the same time more flights arrived making the airport get busier as the sunrise would be coming. We decided to leave the lounge to see hongkong officially. Enggar was tasked to arrange the itinerary. He was good in doing research about what to do in HK at budget. He got all written in papers the itinerary and the budget. He got that from one of ‘senior’ member of INDOBACKPACKER. And everybody was into him but me.
While we were waiting for the sunrise inside, i browsed all about hongkong. That was really unplanned. Okay i got the result what to do at least at that day, i decided to leave the group. I decided to go to macau for my very first day trip, but they didn’t. I was not into the perfect well-planned itinerary. I was thinking that i would like to explore what i did want to do without following others. I told them that i would go separately with them and meet with them after. They asked me to join them, and i insisted to not go.
They already booked room for them in the downtown of hongkong, and i didn’t have. They were so nice by offering me to stay with them in the same hostel so we could share the fee. I told them that i would not spend any buck for accommodation, and yeah no word could say then. It was high season in hongkong because it was about to Christmas and it was best time to travel to hongkong anyway. So i myself was afraid about my accommodation. I was thinking to be vagabond in hongkong. Eventually, i still went for my own.
We all finished the immigration easily. Indonesian doesn’t visa, neither do other nationalities (most nationalities i think). It was time for morning praying for moslem. So they all are moslem, very good ones. We asked the officer there about the praying room, we had it in upstairs (second floor) in the very corner. In here i saw how big and fancy the airport. The HKIA was amazing. I was speechless to see the vast huge airport. We could find easily the praying room in the corner of second floor next to toilet. The praying room was warm and uniquely, it was different with Indonesia had. The praying room was like a silent room for any kind of beliefs and faith and religion. This was designed to experience the silence and moment for concentrating. So in the same time moslem people prayed and i saw a girl prayed as well in that room, and she might be Christian. What did i do? I was sleeping in that room, and it was not advisable because it was considered as unacceptable to sleep there, or lie down. Yeah, the religion would not a barrier to understand each others.
It was dusk and i could see hongkong for the first time. It was beautiful, or at least i could fee how proud i was to see that. They were all done praying. Time to leave the airport to the city, they would go to their accommodation and i might go to macau. In that time, i realized that the price was so high for me. FYI, that time, Indonesian Rupiah was very weak to foreign currencies. The rate was about 1 HK$ to 1600 IDR which was super a lot for us, especially me who had saved some rupiah.
Everybody had HK$ already but me (again) *sigh. I went to foreign exchange to exchange my US$ to HK$. I saved 300 US$ with me cash. After i saw the rate was below in XE.com, i decided to exchange 100 US$ only to HK$. None exchanged the money but me, i had my HK$ already. So the next thing to do was to buy Octopus Card. So octopus card is a transportation card used by tapping to the gate and it can be used as a e-money as well in certain convenient stores across Hongkong.
So i had 765 HK$ and i was so happy because i was not penniless at least. I grabed my breakfast in 7Eleven inside the airport and a soy drink, my hot meal was instant noodle. I spent 20 HK$ for this and others didn’t do. So we sent our representatives to queue to buy the octopus card. Enggar and Fachry volunteered to be our representatives. About 20 minutes we had our Octopus card with 100 HK$ inside and 50$ deposit that we can refund (we will be cut 9HK$ for some charge i dont know).
While i were waiting for them buying the card, i sat next to Beijingian lady. She could speak English and and we had a little conversation. So this lady was in transit from the USA to meet her son studying in San Fransisco. And she was really happy to know me as the energetic adolescence. I was blushed. I said goodbye to her since we would leave the airport.
Ah finally, it was DAMN COLD outside, and 8 C was a silent killer for us, me especially. Most of them (or all of us) are not friendly enough to the cold. Some wore the coat with furry, gloves, hat, tight socks. But for catur, he just wore short pants because i had no idea.
We took several pictures before we boarded to the bus to the nearest station. Actually, there is direct train from airport to the city center and it is faster and pricier. We had no time constraint, so we chose the cheapest mode, yeah we too bus from the airport to the nearest MRT station. As we researched and Enggar’s holy itinerary said that this was the cheapest option, we opted for this method.
We waited for the bus for about 5 minutes. The bus S1 came, everybody was happy. It was empty and many passengers from airport boarded to the bus. We just tapped our octopus card and it was deducted 3.5$ that time. So our destination was Chung Tung MTR. It took about 10-15 minutes to arrive in Tung Chung MTR. We stopped and looked around the area. We didn’t found any sign of MTR, We just saw the cable car station in a huge building. Then i decided to walk against the road. I saw the crowd. And i crossed the road, and others were still in another side. I told them i saw the sign of MTR. Then they followed me. We saw the tall building, it is residential building. Hongkong is notorious for its high price for housing. Mostly hongkongers can only afford to have apartment. E took several pictures.
Finally, we were in MTR station. We didn’t need to buy ticket since we had octopus card yeayyy. We saw the map of MTR Rail. I knew where to go, so did they. We tapped to get in and we waited for the train. It was morning and working days so the train was packed and full, we had no seat, but it could be tolerated considering the train condition in Jakarta. They would stop in Jordan Station and i was in Sheung Wan station. I had to change the train and say see you again to them. And yeah, our unification ended here. I continued my journey by using MTR to Sheung Wan station to go to Macau. Once arrived, I had to tap again the card and it was deducted about 20++$ (I forget the exact fare). So the real journy of separation started officially.