Friday, January 6, 2012

The Next Family Adventure

Doug’s stint here in Hong Kong is officially over near the end of January (ish). He has a few more things to do over the next few weeks until work in Hong Kong comes to a virtual stand-still for the Chinese New Year. So really, he’s done January 20th. My Fulbright in Shanghai doesn’t start until well after that. I think the semester begins at the end of February, but my official start date is February 12th, when I have an orientation in Xiamen. That means we have several weeks to kill between gigs.

Having been here the entire semester, there’s no way we’re leaving Hong Kong without experiencing the New Year, which is on the 23rd. With those parameters in mind (here until at least the 24th, Xiamen by the 12th), we’ve now managed to plot our next adventure. On January 27th, we’ll be leaving to spend a week in Hawaii. We hadn’t really planned on returning stateside this year, but for a variety of reasons, we’re going to meet my folks and my brother for a week of fun in Maui. Despite the fact that we leave at 10:00 am on Friday from Hong Kong and fly for 10+ hours, we manage to land in Maui at 7:00 am on Friday due to the wonders of the International Date Line.

Then, since our return flight connected through Tokyo, we decided to get off the plane and spend some time there. At first, we had planned on only doing a couple of nights, but through the wonder of the internet, we’ve managed to locate a 2 bedroom/3 bed apartment with a kitchen in a great location in Tokyo for a really cheap price. Given that we won’t have an apartment in Hong Kong at that point, we figure why not spend the time in Tokyo, so we’ll be there for 6 nights. Now, this will make packing somewhat of a challenge; we’ll need summer clothes for Hawaii and winter clothes for Tokyo. But we’ll figure it out somehow (my new motto)!

We’ll return to Hong Kong for a few nights to collect the rest of our belongings (we’re hoping to either store them somewhere here on campus or with one of the other Fulbrighters), then we’ll head to Xiamen for our first journey into mainland China. I have four days full of meetings; Doug and the boys, on the other hand, get to partake in four days of sightseeing and exploring, graciously organized by the Fulbright program. I’m hoping I can manage to sneak out a bit with them.

So far, we’ve got most of our flights booked and lodgings arranged in Maui, Tokyo and Xiamen. Our passports are en route to DC, so we can get China visas (LONG story, but the bottom line is that we couldn’t get the visas we needed from here in Hong Kong, so we had to FedEx our passports back home!). While we’re enjoying our last few weeks here in Hong Kong, now that our plans are settled, we’re really looking forward to some new adventures. Being essentially homeless for over 3 weeks (from the 27th of January until the 17th of February, we’ll be living in at least 4 different locations!) and moving back and forth across the international date line should be an interesting challenge, but it’s a great opportunity for us to explore some more this part of the world. So excited!


  1. You guys live such a boring life. You really need to get out a bit more you know!

  2. So excited for you guys!! This is such a great experience for all of you. We miss you but love reading along on your journey!

  3. WOW!! What an exciting agenda!! Sounds like it will be CRAZY-FUN!!! Hope all goes well for you!!

  4. We can't wait to see you in Hawaii and show the boys a place we love and humpback whales, too!
    Judy and Dad