I concluded my days in Hong Kong by getting on a train and heading back to mainland China. I was extremely satisfied by Hong Kong. Without being too much of a dick about it, Hong Kong is what China could be if Mao hadn’t taken over and installed his regime of idiocy and walked the country back into the 19th century. Hong Kong has many of the traditional characteristics of Chinese culture, but lacks people spitting in the streets, urinating and defecating everywhere, and shoving aside old ladies so that they can be the first person on the bus.
Safe to say I was greatly impressed by my trip Hong Kong. People where so much kinder everywhere I went there. But I failed to notice something about people in Hong Kong that should have been immediately obvious. It should have dawned on me at the train station in Hong Kong, where everyone was a little more shove-y than I had previously noticed in my days at Hong Kong. One group of ladies even made a big ceremony of cutting in front of people in lines. There was even a nice bit of completly unnecessary security theater to even get on the train.
Having passed security and entered the boarding lounge area, I came to find that there were a pair completly non-nonsensical lines to board the train. No one knew which line was the line to board the train, or why the differentiation was happening. You could tell this was a transition zone between Hong Kong and mainland China because in China no one forms any lines whatsoever.
But as I sat down on the train things seemed to normalize. People came onto the train, took their seats, and didn’t comment too much about it. There was a loud group of teenagers, each burdened with a a bag full of video gaming gear, but they too simmered down quickly when each pulled out an expensive MSI laptop and started gaming.
Yes, the train back to Guangzhou was looking like it was going to be a nice calming trip back to China.
But as if by magic, when we began to approach the border of Hong Kong with the Chinese city of Shenzen, I could make out a distant rumbling quickly approaching. Forces unknown were awakening the inner ruckus in all the Chinese passengers, and compelling them to start speaking increasingly loudly as the crossed over the magical border. By the time we had pulled up to Shenzen station, a few min after the border, the train was sheer anarchistic cacophony, with everyone on the train speaking over each as if looking to win a competition of sorts.
I miss Hong Kong deeply.