Monday, November 26, 2012

My China Trip part 9

Hong Kong is in China, but China is very different from Hong Kong. Americans – and most people – can go to Hong Kong without a visa. Everyone needs a visa to go to China. Even people living in Hong Kong need a visa to go to China. It’s the same country, but different governments.

In Hong Kong anyone can drive anywhere at any time. In China there are curfews and you can only drive on certain days based on your car’s license plate. They let you know which day you’re allowed to drive.

In Hong Kong you can have as many children as you want. In China you can only have 1 – and mothers are encouraged to abort girls. Everybody wants to have a boy – I guess no one thinks about what will happen when there are only boys in China and no more girls.

In Hong Kong it’s perfectly legal to be gay – and apparently there are lots of lesbians! Enough to have club outings at least. They’re a friendly bunch. In China it’s illegal. Gay nude beach day in China will land you in prison. I wonder what they’ll do in 30 years when everyone under 20 is a boy.

In Hong Kong we have food from all over the world. You can get pretty much anything if you know where to look. I’ve been here almost 2 years and I’m still looking. In China it’s mostly Chinese food. It’s good & cheap, but there’s not much variety. McDonalds & KFC are all over the place, but that’s about it when it comes to something that’s not Chinese.

I always thought the people in Hong Kong were rude. They walk right into you – nobody ever moves out of anyone’s way. If I’m walking in a straight line, I have to move for people walking all over the place. If I’m carrying something, I have to move for people who aren’t carrying anything. I see people with luggage, strollers & babies moving for people who are only holding their cell phones. Everyone in Hong Kong is holding a cell phone. They are all talking on them while slamming into everyone else. It’s like none of the millions of people walking the streets knows that there’s anyone else there.

Where I come from, people don’t slam into each other. If they do, it’s an accident – and we’ll always apologize. We always step aside for people carrying heavy things. We’ll even help them sometimes. We always – always – give someone with a baby the right of way. That’s non-negotiable. You move for the handicapped & people with babies. You don’t see handicapped people in Hong Kong – I don’t know why – but there are lots of people with babies. No one seems to care.

It’s even worse in China. Hong Kong is polite compared to China. People say it’s because there are more people in China. There are – China has a lot of people – but Hong Kong is not exactly empty. China has over a billion people in the same space as the United States, but Hong Kong has 7 million people in the same amount of space as Indianapolis – and Indianapolis has less than a million people.

Everyone smokes in Hong Kong & China. I think smoking is disgusting. It’s not only bad for the smoker, it’s bad for anyone near the smoker. Too many Americans like to smoke, but at least we have places where you can get away from smoke. There are very few non-smoking places in Hong Kong. From what I saw, there are no non-smoking places in China. People in Hong Kong & China don’t think twice about blowing their smoke right in your face. They care less about poisoning others than about walking into them.

But China takes it to the next level. Everyone in China spits – all the time. I couldn’t believe it. Men & women were spitting everywhere. There are signs in elevators telling people not to spit because they do – right there in the elevator! I finally realized why Chinese people always take off their shoes when they go home – they spend all day walking in everyone’s spit! It always looks like it just rained because the sidewalk is always wet. It’s the most disgusting thing ever. You can’t get away from it – it’s everywhere. You can’t look away when you see someone spitting because wherever you look there’s someone else spitting. I don’t know what it is about Chinese people that fills their mouths with constant saliva, but they can’t stop spitting. I’m getting sick just thinking about it.

1 comment:

No hate, please. There's enough of that in the world already.