Monday, November 3, 2014

Like Gazelles at the Watering Hole

So, as one loyal blog reader pointed out last week, I’ve totally dropped the Bali ball and only told you guys about two of my top five favorite moments from our trip. How dare I.

Let’s get to it! We’re now on #3 of my top five moments.

Never being on a reality show. Stick with me here.

Ok, so this is less about Bali, specifically, and more about just CB and I traveling, being partners in crime, and never making it onto any sort of reality, travel-based show where there’s any sort of compensation for finding your way through foreign lands using obvious clues.

You see, it all started when we got to the airport in Hong Kong, our last layover before hitting Indonesia. All our tired, confused bodies wanted was to get up to the second floor where all of the food courts were. We could see the Golden Arches like an oasis in the desert. Actually, I just wanted to go to the drug store I could see through the glass partitions at the end of the up escalator so I could buy a toothbrush and some toothpaste and no longer offend myself with my own breath. CB wanted a Big Mac.

So we started walking. And walking. And walking.

Until CB was like “Are you sure we should be walking this far?”

Me: “Well I haven’t seen any access to the escalators yet, have you?”
CB: “No, but this feels far.”
Me: “It does. But I think we’re close, there are a lot of people up there.”

So we kept walking. Until finally we were standing right next to a glass partition, watching people go up an escalator.


Me: “Wait….how do we get onto that escalator?”
CB: “Maybe the entrance is around the corner, let’s go.”


Me: “Oh! Maybe it’s over there, I see people getting on it over there!”
CB: “Perfect, let's go.”


Me: “Ok, we need to ask someone for help.”

Five minutes, three security guards, and a woman sitting at a desk where they take your temperature before you can get onto the plane later, and we’d been told seventeen different answers for “how do we get onto that escalator we can see but can’t access?”

CB: “This can’t be real. There has to be an easy way to get to the second floor! All of those people are up there eating and they were able to figure it out!”
Me: “So what the hell is wrong with us?”
CB: “I don’t know, but this is ridiculous.”
Me: “And we can’t even blame any of it on the language barrier. Everything’s in English.”
CB: “We’re those stupid Americans you’re always hearing about.”
Me: “I literally have no idea how to get upstairs.”

And then, like the parting of the Red Sea, I saw a bunch of people loading onto an elevator and started running towards it yelling “Let’s go! Let’s go!”

Luckily, CB was right behind me, we slid onto the glorious metal miracle just as the doors were closing, and a bunch of airport employees stared at us and shook their heads.

Me: “Going up?”
Airport Employee: “Yes, but you can’t be on this elevator.”
Me: “Why? We just want to get to the food court. And I need to brush my teeth.”
AE: “This is for employees only, sorry. We’re not going to the food court.”

And so, dejectedly, we exited our only hope at processed food and toothpaste and hung our heads in shame.

FINALLY, though, we found an employee who did more than motion vaguely to a different corner of the airport to get rid of us and explained that we had to go through security again before accessing the second floor. Which, to be fair to us, makes zero sense, but whatever. They also randomly took CB’s temperature as he was exiting the moving walkway, so we embraced the notion that things were done differently here.

However, as we ascended towards our goal, CB looked at me and said: “You know, if we were contestants on the Amazing Race, we’d be the first people kicked off.”

Me: “Oh, for sure.”
CB: “Like, I’m not even sure we’d make it to the finish line and they’d have to come find us and lead us there.”
Me: “Absolutely. We have zero instincts when outside of our comfort zone, apparently.”
CB: “But maybe it’s just because we’re so tired?”
Me: “Maybe. But I’m pretty sure that if we were gazelles, we’d be the first ones eaten at the watering hole.”
CB: “Without a doubt.”

And then we high fived and bought some burgers and fries at 9am just to complete the sterotype.

We love you, Hong Kong!


  1. Awesome! No idea how to get upstairs. ha ha ha. Would have been a lot easier if you could have just gotten on the elevator. Stupid rules. "we're not going to the food court", why did they even say that if there was no way possible for you to even be on that elevator? Thanks for the smile and the laugh today! Needed it. ---Amanda

    1. You're very welcome!!! Sorry you're having a long day....hopefully tomorrow (and/or tonight!) is better!

  2. I think they make airports as confusing as possible and then the security people sit back and watch us and laugh while we try to figure it out. Kudos to you guys for beating the system! Cant wait to hear the last 2 favorite moments.