October 21, 2006

Hong KongSouth AfricaAt 3 am we were awoken by a clap of thunder, and we could hear the rain pouring down. But we didn’t get up until after 7 am, because we don’t need to be at the airport until around 10 am. Breakfast was the other half of the fruit salad from last night’s dinner. We went through the food we had left: some rice and vegetables, which we left at the hostel. Some margarine that has melted and recongealed several times, which we threw away. Two buns, two apples, and a bag of chewy mints, which we kept as snack food for the airport.

Finally we packed our packs for the last time. Paul’s was absurdly tall, but the giraffe’s horns are well padded so it should survive. Rosemary’s was tightly packed, too, and our day packs had a lot of random stuff in them.

About 9 am we decided we were ready to leave for the airport. We said our goodbyes to Bruce and Morris, then backed out of the security gate and away we went. We probably didn’t follow the directions to the airport totally correctly, but we are getting better at being lost, so we had no problem getting to the airport. We turned in our trusty rental car, went through immigration, and carried our packs up to the departure area.

We had three hours until flight time, so we made the rounds of all the stores looking for last-minute souvenirs. We bought some drinks, then we bought a hand-painted teapot with the rest of our Rands plus a credit card. So we were broke and ready to go. The plane left on time, except that because of Johannesburg’s altitude, it had to have its engines warmed up for an extra ten minutes before taking off. But apart from that the flight was as usual; Rosemary watched a couple of movies and Paul read his book, and we arrived on time in Hong Kong at 8 am (2 am South Africa time, 5 pm yesterday Vancouver time).

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