Shortly after 10am this morning, I dropped Su off around an MTR exit at Mei Foo so that she could take the Tuen Ma Line to Yuen Long from where she would catch a taxi to Tai Tong Shan Road to join her photography tutor on an outing with more students to the Sweet Gum Woods to take photos of the red leaves. The leaves on these trees, not to be mistaken with maple leaves, change color to different shades of yellow, orange and red around this time particularly when there is an abrupt fall in temperature, and which would present an excellent opportunity for photo outings. Su had joined a six-week class run by a Mr Tony Ho whom we had met in April 2011 on a trip to Korea to take pictures of the cherry blossoms, which is another story which you can read more about on page 324 of my autobiography if you are interested. Her primary motivation for going on the course is to learn more on where the scenic sites in Hong Kong are, rather than to brush up on her photo taking skills. Today is the first outing. To plan for the trip, Su had made me do a recce with her last week on my electric car, arguing that it won’t cost much and is environmentally friendly. We had a dry run indeed exactly a week ago on a sunny day. We were lucky to find a proper parking space before mid-day, took some pictures, walked the planned scenic route which is short and pleasant, but ended up doing the walk to the Reservoir Islands Viewpoint (commonly known in Cantonese as the Thousand Islands Viewing Platform) and back or around 10 km in all, which is part of Stage Ten of the Trailwalker, but that would be yet another story.
The recce went well indeed, the GPS on her iPhone having worked perfectly; and I was to do a repeat performance with her this morning, which I had agreed. We got up before 7 am, had breakfast, put on warm clothes and packed extra stuff, including a camera, water and spare clothes, and set off at 8:50 am. The GPS began okay and we were on our way to Yuen Long on Route 9, but then it stopped working, by which time I had already done over 30 km. Now, the land trip through the toll road with Tai Lam Tunnel from Mei Foo should take less than 25 minutes for the 27 km, which we had tried last week. The longer trip through New Territories Circular Road without tolls, which we also tried last week, would be around 37 km and would take longer. Su reckoned that her iPhone was out of data and hence couldn’t connect to the GPS. We decided to exit to Shek Kong before taking Route 9 back to Kowloon and Mei Foo. I had clocked in 66 km when I dropped her off.
Su met up with her tutor and others on the outing and I would leave her to describe her sojourn on her blogs. Such is how Su would operate in general and I have grown accustomed to her ways, after more than 12 years, so that nothing would surprise me. Let me cite some more examples from this week alone.
Last Thursday, she decided to replenish the wine glasses that Peter Kwan had left us, half of which had been broken. We found a shop very close to Sheung Wan MTR that sold those and bought six, because they came in six in a box. Afterwards, we had our favourite comfort food, congee and noodles, from a shop nearby. The shop bought memories: years ago, when I had yet to meet Su and was living by myself and nursing a bad cold in Goldwin Heights, my good friend Alex Kwan – who had since passed away – had bought food there and taken them to my bedside. Again, that would be another story. After lunch, Su suggested we went to Wing On to look at the wine cabinets. Wing On was nearby. We found one that can hold 140 bottles, which apparently was the last one available, as confirmed by the Floor Supervisor, who then gave us more details on delivery, installation and other logistics. We would be buying it as a display item and hence at a discount. Back home, we checked the measurements and Su asked me to make an immediate trip back to Wing On to buy the thing, for it would only cost me $2 each way on MTR. I was somewhat tired out by then and demanded my cat nap, which was granted and which I duly took. Taking advantage of the location of our dinner appointment in the evening, we took the MTR to Wing On, placed the order and paid, and took MTR back to Lai Chi Kok for the restaurant at D2 Place. Su had bought quite a few bottles of good reds – may be five dozen – not counting the two dozen of her staple Veuve Clicquot which she bought from AMC because the price was right, and two additional dozens of Italian reds she ordered at the dinner at D2 Place through impulse, which had yet to be delivered. On Monday, Wing On called to advise that a new shipment had arrived such that they would deliver us a new cabinet at the same price rather than the display item, albeit one or two weeks later.
Still on Monday, Su messaged me when I was just about to have lunch: She had booked both of us for the booster shots – the third jab – in the same afternoon at 3:30 pm in Sha Tin, as a consequence of which I felt I should decline the drinks I was offered at lunch, to the great amazement and disappointment of a senior brother. But after the jabs, we detoured to Kowloon Tong to pick up two dozen oysters which were so good that Su couldn’t refuse uncorking a bottle of champagne, to mark our successful third jabs.
I would sign off for now and take my cat nap, while waiting for her to turn up.