Yesterday had to be, what might well be, one of the most memorable days of my life.
I have been in Hong Kong now for 21 days. Working on the information architecture for this new project, for my company back in Bangalore, India.
Well, 21 days are a long time to be — in what seems to be an alien territory — away from your friends and friendly food. But that is another story. Today I am here to talk about what happened yesterday!
There was this place I had heard about… some kind of a peak. I always thought, “It’s funny how nobody seems to remember the name of the peak”. Yesterday I found the answer to this question. The peak was called “The Peak”. How very creative one might say.
And then they said there was this neat tram ride that took you up the 552 metre Peak (That’s a whopping 1,816 feet!). The ride was everything the tourist brochures said, and more!
Ah! You want to know the name of the Tram? Well, it is called … uhh… The Peak Tram. Shocked? You shouldn’t be. Looks like the local populace here has a fixed way (You might want to call it ‘limited’) of naming things – be it trams, streets or buildings.
Take for instance there is this huge shopping-cum-entertainment arcade on top of the Peak, which is called — hold on to your chair — the Peak Tower. Most of the buildings in Hong Kong are called Towers, be it Immigration Tower, Wan Chai Tower, Revenue Tower, Administration Tower, and so on. Of course, then there are these buildings that are called Centers, say Caroline Center, Admiralty Center, etc.
Anyway let me come back to yesterday. I travelled up the Peak, using the words from the tourist brochure, in “the funicular railway whose sturdy carriages seem to assume near-perpendicular angles as they giddily (give me a break!) whisk passengers up the 552-metre ascent”. Seriously this is one experience that cannot be described in words. It can only be felt and experienced — a must-see, if there was ever one!
Well, and what was awaiting me on top of the Peak? Surprise, surprise! As I got off the Tram, and looked around the Peak Tower, I saw Jackie Chan! Being an ardent fan of this action super-star right from my pre-teens, I rushed towards him, for a photo-op. And that was when I was wonder-struck!
For what followed, was a dream-come-true… It was as if I had waved my invisible magic wand and made my wildest dream come true! Here were most of my idols – my role models – all gathered in one place… and it sure looked like they were all there just for me!
And there I was standing dumb-struck with my mouth gaping, looking as though a 10,000 volt lightning bolt had hit me right were I stood! Well, what would you do, if you see Eddie Murphy, Michael Jackson, Brian Lara, Macaulay Culkin, Pierce Brosnan, and Jon Bon Jovi standing there right in front of you? See?… That’s exactly what I did! Stood there gaping for a minute!
And after that I rushed to mingle with the crowd that was gathering around these celebs, looking for a photo-opportunity. And as I was looking around, I thought most of my real and reel-life idols are here. If only David Copperfield was here too (Remember I am a magician?) I must have said it real loud or something, for right there, above me, floating around in the air was David himself!
Well, by now you must be thinking “Hey! I knew something was wrong with this guy! He is getting delirious by being in Hong Kong for such a long time”. Some of my friends, would be jumping with joy, proclaiming “Yippee! I knew it! I always said Nakul was mad. Now people will believe me”!
Before you jump to conclusions (that is, if you are still reading this marathon piece), let me share a secret with you. I also had pictures taken with some of the greatest legends of our times, like Charles Spencer Chaplin (You’ve heard of Charlie Chaplin?), Alfred Hitchcock, and of course our very own Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (The Mahatma, if you please).
Aaah! Now you are smelling something fishy? Or are you sure that I have lost it all? Well whatever you call it pal, I really enjoyed myself at Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum. That one hour I spent in that magical world, transformed by wildest dream to reality. It was truly inspirational.
I am sure some of the photographs I now have with my role-models – including the one and only Bruce Lee – will go a long way in actually inspiring me to achieve my dreams, both for myself and my India.
Hello! Wakey Wakey! The write-up ends here.