My first impression is: I like Taiwan better, by a lifetime.
I feel guilty for feeling this way, and it hasn't even been 24 hours, so really, don't listen to me. I think more than a reflection of the quality of Hong Kong, my first impression is more a testament of my really substantial love for Taiwan.
Here's what I don't like about Hong Kong: the locals give off a very rude, pretentious and unpleasant vibe, the service is poor at my hotel and almost every restaurant I've been to, they just don't give a sht about you and it takes ages to get service people's attention and when they are listening to your request they are not engaged and make you feel like you're burdening them (real WTF) + they don't understand most basic English like I was told they would, they also don't understand mandarin, so..., it's a real GD struggle for me not knowing a lick of Canto. Generally there is just not a lot to see or do here, but shop and look at the skyline, which by the way is pretty amazing.
Nice segue into what I do like about Hong Kong: diversity in people. One of the first signs I saw at the airport read: "Hong Kong, Asia's World City." So true. I have seen/observed HK locals, Brits, Aussies, Argentinians, China Chinese, Taiwanese, Americans, Indians all in a day.
I'm living on the HK Island side and, this is where most of the ex-pats live and chill, so says Nick, my HS friend and host for the weekend.
So far, the food has been good. I went to a traditional canto place for an afternoon bite and had a bowl of fried rice and a plate of roasted pork which was delicious, but I didn't eat most of the fatty part of the pork, which I think was smart of me, but I wasn't sure if the restaurant owners, servers, locals eating around me maybe thought I was being indignant, or weird, because probably the best part of the pork is the fat, chewy part, am I right?
Dinner was at this more buttoned up place in the IFC building with a few finance folks (friends, lots of f's) and we just had a bunch of small portion canto dishes, all satisfying.
Afterwards, we went to the Armani bar (everything in this building is Armani - the clothing company). We sat outside on this nice terrace, surrounded by high rises.. We talked a lot of finance. I met a guy who knew the guy (in fact once worked with him) at UBS who F'd up 2 bil. This guy I met pretty surely lost his hard-earned bonus as a result of this F up. I learned that buck means mil and yard means bil, and that the world's largest banks, are just generally playgrounds for traders. I think the world of finance is really fun to get a glimpse of, it's fun to date a guy in it, or have friends in it, but I don't think I'd ever be in it (well, also not smart enough) or marry someone in it. Just FYi in case you were wondering my position on this. speaking of position, I asked Nick and other finance guy "what was that UBS F'up's position?" meaning to ask what his job title was, but they thought i meant position on the trade he lost 2 bil on and were impressed with my vocab. How wrong they were about me.