Big Buddha and Other Delights

Today began with me going to the ferry first thing to meet FC at his flat. Since I didn’t want to be too late, I skipped breakfast at the hotel and opted for a raisin bun that I picked up at the ferry terminal.
I successfully made it up to the flat by myself, and, feeling like a college student, I also brought along my laundry. It seems what goes around comes around. My father used to go to FC’s mother’s house when he was in college. I’m fairly certain he’d take his laundry, and she would feed him.
Anyway, laundry handled, we headed out to see the Big Buddha. This is a very big Buddha. It’s on Lantau Island, the biggest island in Hong Kong, and the island where my cousins live. We had to take two different busses, and it was a fairly long trip. And entirely worth it.
The Buddha is at a monastery and temple. Tourists are welcome, but most of the people appeared to be there for a religious pilgrimage.
Upon entering the complex, we walked along a promenade lined with statues of the twelve Divine Generals. Each is in charge of a certain time of the day and each represents a sing of the 12-year calendar cycle. I found the tiger General (I was born in a tiger year) and he is in charge of 3-5 am – hours when I particularly want to be asleep.
There are beautiful gates and temples and there is a place for the faithful to burn incense and offer prayers, but the highlight is the Buddha, which sits atop a peak. It is magnificent. It was built in 1992, and FC noted that the greenery has really increased since he was last there.
There are over 200 steps to climb, but worth it. Inside, beneath the actual statue, is a gallery and also a place where people leave offerings. There is also a massive bell
We purchased access to the entire gallery and also for the vegetarian lunch. There is a restaurant where the meal is served family style. We had quite a large lunch, very good food, for very little money.
In the courtyard where the incense is burning, there are benches to sit. People may bring their own food, but only vegetarian food is allowed there.
After visiting the complex, we headed back. We rested up a bit, then headed to the Admiralty section of Hong Kong Island for dinner and a movie with the whole family.
On the ferry, we saw schools of small diver fish jumping out of the water! I have no idea what these fish are.
We had a lovely Italian meal, and then went to see “How to Train Your Dragon 2”. When we got back to the flat we skyped with Twenty-one-year-old.
Now it’s time for bed.
That’s my mite.


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