Hong Kong. Day 2: Thai and Kazakh consulates, Hong Kong Museum Of Art, Kowloon City Park, Laser Show.

Monday, February the 9th 2015.

My father and cousin suggested I try to get the visa stamp at the Thai consulate. I have preloaded maps to Thai and Kazakh consulates (the latter in case they may be able to assist with extending my passport), and headed across the Kowloon Bay to Hong Kong. The ~3 minute ferry trip costs HKD$2 if you take the lower deck, or HKD$2.4 (about CAD$0.40). Boy, are these streets confusing! Half of the walking paths are on ground, half are elevated a few meters above, and there is no apparent structure – everything is kind of built where there was space. Thanks to GPS, I got to both consulates, but only to be turned away empty-handed: because, rules, man.

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Hong Kong vacation. Day 1: Avenue of Stars, Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade.

Sunday, February the 8th 2015
6 AM

After a night of an extremely poor sleep, I charged my phone and the laptop, and booked a room at Delta Hotel. I got myself an Octopus Card (like Compass Card), and after a 40-minute commute (YAY for free Wi-Fi on buses!) I was at my home for the next 3 nights. The stay at this hotel ran me HKD$788 after a 5% fee for paying with a credit card, which was CAD$127 at the time.

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How my Thailand vacation turned into a Hong Kong vacation, or the importance of keeping your crap in order: part 1.

Apparently, a passport that is valid for the duration of the stay with enough blank pages for stamps is not always good enough. I hope, my story will help and inform those in situations similar to mine. Let my mistakes teach you a lesson, because I sure as hell am learning a good one.

Thursday, February 5th, 2015.
Around 10 PM.

My family: the parents, brothers, grandmother, my cousin, her husband and their newborn baby George, and I have anticipated our Thailand vacation since the dates were booked earlier in January. My plan is to meet them in Koh Samui, stay there until the 16th, then fly to Hong Kong for 4 days, and then back to Vancouver. I booked my 2 weeks off work, and was lucky enough to purchase my tickets right before the Canadian dollar made an unpleasant dip, and sunk down to around 75% of its US accomplice. Both of my brothers, who have oddly left one and two days respectively prior to my departure, have already started their journeys, not without issues – bot did not have a sufficient amount of money on hands, relying solely on magnetized plastic: credit and debit cards, so my mom was already having a minor freak out; and now, to top it off, after browsing through the document list just to double-check that I am aware of all the requirements (this was my second trip to Thailand, and the last time I had gotten my Thai visa right at the airport within 15 minutes) I have found myself realizing that Thai authorities require a passport to be valid for 6 months or longer.

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