When I was younger, like 16 I used to look at the internet for a cool screensaver. Sometimes I also used my own photos for that but when I was looking for new cool ones they were usually either tropical islands or picture of skyscrapers.
One day I found a few nice screensaver of New York and also one of some skyscrapers in the dark. I couldn’t figure it out which city it might be, but after a few days I didn’t care much about this. I had of ideas about my future “dream job” but I figured out that I’m not creative enough to make it as fashion designer and that working as translator is probably also not that what I want.
A few years later I found myself studying International Business Administration at University. I tried somehow to combine my passion for languages, dream of traveling/ living abroad with something useful. I was thinking about places in the world I could do an internship, I thought during that time that Hong Kong might be a nice place because I wouldn’t have to worry too much about language, but interning in China sounded also quite appealing – and also more realistic.
Two years of taking Mandarin classes later, I still loved it even though my Mandarin is crappy (I can order a beer, I guess that’s something?), and now strongly considering to intern in Mainland China but still secretly dreaming of Hong Kong. I wanted to experience Asia. Discussing this with a friend, he mentioned that Hong Kong would be too expensive. Also too competitive…
I was applying for internships in mainland China. I had some interviews that went well, some interviews that were strange and one that was totally draining. So, I found myself with two offers, but both of them didn’t feel right. In one of them I would have been the only foreigner among people who don’t speak English – my Chinese is crappy by the way. I hate not to be able to communicate with people around me about simple things. One morning I saw a position in Hong Kong and applied without having any expectations having any chance to get this position. I didn’t expect much. I just planned my return to Germany which means I was preparing parcels to send home.
One morning, I woke up at 4am as usual (blame the windows for that) and the first thing I did was checking the phone while still half asleep. I was too sleepy to realise what was written in the e-mail I received. Why was there such a long text to tell me that they don’t want me? It took more than a second and third time of reading to understand what it was all about: I got the position in Hong Kong! It was so unreal. The next few weeks were full of intense arranging of flights, planning, leaving my wonderful flat share in the UK, seeing my friends in Germany and telling my parents over and over that the internship in Hong Kong was no joke and the contract has been signed – they ask me a couple of times whether everything is really fixed and I was leaving again for real. I still had no idea what to expect from this city – except for getting lost from time to time, my undeniable talent.
After I came back to Germany, I prepared a diashow for my family with pictures of Hong Kong and my travels around Asia. During the slideshow I noticed one picture reminding me on something – this picture looked familiar to a screensaver I downloaded a few years ago! Thinking of the fact that suddenly the mystery of the city pictured in screensaver picture I downloaded years ago was Hong Kong still amazes me. Even though I let go the thought of going to Hong Kong it somehow happened. Life is full of surprises sometimes.
Hong Kong I love & miss you!