Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Day the Cable Car Didn't Fall

We decided to tackle another big HK sight-seeing mecca because 1) it was a gorgeous day, 2) we still don't know that many people, which leads me to 3) we didn't have anything else to do and 4) part of us still feel like tourists, so why not?!

Our target: The Tian Tan Buddha, the world's largest outdoor buddha, which measures 110 feet and is made out of bronze. It also happens to be perched on the side of a very large mountain so we decided to take the Ngong Ping cable car (don't ask, I have NO IDEA how to pronounce that) up to the top since it provided breath-taking views of Tung Chung Bay, Lantau Island and, well, Hong Kong Airport. We had a few options on getting there, but ruled out the bus (lots of turns = lots of vomit) and hiking (no explanation required). Anyhoo, it really is quite a ride -- because the cable car is strung over the water and traverses around 4 mountains before it drops you off near the statue. It's a 3.5 mile ride. The views are incredible as you'll see in the pictures below.

Being afraid of both heights and flying, I had moments of anxiety, which Vin totally laughed away. (I don't get mad when he does this; it actually makes me feel better.) He stopped laughing when we ran into our friends on our way back from the Buddha and they told us that one of the cable cars had mysteriously fallen last year. Yep, just fell. Not sure if it was into the water or the side of the mountain, but it fell. They reassured us that this was during maintenance and no one died... but you can understand why I was relieved to have both feet on the ground upon hearing this news.

So here are the pictures of the day the cable car didn't fall:

The death car, I mean cable car

Going up.... (alternate caption: "a precarious clothesline dangling over the South China Sea")

A look back (beautiful and terrifying)

The suckers, ahem, hikers

Almost there (you can see the little guy in the distance)

Only 350 steps to go... (imagine how the hikers feel)

Did I say 350?? um, it felt like 3500!

But we made it and we're still smiling :)

On our way back down (and blissfully unaware that cable cars could fall)

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