30 years later – now it is my turn to bring my dad to the zoo.

It was very difficult to persuade and convince my dad to visit me in Hong Kong. He wasn’t keen to fly alone and it was very difficult to find another person to fly with him. I was so thankful to my creative director, Paul who accompanied my dad from Singapore to Hong Kong. My intention is to “keep” him here as long as possible so we get some quality father-and-son bonding. Dad is working in Singapore and I am away in Hong Kong. There isn’t much chance for us to connect. So far, so good, I managed to “encourage and train” my dad to explore Hong Kong on his own. Felicia and Elkan (not forgetting Gareth and family too!) are flying in this Friday and I intended to keep him here for another 2 more weeks. Both Cousin Mike and Harshad were kind to offer their extra bedroom for my dad.

Dad had no idea about this weekend’s itinerary. He kept asking me what’s there in Guangzhou. I decided to bring him to one of the best zoos and circuses around this region. He was skeptical about this week’s trip when I told him it will be just zoo, animals, flowers and parks. Surely, it does sound a little too “old and boring” for 2 old boys. (Well, we did the more “manly” karaokes and bars last weekend.) I wasn’t too worried about his reservations. Knowing him well enough, I know he will be excited the moment we arrive at Chimelong Hotel. My old man is just like me – we love to experience and see new things.

I was absolutely right. The moment we arrived at Chimelong Hotel, dad was happily snapping away with his iphone. He was impressed by the hotel’s massive structures and its unique white tiger cafe. We dropped our bags in our room and rushed to the zoo. We were like 2 little boys. On the tram into the open Safari, he was video-taping throughout the entire tour. I have never seen him this excited with zoo animals. Later that evening, I gave him another spectacular treat at the Chimelong Circus. It was all wows and laughters for him. I was so glad that he enjoyed himself a lot.

The next morning, we took a 1-hour train from Guangzhou to Zhuhai. The new and massive Guangzhou South Train Station was an eye-opener for him. For a spilt second, he thought I brought him to an airport. I knew he will be impressed by all these mega-structure. Along the way to Zhuhai, dad was snapping and video-taping the farms and old houses.

We didn’t do much at Zhuhai as we had only 3 hours of daylight. We did a quick 1-hour tour at the plantation, went shopping at Gongbei border shops and went back to the hotel for a nice dinner. Just before we hit off to bed, dad and I went to the hotel’s gym for a game of table tennis. He was panting so much that I worried about his heart-condition.

This was a great weekend for both of us. 30 years ago, he brought me to the zoo and today, it is my turn to show him around. Who knows, maybe if time permits, Elkan will be bringing me and my dad to another zoo in another 20-30 years time! Dad is a great companion. I just have to bear with his constant, long lectures on tea leaves and tea pots. Trust me, after 10 days of Chinese Tea Leaves lectures, I consider myself quite an expert.

One Response to 30 years later – now it is my turn to bring my dad to the zoo.

  1. chenhao0306 says:

    That sounds like a lot of fun. Congratulations on keeping such great relationships with your father! He looks so happy and healthy in the photos. Looking forward to your blog in 20/30 yrs’ time 😉

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