Typhoon Vicente

2 Aug

The notice board at Hongqiao airport

Shanghai last week had beautiful weather.  Picture perfect, drop dead gorgeous sunny days which I just wrote about.

The rest of the country was not quite so lucky.  Severe flooding in Beijing left over 70 people dead and a typhoon in southern China pretty much wiped Monday and Tuesday off the calendar.  Colleagues who were in Hong Kong for meetings with very important people had the meetings canceled and I even heard that Hong Kong put up the T10 flag – the highest level on the typhoon system.  It was the worst storm in 11 years.

So, where did I (try to) go on Wednesday afternoon?

Shenzhen.  Shenzhen as in an hour away from Hong Kong, Shenzhen.  Probably not my best piece of  traveling.

Of course, this trip was for work and it had been planned some time ago.  Truthfully I completely missed the news of the typhoon until Tuesday at lunch because I was blissfully enjoying the blue skies in Shanghai.  But then I heard one thing, then another, a lunch meeting with a Hong Kong native, an afternoon meeting with someone who had worked there for 15 years.  I got the sense that my trip may be an adventure.

My typhoon story was a three hour delay in the Shanghai airport, two hours in the airport and one hour on the plane itself.  Landing in Shenzhen my suitcase was a little damp, but nothing big.  The taxi line took nearly an hour but I wound up next to a nice Taiwanese kid who had lived in the US and we talked about a lot of nothing (For example, did you know that President Obama’s brother has a barbecue restaurant in Shenzhen?) and soon enough I was at the hotel.  It was sprinkling but people were out and about, stretching their legs in the cool night air.  I settled into the hotel and prepped for my Thursday meetings.

The rest of the trip was fine, slightly soggy, but fine.  It rained pretty much every day, at times downpours, at times sprinkles, but I was really no worse for the wear.  Though it didn’t seem that way at the beginning, I had some travel luck – and a couple beautiful (post-typhoon) weekend days in Hong Kong as well.

Have you had any travel adventures that focused on the weather?  I remember traveling in Europe over 10 years ago now where we were waiting for a train in a snow storm.  Any stories that you’d like to share?

6 Responses to “Typhoon Vicente”

  1. Anne August 3, 2012 at 2:59 am #

    Girl you are crazy…..don’t take those type of weather risks!!!

    • gkm2011 August 3, 2012 at 7:03 pm #

      This one was a bit of overkill – but I am certainly glad the typhoon had passed by before I landed in Shenzhen!

  2. expatlingo August 3, 2012 at 6:27 am #

    One of my most scary travel “adventures” was being driven across the mountain pass between Bishkek and Almaty in a blizzard in the middle of the night: http://wp.me/p2ctSb-hY

    I would not have done it today, but I was young and on one of my first work-related trips. It was hideous.

    • gkm2011 August 3, 2012 at 7:06 pm #

      Yes, I remember that post – I think I’ll have to skip that one too!


  1. Hong Kong blue sky day « 中国 Jumble - August 7, 2012

    […] into blue skies (and my jade bracelet) After heading to Shenzhen and catching the tail end of Typhoon Vicente, I spent a fun weekend in Hong Kong, shopping, catching up with friends and enjoying the beautiful […]

  2. Typhoon Haikui – the second time got me « 中国 Jumble - August 19, 2012

    […] wrote a couple of weeks ago about my near-miss of Typhoon Vicente during my business trip to Shenzhen.  Unfortunately though, it seems that this year typhoon season […]

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