Tom Vincent

Essays on hacking, travel and self-improvement

Businessmen they drink my wine

First day of work today and it’s been full of confusion and anxiety, but that’s part of the process right? Running on pure lack of sleep because of the humidity (apparently your supposed to leave the air conditioning on overnight), I met AM to head into Central. The tubes are like London in some ways: there’s the absolute carnage of people cramming into each carriage — I guess no westernised city escapes the morning rush hour — but a strange serenity whilst they’re moving; everyone seems to be friendly even when I’m half falling over (those handrails are a luxury!), whilst others are busy playing on their phone (you have phone signal in the underground here).

AM and his friend invited me to breakfast tomorrow which is ideal as I’ve hardly had a chance to check out café’s or restaurants. Before I headed out here, I heard most people eat out for all meals and that does seem to be the case. We have a small common room per floor of the halls which houses the usual kitchen utilities. I checked out the fridge earlier… man, the smell! I can see why they eat out.

After the inevitable hassle of getting a visitor card for McDuck Enterprises, I was slowly introduced to the team. First I met a bunch of local students on a similar placement to me: it seems McDuck are interested in hiring new blood. Echoing back to my previous job, the team seemed a bit confused on what I should be doing, so I was given a mass of HR documents to read.

PW arrived sometime later and introduced me to the senior team. There are a few teams sharing the same office space, of which there are about 30 people in each — fairly large. You maybe 6000 miles away, but an office still looks like an office.

Lunch was quite early but welcome. I went with the other students over the road to a shared buffet. Making conversation was quite fun; a lot of pointing and gestures before we settled on a happy medium. In fact, that’s a little unfair: most of the students I’ve met so far speak good English.

Following another trawl through the reading material after lunch, AM and I headed towards the second McDuck Enterprise building in Olympian City. The remainder of the day was spent sitting through presentations and the typical HR activity guff. It was interesting to see most new starters were locals: at most there were three or four (agitated looking) foreigners. Actually, this observation seems to hold true in most of Hong Kong: walking through the many shopping centres, MTR (tube) stations, even the tourist spots near Victoria Harbor; I’ve seldom seen any westerners, though the few I do see always exchange a nod of familiarity. For a city much like London, there seems to be less diversity than I would have expected.

I’ve just finished the trek back to Kowloon Tong, skipping dinner (must stop this) and heading to the computer room to write this. I expect I’ll be at the security office shortly: I’ve locked myself out of my room again!