My twelve days in Hong Kong/Macau turned out great! I did almost as many things as there were kinds of fish balls at this stall in the Shatin wet market. I met old friends (high school, grad school, New School!) and made new ones, visited two universities, and, of course, got (pretty much) the China visa I was after. It was also a perfect place and time to process my first three months in what I learned to call "the Mainland" (rather than "China" or "the rest of China.") Shanghai is in many ways more like Hong Kong than other Chinese cities but there were still some striking difference, from the spacious flatness of the former to the latter's at once global and Chinese energy (the screen of the free tablet I got in my first hotel, above, with Google, Facebook and Youtube as well as WeChat and Weibo happy together, is a vision of a both/and as yet unattainable in Shanghai). I'm sorry I won't be able to return to Hong Kong during my Chinese stay (that single-entry visa!) but I'm certain I will be back. I'll also be seeing a few of the people I met in Hong Kong when they swing by Shanghai in the Spring... And among Hong Kong's other gifts were many new connections for me to follow up in Shanghai!