Hey guys. so as many of you know I just got back from Hong Kong today, Sunday January 20th. All in all, it was a really fun trip! Though, people have been asking me about how it went and I feel the need to be completely forthcoming that it wasn't all smiles and sunshine.
Specifically, the friends that I was in Hong Kong to meet are professional travel photography Instagrammers. These guys have hundreds of thousands of Instagram followers between them and take travel photography incredibly seriously. They come with a list of shots that they want to get, and a list of locations and times where they intend to get them. They move through their shot lists systemically and as efficiently as possible, even if that means skipping meals or only getting 3 hours of sleep. Getting the perfect shot requires equal parts intense planning and luck when it comes to conditions such as weather and lighting, so sometimes revisiting a place that didn’t look so good the day before becomes necessary. My friends thrive treating a travel destination like a McDonalds and the Instagram content they want like their Happy Meals; get ‘em and go go go.
I, on the other hand, treat travel far differently. I look at travel as an opportunity to experience different cultures, different foods, and immerse myself in the environment of a place. I often go without a specific agenda unless there’s something I really want to see, and am a professional at just winging it! I love shopping and sightseeing, looking at architecture, and most of all finding unique dining experiences, and I do so at a relaxed, leisurely pace. You can probably tell already that between these two styles there's bound to be conflict.
While accompanying my friends as they nailed their shots came at the cost of hunger and constant fatigue, I was determined to keep up. I agreed to this trip after all, and I was dependent on them to capture photos of me for my Instagram as well. While in Hong Kong my brand of “winging it” became following them around and seeing what unfolded. Even though I was irritable and not feeling well for a fair amount of the time, I still found enjoyment and seeing things I would not have otherwise sought out and getting a chance to spend time with these incredibly talented creatives I seldom see.
What's the moral here? Well, I suppose it all comes down to maintaining a positive mentality, communicating your needs clearly, and willingness to compromise. If I was ever hungry, I would say so. Sometimes this would be met with unrelating shrugs, but other times they would express mutual hunger. Regardless of whichever response I got, my friends were accommodating in my need for eating several meals a day. We even developed a pattern of splitting up so that one person could do their thing (whether it be edit content or even nap) while the others got food or shot content.
Speaking of napping, quality sleep was hard to come by this trip. Thankfully we all agreed that I did not need to accompany them on their sunrise shoots. That gave me the opportunity to sleep in a little bit and then take my time in the mornings getting ready so that I could look good while in front of the camera. However, that also meant that two loud guys would be romping around the room at the earliest of hours, often waking me. We all had moments accidentally falling asleep in Ubers this trip, a hilarious consequence of our ambition. The collective sleep deprivation was real but we all powered through.
Finally, we were able to make it to the one place I wanted to go - Choi Hung Estate - where my friends took the incredible photos of me you see in this post. So we all got what we wanted! I look back at the last few days of hunger, jet lag, and exhaustion fondly, though I am very thankful the trip was only a few days long. My friends are incredibly impressive people and I respect their hustle even if I do disagree with their priorities. I’m excited to share more content from this trip on Instagram - I hope you’ll keep an eye out!
How would you have coped in this situation? What are you: team see everything or team relaxing travels? Can’t wait to see your thoughts in the comments! xoxo