At the start of the trip to Macau, just the thought of it, made me think that solo backpacking and sightseeing is just better than with a guide who come in late and made you hurry up on things to see because you have to catch the ferry back to Hong Kong. Such was in haste that I really do not know if I have appreciated Macau entirely because I missed with so much to see and so much to learn. I am not one of the complainers but this one trip to Macau just made me whine abit when our guide, Anita, a petite, with old-fashion eyeglasses came picking us up late at the ferry terminal. Because she was late, so does our jaunt.
The singular most popular destination, though touristy for me is the Ruins of St. Paul’s Cathedral, declared in 2005, by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in Macau. Built from 1582-1602, St. Paul’s Cathedral used to enjoy the favours of Monarchs all over the world and them vying for place of prominence with the sizes of their endowments and gifts to the Cathedral. All went well until the rise in prominence of Hong Kong as a busy port city and Macau went on a spiralling decline, so does St. Paul’s Cathedral. Gifts and endowments came unusually sparingly and in 1835, in the midst of a typhoon, bad luck struck St. Paul as it was gutted in fire. What remains is the front facade of the Cathedral which, until today, stood the tests of time and so becomes popular and touristy. What one sees on the facade are carved images done by Japanese Christians who were exiled from Japan. That one, I saw and captured. The rest, may be for the next time, on my own.
I would have wished to see the crypt at the Ruins of St. Paul, one where Jesuits were laid peacefully. Also, there are other adjacent places to see surrounding St. Paul but as Anita said, only 10 minutes at the Ruins. I was trying to recollect some previously researched facts about the St. Paul’s Cathedral and getting the right timing for photography, 10 minutes is just simply not enough. I told her if I can take a cab going to the Venetian from St. Paul’s and she flatly told me that cabs are not reliable in Macau. Without any much of a choice, I took my time taking photos and huffing around as I was walking way past Anita to get to the ruins ahead of her and take more time to just let the site sink in abit.
It was never a scene to behold when I was frenzied around getting photos and Anita asking me to get faster and the bus leaves. I just felt ripped off the money I spent going to Macau and treated shabbily by her. I told her that should she be earlier at the pier, this would not be necessary. She just gave me an apologetic smile but sadly, as I learned it the hard way, going solo is one I will stick and prefers domestically or overseas.