Shower with a Stranger

I don’t usually share my intimate details, but tonight I had an encounter that made me worry about waking my neighbours, and I was sure I needed another shower in the morning… :o

I had stripped and stepped into my shower after a long day. It had been hot everyday this week so my sweaty skin welcomed the cool shower. I was just beginning to cool off when a stranger joined me in the shower. The moment we made eye contact, my heart began to race. We had not met before but a familiar feeling rose inside me. Without contact I let out a tiny yelp. “This will be an interesting night,” I thought. The stranger stirred and slid up against the shower wall. I visually measured – this is double the size I usually encounter.
Eventually I couldn’t help it any more. I let out a scream.

And I noped the fuck out of there.

I welcome joint showers but not with a fucking prehistorically sized cockroach. #hkproblems #cantshowertonight #cockroachminustheroach

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Trains

During my morning commute on the subway… Saw these two children so excitedly waving and saying goodbye to a passing train.

When did we stop getting so excited about adding trains and cars? We used to love seeing two speeding metal tubes meet and – instead of colliding – race past each other, rattling the carriages with rush of air. We used to come up with games while in the backseats while adults drive – fake shopping, imaginary cooking, painful “yellow car”, and my keenness of license plates.
We are now focused on ourselves. Our phones’ virtual worlds. Our schedules. Our future. Our lack of time. we rarely withdraw to look up and beyond to the world we are in at the very moment.

A reminder to take a moment to see through the eyes of a child.

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Food for thought.

“Letting go” versus “Giving up”

Is it the same or different? How?

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Pebbles

What do u want your memories to be?

I was stopping through Portugal for a few days on the way home from a “Backpacking” trip through the Basque Country, and a friend decided to take me to an island right off the coast. The island itself seemed to be a common tourist destination, as there were people from all over the world getting off boats and swimming around the dock, and there was a place you could hike to that hosted thousands of seagull nests, but along the southern edge of the island was an old fort and a stone bridge that stood about 25 feet off the water. Now, there was this girl I had a thing for with us, and when she saw people jumping off of it, she asked if anyone else would do it. Of course I would!

I have a dreadful fear of heights.

So I got up on top of this bridge and stood there for maybe 45 minutes, just staring off the edge, trying to get myself to jump. People from every corner of the globe would come up, cheer me on, and then leave disappointed. The girl wasn’t even really paying attention to me anymore, but the struggle had become much more than that for me. I was going to cure this fear, damnit!

Well, just as I was about to give up, an old man came along who, swear to god, was the living, breathing embodiment of Ernest Hemingway. He had the beard, the serious look, the belly… were it not for his Portuguese accent, he could have easily passed for Hemingway. “I do not believe you are going to jump.” I was baffled. Everyone up to that point had told me I could do it. “What?” “You won’t. Here.” He reached down and plucked this old pebble off the bridge. “Keep this. You’ll look at it and remember the day you didn’t jump.” I took the pebble from him and looked at it. He shook his head at me. And then, I don’t even know what came over me, I just shouted, “Fuck that!” and threw it at the water. As I jumped from the bridge, he was still laughing in this deep, jolly tone. Long story short, another man who had been watching the entire time helped pull me out of the water and offered to buy me a beer, but as I was standing there, with all of what had just happened sinking in, Hemingway came down the steps to the water’s edge and handed me another rock. “You’ll remember this one as the day you jumped.”

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Teaching China to Drive on the Right Side of the Road

This is the first step to allowing China mainlanders to drive into Hong Kong.

In March, HK drivers without Mainland China licences will get special permits for one day trips into China, called “自駕遊” (traveling by driving yourself, zi gaa yau). It is the first stage to allow drivers from both sides of the border to cross freely. Does anyone see a problem with this?! I see no mention of supplementary driving education or test to verify drivers understand the regulations on the other side. Speaking of the other side, Hong Kong and China drive on opposite sides of the road!

Now to put it into a social and current context, visitors without cars are already blamed for the tension between the mainland and the special administrative region (link to my previous post). And more blame on pregnant mothers being parasites to the Hong Kong welfare system. Tourists on foot loiter in random areas on Hong Kong’s narrow sidewalks. What will you get with drivers in petrol-fueled machines who usually drive on the opposite side of the road, who are not used to Hong Kong’s narrow roads and relatively stricter regulations? It also poses a higher challenge for border staff to filter out pregnant mothers and deny access, which was the solution proposed by the government and York Chow (Health department). Henry Tang, which mainland Chinese merchants are you pleasing by signing this? I didn’t need more convincing to not vote for you, now I’m registering just to vote against you. (Disclaimer: this is not a political endorsement.) Continue reading

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So, About that video of a Chinese Professor calling Hong Kongers “Dogs” and “Bastards”…

The year of the Rabbit has not brought a gentle mood to Hong Kong. Blow after blow of incidents heightened the tension between Mainland China and Hong Kong. Here are recent news stories and personal experiences that happened recently:

-         Mainland pregnant women exploit Hong Kong’s overloaded emergency rooms and delivery wards just so they can birth a child into Hong Kong residence status. They cross the border during the final moments of pregnancy, putting themselves and their children in danger and straining Hong Kong’s under resourced hospitals. <SCMP>

-         On Jan 5th, a staff from the D&G store at Tsim Sha Tsui’s Canton Road denied Hong Kongers from photographing the store but allowed mainlanders to, subsequently leading to a protest outside the store:  <Yahoo news>

-         Over the weekend I watched the film A Beautiful Life (不再讓你孤單), a stereotype of Hong Kong vs China characters.

-         Today, a video has gone viral on Facebook amongst Hong Kongers, showing a Mandarin television talk show of a Professor calling Hong Kongers dogs and bastards

The video that has gone viral: Mainland Chinese Televsion: Hongkonger are dogs 中國電視台: 香港人係狗 (Mandarin with English subtitles)

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A Romantic Rant against Technology

Language has become vulgar. Romance is rare. Courting has evolved to one night stands.

One thing to blame is the advance of technology and how it reduced waiting time. Super markets, text messaging, contraception are all products and enablers of instantaneous materialistic, communicative, and sexual satisfaction.They have provided convenience but challenged a balanced and sustained lifestyle. Preserved and over seasoned produce vs. fresh goods from the local butcher. Unconsciously typed messages (you know you can multitask) vs. carefully selected words and tidy calligraphy. I am not discrediting the skills required in the modern alternatives, but don’t you miss the times when a pursuer can’t read about all your likes and history on one page, and they make an effort to find out what you liked? Or making plans to have a nice dinner a week in advance instead of meeting up wherever convenient through Whatsapp?

Tom Ford, when reflecting on the present, said: Continue reading

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