Friday, 26 October 2012

All You Need to Know About'em

fishstory_(Leica D-Lux 5)

Ever stumbled upon the same sort of store in Hong Kong?

From top right clock-wise: dried fish guts, pork (in lighter colour) and pig liver (in darker colour) sausages, cured pork meat (stick-shaped, lower right), dried mushrooms, fish guts again and giant grouper skin (top left).

Thursday, 25 October 2012

National Game

mahjong_(Leica D-Lux 5)

Mahjong, literally "sparrow" in Chinese, is widely accepted as the Chinese national game. There are different variants of the game in different parts of China. Hong Kong's mahjong and Taiwanese mahjong do not share the same rules, for example. A putative notion about mahjong is that it helps prevent dementia. Not scientifically proven, but no harm to give credence to the common belief either. After all, mahjong is good for killing time and players may even chance their luck to win some pocket money from the game.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

I'm Not Going Anywhere

bored(Ricoh GX200)

Today's shot was taken on my way to hydrotherapy this morning for my sprained ankle. Hong Kong has a rather unsustainable public healthcare system – it is simply too good and patients are way undercharged. No public health insurance of any sort is in place for the residents who are heavily subsidised for healthcare. The corollary is service abuse. The conventional wisdom among the locals is that when one falls into serious sickness or suffers injuries, the first thing is to queue up for public health service as a backup plan before deciding whether or not to use the private service.

Take my sprained ankle for example. I consulted two private foot specialists before but for long-term follow-up I use the public healthcare service. The public hospitals offer the largest troops of physiotherapists and the most complete facilities to help recovery at a minimal charge of, for example, just about 6 British pounds or 7 US dollars for each 2-hour physio session.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Sleepy Is As Sleepy Does

drowsy_(Leica D-Lux 5)

If you can't fight it away, join it… but mind your boss.

Monday, 22 October 2012

A Strip of Light

lightstrip(Leica D-Lux 5)

Light of hope maybe? Have a great start on Monday!

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Kungfu Minors

kungfuminors(Leica D-Lux 5)

Hong Kong has a small population (below 10%) of South Asians, most of which are living with a meager family income. In particular, their kids bear the blunt of the lack of means for what care otherwise should have been given them. No wonder they are often seen roaming in groups in the street and playing impromptu games like fighting with discarded bamboo sticks. Most of them can speak Cantonese, the local native tongue, much better than they can write or read Chinese (Note: Cantonese and written Chinese are based on the same Chinese characters). For this reason, and for the lack of guidance at home, these kids who do good at school are few and far between. With the language barrier, the skin colour and the image of seemingly urchins, these ethnic minority kids – and the grown-ups too – have been struggling for acceptance. It goes without saying that what awaits them in the employment market are the lower end ones.

But it is hopefully moving towards a better scenario for them.  A year of so ago, the local government took the matter more seriously by devising some employment rule to bring in more South Asians in the government service team.  The society is also witnessing subtle changes in the society’s acceptance of ethnic minorities as evidenced by rave praises of the good performance of a South Asian news reporter who appear in a Chinese TV and is gaining increasing popularity.

Occasionally, I take photos of South Asian kids when I come across them in the street. After every shot, no matter they are young kids or teenagers, their first response is unanimously going up to me, racing to take a look of it on the screen. "Let me see, let me see," they will shout excitedly as if that could draw the most attention. Their response seems to tell that taking a photo is almost a luxury to them.  These kids are quite friendly and their English is usually surprising good.