Taken Away

Photography

There were plenty of closing down restaurants and some even had a long family history background. They often made it to the news headline just because it’s worth noting that they had been around for decades, or even sometimes more than half a century. Their roots have grown so deep in the community that it’s so earthshaking when they disappear. We like commemorating things that are on the verge extinction.

I appreciate these old masters that has been contributing so much to the Hong Kong local dining scene. Without them, Hong Kong would not be the same Hong Kong we’re living in right now. It’s what precisely makes Hong Kong unique. On a recent event, I met young American chef with a tattoo of our symbolic ‘Bank of China’ Tower (Hong Kong). He said he visited Hong Kong a while ago and fell in love with it. He knew he had to come back.

I’ve been working at the same location for more than 5 years now. I would not say I know the district well enough as a guide. One thing that I know particular well is the places I usually get my lunch at. There’s always that Cantonese Diner (Cha Chaan Tang) nearby where I feel comfortable with. The staff recognize some of the regulars with their faces. They would be asking for order in a lot nicer manner than the unfamiliar ones. The diners in Hong Kong are notorious for their average service.

One of the first few impressions I got from this diner was, the staffs’ conversations. They do talk a lot while working, some of them swear a lot, some of them talk silly, and they all know each other so well. They have been serving in this diner for long period of time. As a matter of fact, it has been around for nearly 15 years already.

This diner belongs to a franchise, however operates independently. Other branches were all different in what they serve, standard varies as well.

It’s such a shock when they posted on their shop window recently that they have to close down (without relocation) due to the increased in rent by the landlord. It’s not that I’d drop dead immediately. It feels like a piece of my personal space has been taken away forever.

Barred
Gap
American Chef
Liberty

Eureka

Mobile Phone, Photography

I still cannot believe I’ve not seen a dressed up Santa anywhere in public this year. This was quite a BS year in terms of how poorly companies, organizations, properties managements have spent their money on the Christmas decorations and events.

The older I get, the more truth I understand. Christmas means nothing when you’re not associated with Christian/Catholic. It supposed to be a giant birthday for the Jesus Christ. And myself, an non-believer has nothing to do with it, and not to make it a big deal of it. Maybe I’m missing the whole point to have fun and party, my part of life does not have a lot of that either. No wonder in China they do not celebrate for Christmas.

With all that mumbo jumbo, I have however gotten myself a lovely present from eBay. I read about how much I shouldn’t be spending over for a used film SLR (which is something that’d been holding me back other than its size and weight). I was glad I could first try out one a few months earlier before I make up my mind. Until I found some excellent condition make and models at very reasonable pricing ones. I quickly fell in love with the USSR’s Zenit.

It’s really quite a challenge to go back to ‘Street Photography’ the way before where I mostly photograph people doing random things in the urban setting. I used to think there should be something someone interesting enough to photograph, these type of photographs are turning more or less the same. And the fact is, it is really getting too repetitive as the material goes. The Zenit arrived in perfect timing and to make me think about what I need to do to keep my mind fresh and materials new. That was my Eureka!

And it’d led me to the trail walking. This is what y’all be seeing me do in 2016, at least when it’s not the hottest month of the year.

Central
Scale
Sky
Lights

To the Fullest

Mobile Phone, Photography

I enjoy the quietness of evening simply because there’s nothing else but the music I listen to. It’s the only time when I read, think, type, arrange photographs. It’s all been clear that these are the most productive hours of myself in a day. This distraction free environment has been my mind palace.

Now when i think of my evening, there’s 98% chance I head home after work. Even on my rare weekend photo walkabout, I’d hardly stay later than 6pm. (Oh, this reminds me of when the last time I’d done these walkabouts?!) I feel like I barely know the city at night. Some people say the night is when a city come alive. Just what’s SOHO, what’s Lan Kwai Fong?

I was following a cinematic TV drama ‘Night Shift‘. The entire drama was filmed at night. It centered on a team of police emergency unit patrols in the most complicated quarter of our city. The heart of this show is how realistic the unit are taking on their jobs. The rest of the supporting characters all works at night, but often get neglected. Some come from complicated backgrounds in the gang, some are just ordinary people taking shifts in convenient store, and some are just the ambulance officers. All these interesting elements combined and collided into each other making the show so rich and alive. There’s often the intersection of life, the tension built up in complicated relationships, the sisterhoods and the life or death.

I often want to define what’s living a life to the fullest. I just don’t seem to have experienced this, experienced that. Is it about how much one makes in a month? the travel adventure one’d been to? the 3-star Michelin full course? It’s always about the money. I cannot help myself when I’m in a district where everyone just seem living better than I do. Maybe it’s the suit, maybe it’s the language. It’s the jealousy that I can hardly contained. Others all have a career in this stage of life, while I’m still on a lost boat. I figured whatever I do does not matter anymore. I’ll get it figured when time comes. Maybe that’s a story to tell years after. You can just call it fate.

Unsettling Evening
Welcomes you
Calmness
Folk Music