In order to understand how unique Hong Kong is compared to the world, one would have look at its history. During the collapse of the Qin Dynasty many years ago, Hong Kong was on “loan” to the British Empire after the defeat in the Opium War. Under the rule of the British Empire, Hong Kong was given freedom and it grew from a small fishing village into one of the biggest trading economies in the world. Hong Kong is located at the southern tip of China and naturally it serves as a gateway into China from the western world with its deep water harbors and ports.
Due to the position of Hong Kong politically and geographically, it has became the middle ground of the east and west. People from all over the world came to Hong Kong to trade and brought their culture into Hong Kong. Slowly they integrated and became locals themselves. In my opinion, what is truly spectacular about Hong Kong is that not only do they manage to have so many different cultures coexist in such a small city but that they are able to mix everything together and invent their own, the Hong Kong culture.
During my stays in Hong Kong, I love spending time on the Hong Kong Trams or “Ding Ding”, as Hong Kongers like to call it. I spend my day on the trams going from the east to the west side of Hong Kong island and people watch. I put my camera up and take shots whenever something interesting shows up in my viewfinder. I run into many walks of life during my many rides on the “Ding Ding”, students, housewives, tourists, foreign housemaids from South East Asia, sales people running between locations for their clients and many more. One thing I found very fascinating is that no matter whether their ride is 10 minutes or an hour, Hong Kongers tend to utilize their time on transit to nap or bury their head in their smartphones, conducting their many hustles. It is definitely interesting and eye opening for me to witness but I am not sure how I would endure this tormenting lifestyle if I had to do it myself.
Even though I was born in Hong Kong and spent the first decade of my life in this place, I’ve never really felt that this is somewhere I could call home. I definitely relate to them on many levels but at the same time I feel like I couldn‘t be further away from their way of life. However, I do absolutely admire their never-stop-fighting and never-give-up mentality, although it seems it has faded away over the past few years. I do believe that the younger generation of Hong Kongers will pick up the torch and carry on, make them a proud bunch again.
I‘m happy you enjoyed my story to the end. Thank you for reading. I hope my photos give you a better picture (literally) and deeper understanding of what my words may not be able to convey about this amazing place.