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Monday, September 7, 2015

Hong Kong - A Thriving Metropolis Set Amongst A Sub-Tropical Backdrop

I have been going to Hong Kong since I was a small boy and it has changed extraordinarily since that first time in the early 1980's. The longest gap I have had between visits was the one last week which is 17 or 18 years. In that time a great deal has changed. Where I once worked on Wyndham Street was now unrecognisable and almost all the old businesses that I knew of had gone. I felt at one point as though I was walking amongst ghosts but thankfully McDonalds and The Foreign Correspondents Club were still there along with some other markers which gave me bearings.

Hong Kong is a thriving metropolis which behaves in a manner which resembles the jungle-like vegetation that surrounds the city and carpets the mountains behind. It is changing daily and nothing survives too long as it is either eaten up or merged into something else or overshadowed by the next building which pops up.

My great fear or anxiety that I get as I wander the streets is one of identity. As I look at the air-conditioning units on grimy walls stacked up to the sky I often wonder how many lives are taking place in each and every window and how that person's life is no less relevant than the next. In a city like that, how then does one create an identity?

For some it is through their clothes and that was one of the reason's I sought out The Armoury to see if they had time to chat. The Armoury is one business which is creating it's own unique identity in a city in which people very much use clothes to convey who they are. After all most Hong Kong people don't entertain in their own homes as they are usually confined by space. Many don't have the luxury of owning their own car since you have to have a parking space too. It is therefore quite understandable that you would be more inclined to show who you are by what you have on your back, your neck, your feet and on your wrist.

I hope that over the next few weeks we will be able to post up more on our interview with The Armoury and in the interim I wish to share with you how much Hong Kong has changed since the 1950's.

Very little high development in the 1950's looking back at Central, Hong Kong

A thriving metropolis of skyscrapers in 2015

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