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Elsewhere

2013: INVADING THE STREETS 2013 Sept. 13, 2018

 

Some 132 000 people from the Philippines living on the territory, that probably means 100 000 ladies, half of them, gathering every Sunday for their huge picnic that invades all Chung Wan, Central district, from Hong Kong Central Station and Ferries Terminal to the giant lobbies of HSBC headquarters by Norman Foster, or reaching the foot of the Pei Tower.

A leisure day, a day to recover cultural identity, a day to lovingly meet with friends, certainly a holy day but undoubtedly a fairy day…

A great opportunity to re-use...

Each group marks off its piece of land by spreading out on the floor used cardboards that will become table-cloth, comfortable rugs, or just the illusion of a welcoming homeland for this almost cosy home-sweet-home, a short-lived one.

In this city brimming over with people and buildings*, no main square and no meeting places big enough for this massive gathering and the cardboard pieces of land are soon touching one another according to some unknown rule…

32° C, saturated with moisture

Every single one here is seeking for a little bit of fresh air or at least, a shield from the sun or the monsoon rain … and the winner is the Foster’s Tower Lobby, open on both sides, with its very Fen Shui little breeze…

For those who cannot find accomodation there, any other covered area is deeply coveted : the chinese style pavillions of the fountains square, but mostly the countless walking paths, suspended between the buildings, offering pedestrians kilometers of safe tracks, crossing over the streets and going through shopping galleries or office and hotel lobbies, in this island of so many superimposed stratas.

A loving magnet joining them together amidst glass and concrete…

If they find each other so easily in this accumulation it can only be through the magic of their cellphones and the force of habit… no organization behind all this… they follow their community instinct…

If the general attitude is quiet, friendly, relax but still dignified and steady – no foot, no food would ever dare invade the neighbouring cardboard frontier – their deafening enthusiasm resounds  in the concrete of this improvised public garden.

If a long and placid waiting queue is formed in front of CHANEL or ST LAURENT, summer sales are not the reason for it, but the most tempting dishes cooked by those Sunday caterers who, displaying their production on the ground, sell their sisters the savours and flavours of their homelands…

 Just for once, on sunday…

Another ballet is starting much later, around 10p.m. when the City cleaning staff start collecting cardboards and refusal bags abandoned by so many of them, as if the ladies, tired of taking care of well-to-do hong-kongese and expat appartments, hotels and offices, did indulge into not cleaning behind themselves, just for once, on Sundays…

-MH-

 *7 203 000inhabitants on  1104km² -  ranking 4th in terms of density.