Sai Kung Scenes

More shots today from yesterday’s stroll. All the images are in monochrome but processed from the camera’s B&W preset to an alternative I chose.

There is a man on the promenade, who sells chestnuts. He always looks as if he has lost a pound and found sixpence. I have never seen him smile. Maybe he has a tough life, full of sadness. His only income is selling chestnuts perhaps and only then “in season”. I speculate of course. He may just be a miserable old devil. But I give him the benefit of the doubt. There are too many people in Hong Kong who get by on too little whilst others are richer than Croesus. Some of the disadvantaged remain resolutely upbeat whilst others slide into the slough of despond.

He is on the right of the picture here and if you think you know his story, share it with me.

There are growing numbers of South Asians in Hong Kong. They come from Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka……… wherever you can think of. Most are trying hard to integrate well and some are second generation, born here and with a degree of celebrity like Kiu Bo Bo. Many are hard working but there is a sense of apprehension about them at times. They are often maligned. Perhaps a typical ethnic minority or as one HK Legco (Legislative Council) member wrote on her banner recently ‘ethic minorities‘. Here is one guy running his food outlet in Sai Kung.

I’m up for a Rogan Josh any time 🙂

Finally, a typical street scene in Sai Kung. If there were a window it would be called window shopping but this is just an open front store.

These stores cater for those on lower incomes or simply people looking for a bargain.

Its a good place to live, Sai Kung. We’ve been here three years and have no desire to move. It is sufficiently rural to suit my needs without being so remote that you feel adrift from the mainstream, unless you choose. Now all we have to hope is that the “planners” don’t ruin it. I suspect they will and maybe in ten years time I will look as morose as the chestnut seller. If I’m spared.

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6 thoughts on “Sai Kung Scenes

  1. These black and white shots are very nice. I just happen to like B&W if the photos are good and you never seem to produce anything that is not really good. Anyhow, back to the first scene. This is good re: the sad man is the first thing that caught my eye becasue he stands apart from his customers. I am an observer and as one of the aspects of my 35 year job was being able to read body language and facial expressions. These things most often tell one more about a person that anything they can say. But getting on with these photos. As a photographer you have learned very well how to observe and how to turn an ordinary scene into one that stands out.

    • Thank you for commenting Yvonne. I also like ‘people watching’ and to a degree that is what I enjoy about this sort of photography – you can observe, record and wonder. I learned B&W from my father in the 60s and 70s and digital has made it all so much easier, even though I do sometimes still shoot film. I also enjoy looking at photos of the past and I hope the vast treasure trove of contemporary photography will be properly curated and archived one day.

  2. Hey, I have a funny story about that grumpy old son of a bitch chestnut seller. Today my parents, my brother and my husband went to Sai Kung because it was a holiday. On the way home, we decided to pick up a bag of chestnuts. My husband, who is a gweilo and had never been to Sai Kung before was snapping photos on his iPhone all day, and was taking a photo of the chestnuts while my dad was purchasing a bag. Chestnut seller man told my husband “no, no” (don’t take photos), so he stopped. But the chestnut seller went and purposely stirred the wok of chestnuts so some of the flaming hot chestnuts exploded all over us and our clothes. When I started yelling at him for exploding the chestnuts on purpose, and he realized that we were customers—and the fact that I was drawing a crowd of people with my yelling—he went and blamed some people who were standing nearby… a family of brown folks who had nothing to do with the situation whatsoever. So not only is this dude grumpy, dour and passive-aggressive, he’s also a racist.

    • Thanks for the comment Isabel. Its quite sad. I guess the vendors get a bit fed up with tourists with cameras but its part of Sai Kung life. Uncle Mak never minds and is a great ambassador for the town – this guy is just plain hostile.

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