Sustainable Future, Hong Kong Tales
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Fanny LEE: Memories of South Horizons

Fanny LEE Koon Fun

39 years old

Works in NGO

Resident of South Horizon for two decades

 

“My family moved to Chi Fu Fa Yuen when I was still a toddler.  I went to school in the Southern District, and our family moved to South Horizons in my last year of secondary school.  I have been living in the same residential neighbourhood for two decades.  Southern District is a calm and relaxing place.  Unlike Wan Chai and Tsuen Wan, you don’t normally meet people who go to the Southern District for shopping.  Southern District means home.

I miss the days in Chi Fu: the shopping centre, the roller skating rink and swimming pool.  There was also a park where my friends and I played hide and seek.  We’d be thrilled by the opening of a 7-Eleven.  Chi Fu was quite convenient in the 1970s and 80s.  During my secondary school years in Aberdeen, I usually went to Shek Pai Wan Market for lunch.  I also frequented a family-store that sold deep fried fish ball.  We also visited Joseph Uniform in Wong Chuk Hang.  Occasionally, we went to the pool in Wong Chuk Hang for swimming.  These fragmented pieces add up into my childhood memory. 

South Horizons is a convenient neighbourhood.  South Horizons offers the best of both worlds; you could shop for groceries, hike along the landscape, or take a short walk on the promenade.  My husband and I have moved to Tseung Kwan O briefly, but we decided South Horizons is a much better place for our daughter.  All you have in Tseung Kwan O are MTR and automobiles.  As soon as we moved back, I felt settled.  South Horizons is a good place for a housewife.  There are kindergartens and primary schools that I know and trust.  The wet market is only a five-minute walk from home.  If we want to travel downtown, Causeway Bay is twenty minutes away as long as traffic in Aberdeen Tunnel is smooth.  On Saturdays, I can take my daughter to the Peak. 

The changes to the Southern District are gradual but persistent like boiling frog.  This is similar to Shek Tong Tsui, where an unimpressive alley could be filled with fancy restaurants and cafes within two years.  I’m not against change, but does our District have other choices?  A while back, I joined the campaign against developers turning our shopping centre into an outlet for designer labels.  Changes of this kind disrupt our community.  When all we have are chain stores, monopoly will replace diversity and choice.  It is disappointing that some people see nothing but short-term gains, turning a blind eye to the changes in our community. 

More and more tourists visit the Southern District.  I appreciate the idea of introducing Hong Kong’s traditional communities to tourists, but South Horizons is also somewhere I call home. When tourists flood into the area, the noise and competition for transport become a nuisance.  Sometimes I worry that this would become another Tai Koo Shing.”


Issue: #027 - 25 July 2016
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