Sustainable Future, Hong Kong Tales
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A Small Haven

Cherry LAU Pik Yuk, aged 23, has been living in Pak Sha Lau of Yue Kwong Chuen since she was born.  She is living with her parents, younger brother, and two little hamsters.  She works at a pet shop in Causeway Bay.

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The first thing that Cherry does upon returning home, each day, is to feed her little hamsters.  At first the hamsters had no name.  But she soon came to refer to the male as “little uncle” and the female as “little sister”.  They live in two small cages placed on the windowsill next to the front door.  Next to the cages is a water tank where she used to raise tortoises and goldfish.

Cherry’s house is also arranged as a square.  She lives in Pak Sha Lau of Yue Kwong Chuen with her parents and younger brother.  In its original layout, the 300-square feet flat was only divided into a common area, a kitchen and toilet.  The Lau family further partitioned the common area into two rooms – one for the parents with a double bed, and one for the siblings with a bunk bed.

In fact, the flat used to house even more family members.  Before Cherry graduated in primary school, she used to sleep with her grandma on the sofa bed in the living room.  Grandfather had his own room, while Cherry’s parents and brother slept in the other room.  It was not until Cherry began attending secondary school that her grandparents moved out to Ching Hoy Lau.  For the first time in her life, Cherry had her own bed.  “Although I don’t have my own room, we each had a space to ourselves.  Mom had her computer desk, my younger brother had his working desk, and dad had the dining table.  I don’t have my own desk but I have two wardrobes! I’m the one with the most clothes in my family!” Cherry added, “We have a close-knit family even though our house is not that big”.

Cherry used to part time at McDonald’s.  She uses her salary to purchase an annual pass to the Ocean Park, so that she could go there after school.  “I bought an annual pass for three consecutive years! This is a great collective memory for us, Southern residents.  I guess nearly half of our schoolmates bought a pass back then.  It was a great bargain as they only charged full-time students HK$500 per year!”  As someone who likes sports, Cherry likes running to the South Horizons, or swimming and sunbathing with her friends in Repulse Bay. 

Occasionally, Cherry also likes to pose as a model for photography enthusiasts.  After roaming the streets and alleys of different districts, she concludes that Yue Kwong Chuen is a great place for photos.  The entire housing estate is built upon a hill, and each of the five blocks has its unique structure and design.  “This is hard to find in other districts and conveys a pleasant nostalgic vibe! Pak Sha Lau and Shun Fung Lau have their unique staircases, whereas the other three blocks have extended corridors.  As for good lighting…well it presents almost everywhere in our estate.”

 

Chloe Lai
Chloe Lai
Issue: #041 - 1 February 2021
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