Last night in Hong Kong, grabbing some fuel for a late picnic and catching bus no20 towards a peak reputed to hold the most spectacular views of the city. Swarms of people, the aura of a place that has been photographed a billion times, funny enough you can avoid the thousand tripods if you just walk 50 meters to the right, like flocks of sheep, tourists stay together and don’t stray from the shopping lights. The view is indeed spectacular, feels almost fake, like living inside a video game, Blade runner comes again into mind a little fog and pages from Philip K. Dick’s books come alive. Climbing on hills to gaze the city at night. Some skyscrapers stubbornly protrude trying to beat this unofficial height game. You need to go higher, to transcend the man made in order to get a clear view and an undisruptive field for your thoughts. Only then the city becomes a sea and the unified concrete mass projects a liquidity if only as a deception of the fading forms through the distance. Cities from above, through airplanes, mountains, satellites, you need to resurface for air from time to time in order to dive inside again. Maybe in distant cycles like a whale but still necessary if you don’t want to drown.


Best way to wipe the sweat of a ride in a dragon’s back is to wet your nose inside a new unexplored sea. This happened to be the South Chinese Sea, in Shek-O beach, south east of Hong Kong island. Lack of anticipation for high temperatures and warm seas left our swimming suits moulding inside wardrobes. After hard bargains with an 80year old Chinese shopkeeper we managed to get some tattered second hand Hawaiian rip off trunks for 20 HongKongDollars. A friendly sign informs the unaccustomed laowai of the local fauna which is a little more poisonous, with elongated teeth and alluring blue rings, than what i am used to. Just avoid chatting with passing barracudas and god forbid don’t tickle that small innocent octopus, looks can be deceiving as you actually facing a tentacled serial killer (as always thought to provoke him you ll have to draw first). Water is strangely warm, the spell breaks as you enter and realise the transformation of idyllic green to a brownish tint. A barracudalless swim later, bodies stack in a fugitive double decker 8 time zones far from London, gazing emerging skyscrapers in the green scenery and minutes later you are back in a buzzing city center. A swim in early October, courtesy of Chinese bureaucracy and nomadic mentality. Slowly but steadily updates are finishing for Hong Kong, the bet is to reach present while still in China : P Read the rest of this entry »

Picture Hong Kong, with streaming rivers of people, flooding a skyscraper filled scenery, if you focus on the city center you loose the bigger picture. Urban areas are just a patch in an explosion of green, the rest of 50-70% that consists Hong Kong is plain rural wilderness, hills, forests, mountains and other high heel killers. Leaving weekend tourists to boil in the center we hopped on a bus and disappear in the southeast part of Hong Kong island. Our short stay allowed for small expeditions so i picked a small route with the most interesting name: “Dragon’s back trail”. Traversing hill slopes that with a loose imagination did resemble a dragon. Without much effort we managed to conquered the 284m peak! and agreed wholeheartedly to seal this glorious victory with a dive in the Chinese sea. (i am getting closer to the present, only a couple more posts about Hong Kong, ahh damn update lag). Read the rest of this entry »

Signs sing, pictograms whisper surreal stories, white noise of city is silently balanced through static visual poetry. Keep your eyes open, for large leash less dogs, germ spreading, priority octopuses, strange rules, English road names, escalator killjoys and urban Easter eggs. more photos here. Read the rest of this entry »

I haven’t seen so many foreigners in one place after leaving Europe, immigration office buzzes with motion like a peak hour beehive. Everybody needs a visa for some reason, blond stereotypical tourists, saturated expats, workers, permanent residents, you can only grasp small stories from the people right in front/behind you, in our case 2 rich kids that discuss with blatant apathy how they usually loose their dollars in casinos. The line moves slowly on Mondays. Upper floor in order, lines, tickets and a pallet of faces, submit your thick application folder and you are free to roam the Hong Kongese wilderness. Read the rest of this entry »

How did these survived company meetings, creative directors, a certain amount of eyes and brains to finally see the light of day is beyond my comprehension. To appreciate quality you need bad quality so there we go, maybe this is the sole purpose of their existence. The happy old lady advertising vibrators is quite interesting from the sociological point of view, there are still some sexual taboos in China although Honk Kong is a special case. The hairy nose ad is even creepier in its tv version were protruding hair from noses ears and other body parts fill the screen. The concept for the interactive outdoor poster is that when you pull the hair you get sound feedback through a prerecorded voice, it attracted the attention of the kid who persistently kept pulling the hair again and again argkhhh… For the life of me i can’t remember what was the product that was advertised, something completely irrelevant i am sure. Read the rest of this entry »

7:00 AM and the basketball court is filled with tai chi training grandparents. I have huge respect for elder people that opt to do things and stay active instead of rotting away inside their home, seeing them full of energy performing their moves in parks, squares and rivers you get a nice feeling for the future, is not only the mental attitude but the knowledge that your body has huge amounts of perseverance and can last for a long time if you take good care of it. On the other hand you have young people who can barely move their legs, let alone run or do anything physical rotting from the inside out. Let’s see who lasts longer… Read the rest of this entry »

In the heart of Hong Kong the contrast strikes you even more, a spider web fabric covering newly erected skyscrapers is supported with a mesh of bamboo scaffolding. Using bamboo in Asia is as common as eating rice, magnificent material with thousand uses. Classified as grass with properties of hardwood, strength of metal and growth rate like nothing else. I wonder if it could be possible to plant it in Europe. It sure would be nice to grow a bicycle frame out of bamboo. Tender and delicious when young you are left wandering if anybody could eat their scaffolding back in the west. Read the rest of this entry »


October 5, 2010

Getting on double decker British buses, top floor full of foreigners, a strange feeling like late returns to west London with N207. Steep roads traversing hills like SF scenery, Paying everything with dollars, skyscrapers from the heart of Manhattan, sea dividing the island, Kowloon and new territories, Vietnamese, Thai, Japanese, every kind of food, Indian street hustlers, Greek conference attendants, millionaires in their yachts, fried tofu and fish balls, ads from the weirdest subconscious of human existense, pet hairdressers and the jungle just one step away… Welcome to the culture blender. Read the rest of this entry »

Disembarking from the taxi you get the first epileptic convulsion the moment you start to look around, visual chaos, you need time to adjust much in the same way that your eyes have trouble seeing after the switch between pitch black and sunlight. Is just too darn hard to focus on anything, not only from the sheer amount of static or animated visual chaos in the form of advertisements, signs, screens, symbols and everything graphical but also from the motion of the city, this steady stream of living masses that circulate like blood in the streets of Hong Kong. Similar to any major metropolis but in a slightly more fast forward notion. Escalators in metro are actually faster giving the effect of beaming people to the surface. Above all the totality that strikes you as in every major international city, the bigger the population the more invisible you become. Swarms of foreigners eliminate the rock star effect of mainland China. You don’t realise the attention until it disappears. Hong Kong doesn’t feel like China, it is a mongrel blend of east and west, a hybrid that through the night reminds you of dystopic scenes from Blade runner or Transmetropolitan. Eyes start focusing again, slowly… Read the rest of this entry »