Since landing at HK International I have been observing the locals closely and attempting to impersonate and pass myself off as ‘one of them’; born and bred in HK. Born in HK but bred in UK I have found it Mission Impossible.
They spot me a mile away. Apparently it is the clothes I wear. Locals go for the casual look: T shirt and shorts and flip flops. No cleavage shown but showing off shapely legs are ok.
My movements far too unhurried and not purposeful. Hesitation in what to purchase. Taking far too long to exit the taxi and grab shopping. Having time to chat, interview locals on their situation and views.
My Cantonese which came as a shock. After all it is my mother tongue and I never realised my version wasn’t ‘ the Queen’s English’. I haven’t quite got the hang of the local slang yet; Hong Kongers are fond of abbreviating everything. Any extra word is deemed redundant; another split second lost to earning the illusive $ .
And across the border is the same One sales assistant informed me that ‘they’ come rough and ready, her words not mine and I am much more ‘civilised’ and ‘gentle’. I’ll settle for that.
But I shall continue pursuing my mission. Never say never. Today I will devote to walking faster in order to keep up with the flow of human traffic in the MTR and not get in the way. By the way I am really impressed with how Hong Kongers fit into small gaps and spaces like flowing water. It is an automatic reaction like breathing. They are programmed to protect their own personal space amongst the crowd by forming an invisible bubble. Hence the obsession with their mobiles.