Saturday, December 10, 2016

Politics, space and nature in Hong Kong's country parks

Hikers give their reactions to a political slogan
that's become a familiar sight in Hong Kong's country parks

Something I've got to wondering in the wake of CY Leung announcing yesterday that he won't be seeking a second term as Hong Kong's Chief Executive: how long will it take for all the "CY ha toi (step down)" and "D7689" graffiti that have been spray painted, etched, written, etc. in various -- perhaps all -- of Hong Kong's country parks to fade away?  Also, how long will it be before they get replaced by anti-Regina Ip "R. IP"s all about the Hong Kong countryside by politically minded hikers?  

A joke I've heard at least one fellow hiker tell is that the reason why Leung Chun Ying seems so keen to develop Hong Kong's country parks is that he wants to minimize the chances people have of seeing these testaments to his unpopularity.  More seriously though, his non-appreciation of these natural treasures being the Big Lychee's green lungs and a communal open space that's probably the only opportunity for many Hong Kongers living in microflats and high density residences to be able to experience as well as enjoy being out in wide spaces says quite a lot about his unsuitability to rule and lack of understanding and empathy for the lot of regular folks here.

On a more positive note: Hiking in Hong Kong has increased my knowledge and appreciation of nature, and I remain in awe of Hong Kong's biodiversity and nature's resilience.  Regarding the latter: a few days ago, two friends and I went on my first hike from Tung Chung to Tai O since last April, when I found that a large swath of land along the way had been had been devastated by a hill fire.  Imagine my joy when, upon reaching that section of the hike route, I saw feet tall vegetation covering much of that bare -- albeit still blackened -- earth.  And I feel hopeful that the next time I go along that trail, there also will be abundant signs of fauna along with flora living in the area!     


peppylady (Dora) said...

We have set of larger rock and usual under some bridge. Usual that were people spray paint something. Although not sure of message or it vandalism.
Coffee is on

YTSL said...

Hi peppylady --

I used to think of grafitti in general as vandalism. But I've come to see some of it as art and others as valid gestures of political protest (even while still disliking those which are simply signatures and attempts to call attention to oneself).