Another Tiring Week

Our city is going though another Sunday night of violent protests as I’m writing this post. I’m seriously tired and have been even more quiet than usual this week.

Mon – Met up with my calligraphy classmates to visit a newly opened baking studio. It was found and run by one of my classmates goddaughter. It’s a tough business and I offered to help 3D print a cookie cutter. Should be a fun experiment.

Tue – Calligraphy class, still missing my 91-yr-old classmate. My teacher suggested to move our weekly class to Ma On Shan starting Oct. to minimize the traveling effort for my classmate, but he seemed reluctant to accept our kind offer.

Wed – Violent clash broke out at a shopping mall in the evening. A guy with his 3 kids was singing the national anthem of China while intimidating the crowd by taking closeup videos of the pro-democracy crowd. He was yelled, bullied, and beaten with blood shredding at the corner of his eye. Found out he was a good friend of mine back in high school in HK.

Thu – Watched the near hour long video incident in the morning and my mood seemed to have fallen down a cliff. Went to volunteer for another week to make lanterns with elderly, but that barely lifted up my spirit. Had dinner with family, it was an unusually quiet one as we tried to avoid sensitive political topics that may trigger arguments again (our last dinner together a few weeks back ended on an unhappy note due to different political views).

Fri – Mid-Autumn, had dinner at home with my parents. Slept early and peacefully.

Sat – Began my weekend reading of the long and difficult to understand book. Met up with the girl-I-like for coffee and gelato in the afternoon.

Sun – Joined the early Sunday Service. Managed to finish reading the long and difficult to understand book.

Sketch… (early) Sunday Service

A Long Week

The past week was a long tiring one. I didn’t have much planned other than promising to serve at a relatively big fellowship event yesterday.

Tue – Found out my 91-yr-old classmate was serious about stopping to join our weekly calligraphy class due to deteriorating health conditions. Met and caught up with an old friend at PMQ after lunch before joining a strike at Government Headquarters. A friend joined me and I had dinner with him and his wife afterwards.

Wed – Our city’s CE finally gave in and announced the withdrawal of the controversial extradition bill after a summer of protests, but it was too little too late.

Thur – Joined my friend at PMQ to craft with elderly in the morning. Visited a Chinese calligraphy/painting exhibition recommended by my 91-yr-old classmate in the afternoon. Finally began the preparation work for Sat. fellowship event.

Fri – A friend came over to the studio after work to help me move a newly acquired laser cutter. Thanked him with an early dinner.

Sat – Had lunch with the friend again, he insisted on paying this time around. We went to pick up some mooncakes bought from my friend who cannot see but yet shines brightly with God’s amazing grace. Went to church early to help prepare and serve at my fellowship event. The event lasted till around 9pm.

Sun (today) – Went to the early Sunday service with my brother-in-law. Got home early before noon and was too exhausted to go out. Spent the day catching up on news, napping, and reading a long and somewhat boring book.

Sketch… (early) Sunday Service

Weekend Art Retreat

Had the privilege to spend another wonderful weekend at the beautiful WWF Island House making art and meeting new and old friends. It was a super quiet weekend with very little visitors, likely due to our city’s ongoing protests and bad weather. It was somewhat expected and I wasn’t disappointed whatsoever. Every time I walked into the secluded Island House, it felt like re-experiencing my Hawaiian vacation back in 2013 when I attended my friend’s wedding on the Big Island. For me, making art and sharing occasional friendly conversations with visitors at the Island House was more of a vacation than work.

Slightly disappointed was that the girl-I-like couldn’t make it to the Event last minute. I was so hoping to show her around the beautiful environment and experience a little bit of Hawaii together in HK.

Our city experienced another weekend of violent clashes between protesters and police. Fires were started, blue solutions were sprayed, and real guns were shot. Almost the entire subway line was stopped at one point. It was a dramatic contrast to my quiet weekend art retreat.

Weekend Events

Met up with the girl-I-like yesterday after our dinner a couple of weeks ago. Originally planned to see an exhibition together at the Expo near the airport, but changed plans last minute after hearing about possible protests in that area. We went to visit The Mills in Tsuen Wan instead, first time there for the both of us. I think both she and I find the stuff there pretty interesting, and there was some added nostalgic value for me because my parents used to work in that neighborhood and I would sometimes tag along to their factories when I was a kid.

After visiting The Mills, she wanted to visit a craft market in Central and I overheard her on the phone about meeting a friend there. I thought she would just dish me and go meet up with her friend. But I asked rather shyly if I could join them because the MTR station to my studio was closed due to protest and I was actually a bit interested in visiting the craft market too. Turns out she was actually meeting a common friend and her husband. Could I consider this a double date? A breakthrough in our relationship? Anyway, I enjoyed and cherished every minute that evening amidst the violent clashes happening near my studio in Kowloon Bay.

Went to see the exhibition alone at the Airport Expo today because it was the last day. I was hoping to get some inspiration from the exhibition to start an art project relating the lingering protests in our city, but the exhibition was a little disappointing. In retrospect, it was a good idea that we switched plans yesterday.

Violent clashes broke out again today, this time in Tsuen Wan and Kwai Fong. I was thinking we may see less of that after last week’s 1.7-million strong peaceful protest, and after a relatively peaceful protest in Yuen Long on Wed., and after an uplifting Hong Kong Way campaign on Fri. evening. I couldn’t be more wrong.

Our city’s Chief Executive, Carrie Lam, released a public note yesterday urging Hongkongers to rest and initiate dialogues in search of common grounds. I honestly would love to rest too, but a dialogue requires communication in both ways. The protesters have unequivocally voiced out their 5 petitions since June, where’s your response Carrie Lam? Do you hear the people sing?

Sketch… (early) Sunday Service

Heung Gong Yan… Ga Yau!!

Joined the city’s protest for the fourth time this summer. It was a rainy day, but it didn’t stop 1.7 million Hongkongers from coming out to voice out their disapproval of our government and its police force.

On top of the 5 somewhat consistent petitions, the main theme for today’s rally was against police brutality. Since the city’s protests started in early June, we had witnessed too many unjustified violence excercised by HK Police Force (e.g. colluding with triads, deploying thousands of tear gas canisters, firing pepper guns at close range, pushing protesters down escalators…). The HKPF’s brutality was often followed by stupid explanations and was highly praised by the government.

I believe there’s just too much injustice being built up in our city. Today I was determined more than before to join the millions of Hongkongers to rally against Injustice and in support of Freedom. Carrie Lam, do you hear the people sing?

He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. (Micah 6:8)

Sketch… Sunday Service

Week of Meetups

In midst of the lingering and worrisome protests that are happening everywhere in our city on a nearly daily basis, I managed to keep my social life intact and engaged in many rare and satisfying meetups this week…

It started off with a buffet lunch to celebrate my calligraphy classmate’s 91st bday on Tuesday! I drew him an ink portrait and had everyone signed during class. He was really happy that day, ate a lot of food, and even tricked us by paying the entire bill himself while getting a cup of coffee!

Then came the long awaited date with the girl-I-like on Thur. evening. She dressed up beautifully and had makeup on. I, on the other hand, did put on my jeans and shoes, an improvement already from my usual attire of shorts and flip flops. It’s been months (or even a year?) since I last met up with her, but it didn’t take too long for us to catch up and start engaging in more genuine conversations. I’m not much of a foodie, but I really enjoy sharing a meal with her and seeing her satisfying smile. Asked her out to see an exhibition together later this month. May God continue to bless this relationship.

The week ended with 2 more separate mini reunions, one with my primary school classmates and the other with my university fellowship, and both meetups happened because of friends visiting from US. The fellowship friend said he hasn’t been back to HK for 11 years and was transiting here only briefly for a day from a business trip. Glad we made it to meet up with him late last night in TST in midst of chaotic protests in the district.

As the protests in our city becomes ever more chaotic, I seem to yearn for closer relationships and cherish the time more when I’m with family and friends. At the same time, I also seem to be more easily irritated by loud noises and bickering. Honestly, I’m getting more and more tired of following the protest news and trying to sieve rights from wrongs. Can we take a break and get a little breather?