Friday, May 05, 2006

Hong Kong: Bun Festival 2006

Here's a rant (his description, not mine) from Mick S:
Ended up going out for dinner with the beach bar people last night - 2nd night of the 3-day 'fast'. Follow us, we know where we can feed on meat. Kicked out of one place, we wandered seemingly aimlessly, arriving eventually at East Lake. We had our meal and while usually I recognise little of the food when eating with this group, the dishes served up where strangely familiar:

sweet&sour pork
fried squid
beef with onions
diced chicken with cashew nuts
fried fish pieces with beancurd
soy noodles with spring onions

Seems they were only willing to serve meat dishes to tourists and thus I had to act the token part. It was all nod, nod seeing as the owner and staff know me by name, if not always the same one.

So tradition is dead. And deserves to be. Setting aside the travesty of the resurrected bun scramble on the government run, steel frame tower 50 feet from the real towers, the one god burning you can't see for the nervous, fully clad firemen and the Tourist Asso' sponsored 2nd day march, the organisers this year decreed that ripping off the plastic wrappings on the China-made buns was too much trouble and that they be placed on the towers as they were. Result, crimson towers, glinting inappropriately in the TV lights.

The opera is pretty good though.

Off to an avoid-the-festival party soon. Think I'll assume the old bore persona, "assume" hah!, wistfully recalling old days when traditions were respected and all was right with the world. Won't mention the fact that the festival was moved off the beachfront in the late 60's to accommodate the tourist hordes. Some myths have to be protected.
Thanks, Mick S!

No comments: