Click above for poster gallery
Over the last five years, I've collected quite a number of
posters of most public events happening on Lamma. Besides all the public
posters for concerts and parties in restaurants, DickStock and Lamma Fun
Day, etc. gracing the walls around Yung Shue Wan, the more secretive,
email-only beach party posters stand out as some of the most creative and
innovative in design. Always new, always different, always colourful, often
crazy and even silly. They seem to represent and illustrate some of the
free-wheeling Lamma spirit very well where almost anything goes, as long as
you don't hurt anybody else. But judge for yourself,
If you've got a beach party poster that's missing in this
collection, especially earlier years, please email them to me and I'll add
them to this gallery, preserving them for posterity and for poster art
aficionados. I'm especially missing the S.O.S posters 1, 5, 6, 9 and
later. Free entry to the next beach party for every missing poster that's
being emailed to me! Um, err, there's no entry fee, but anyway,
Our Lamma Artist of the Month of
August 2007 is the mother of the youngest
artist I've ever featured in the Lamma-zine, 9-year-old
Christie Flowers. Katie Flowers' artwork spans an amazing range of
media and styles, much of it just absolutely beautiful to look at, but full
of layers of obvious and hidden meanings. The ecological message is very
powerful in some, while others are just pure aesthetics. But let's hear her
own words, as she's composed a few words below on the Lamma-zine's request.
She's also submitted a CD-ROM filled to the brim with her artworks and she
even stuck to the deadline! A really professional, marketing-savvy
artist/teacher and a pleasure to meet and promote with her cheerful, helpful
me if you are a Lamma-based artist (or know
one) who hasn't been featured for free in the Lamma-zine yet. See our
Galleries index for all the many former Lamma Artists of the Month.
Flowers - Lamma Artist (photos by Katie, CG-calligraphy by
artwork is inspired by the rhythms of the wonderful natural
environment around us and the sacred and secret forces at work in
the universe! I don't always plan what will emerge; artworks tend to
evolve out of experiments with materials and paint. Sometimes work
sprouts forth whilst experimenting at school... I will use
absolutely any materials that are handy, and probably over-decorate
most of it! I am about to start working on artworks which focus on
the wonders of the invisible life forms of the ocean...
Kids on Lamma know
me from the Earthkeeper days, weekly journeys out into a little
nature detection and wonder. This led me to take up studying an MA
Ed in Arts and Ecology in the USA. Still doing it! I write Earth
Poetry with Eric and Christie and fiddle with a camera from time to
time. Luckily, Hong Kong International School appreciates this
direction and I get to develop projects that use art to express
natural science as well as ecological and social issues.
Over the years in HK, I've ended up
teaching local students, community and women's groups, refugees,
artists and teachers on all sorts of visual arts and theatre
projects. I've worked with many schools, orphanages and remand homes
through the Youth Arts Festival, Kadoorie
farm, RTHK, and the World Wildlife fund. My favorite location in
which to teach art is outside!!!
Over the last few years I have
managed to work on Earth Art projects with all these groups, getting
people fired up about the lovely place that we live in, and a little
bit closer to knowing the Earth here in Hong Kong! I get to make art
as I teach as well sometimes.
If you would like
to know more about my 'Wild at Art' educational projects, please email
below for an art gallery of my artworks Lamma-Gung has put
P.S. Feedback from Katie about seeing her art gallery
for the very first time, the most enthusiastic I've ever received
from an Artist of the Month, published here with her permission:
are a rock star!!! I feel posh and proud!
Thanks to you
and my wee fella for making me actually take
photos of this work.
I really appreciate the quality of your
intro and your site.
I am prone to
hiding lights under bushels, so it's good to
have you shine the flashlight under my
Curiosity.............. have you come across
many poets?? would we have enough (4 or
5) for a poetry reading??
from Katie xxxxxxx
Another one of the always informative and often very entertaining press
releases from HK Electric just arrived in my constantly overflowing email
Touching Stories on importance of electricity.
Frankly, I wouldn't live on Lamma without a reliable power supply for my
aircon, Broadband, satellite TV and especially my electric toothbrush,
that's how spoilt rotten I am by our "99.999% since 1997"-reliable power
supply! Sometimes I'm amazed (and very grateful) about how we can combine
the comforts of big city living with all the many lifestyle advantages of
our quasi-rural Lamma environment. I always thought that electricity is just
part of our village infrastructure, vital for our creature comforts, but
kind of, you know, boring, like water, gas and sewage. I was oh-so-wrong and
had to change my mind after reading about this writing competition organised
by HK Electric, entered by over 23,000 participants:
"Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services, Mr. Ho Kwong-wai said a
reliable power supply is vital to livelihood and we should treasure it
"Some of the touching stories told how electricity helps foster family
relations, brings hope and love, and even saves lives. Some liken
electricity to an essence of life, like water, oxygen and sunshine.
"Topping the open category was the story of a mother of four who found
electricity indispensable in helping her keep close connection with her
loved ones in the United States.
"A Form Four student's account of the awakening experience related to
street lights and that we should treasure what we have in life, was best in
the student category."
Wow! That's all I can say to those stories. Let's all cheer and be cheerful
like all the cheery characters at the awards presentation ceremony below!
A short drama brings out the importance of electricity supply at the award
A group picture at the award presentation.
(photos and captions by
OK, I'll have to hurry now and pay my monthly bill for the
all-important electricity gratefully and on time. This daily placeblog would
die immediately if they'd ever switch off my electricity! A news blackout, a
cyber-darkness could befall Lamma!
But I'll expect that my sizable $884 tributary offering - a
humble sign of my devotion to my one and only provider of electric power -
will also "bring love and hope" to me, "foster family relations" and maybe
even trigger my "awakening experience" someday. After all, electricity is
essence of life, like water, oxygen and sunshine", isn't it?
Marcus Schütz - Republished with friendly permission from
his blog. This is his little contribution to promoting Lamma
as a popular tourist destination:
(Text and photo by Dr. Marcus)
Dear weekend visitor,
Welcome to Lamma Island!
Obviously you have heard of this charming little island not far
from Hong Kong. Weekend by weekend thousands of visitors make
their way over and it might be time to issue a short warning for
those who actually do not know about the dangers of the South
Actually, besides the exposure to
sun you are risking your health and the health of your loved
ones by far more than dehydration, biting insects and the
permanent danger of a snake attack. Since sharks have been seen
this year at Stanley, also swimming in unprotected bays can not
be recommended and even inside the shark net a jellyfish can
catch you and lead to large allergic reactions.
Be aware that mosquitoes may
carry Dengue Fever and Japanese Encephalitis which are known to
be most lethal to children. In case of a poisonous snake bite in
a remote area, please remember that there is very limited
medical and emergency services on the island and that a
helicopter rescue is very expensive and might not be covered by
your insurance. How will you pay for your mortgage for your cosy
flat in the 50th-something floor then? Risking all your dreams,
just for one weekend? No, don't do that!
Never mind, there are
alternatives. For example, before you step on the ferry pier
just stay in the ifc Shopping Mall. This is safe and perhaps you
like one of these National Geographic books in the remarkably
well-assorted Dymocks bookstore. Or how about a weekend in
Hong Kong's Disneyland? Now Mickey invites you to his
big summer party. You know that Mickey is actually very sad,
that so few of you came to visit him. Yes, I read it in the
business pages of the South China Morning Post - it must be
For the extra adventure, there
are also daily flights to Tokyo where you can dive into the
world of Hello Kitty. Isn't that really cute? There's even a
"Hello Kitty joins the MTR" display in the ifc Mall these days.
If you have been shopping hiking
equipment for the last 6 months to pass the Lamma Family Trail
with it, don't think it's wasted. This goes very well with your
National Geographic Magazine, even if it stays unused. And when
you see it, you will always remember how lucky you were that you
did not go to Lamma after all.
Stay alert, stay alive! Say "no"
to Outer Island weekend trips!
Picture this: Lamma-Gung on the ferry to town... grey,
rainy day... on the way to Dim Sum with his Chinese in-laws... window seat
close to the front, lower deck... watching the ocean waves splashing over
the ferry windows... listening to his little Bliss Clip (iPod Shuffle)...
playing with his favourite gadget, a Nikon D80, pointing it out of the
window, experimenting to get some wave action shots...
These are a few of the results, after just a tiny little bit of
Photoshopping by pushing the colour saturation of the photos:
The Lamma.com.hk forums are always looking for more moderators. Take over a
dormant forum or start up your own! It's not much of a time commitment, more
a kind of supervisor who has a look at the new messages occasionally and
starts a new discussion topic in his/her forum occasionally. You'd also be
keeping a bit of order if discussions get too heated and (very rarely)
degenerate into personal attacks and name calling, by simply moving those
messages without comment into the members-only Fight Club forum. Being a
moderator is pretty simple and requires no real computer expertise, besides
basic knowledge about how to get around on the Internet.
A few words about the optional moderator dress code:
As an official moderator, you'll
be allowed to commit the ultimate fashion faux-pas on Lamma:
wearing socks &
sandals! Senior moderator Alan and I have admitted to it, so we made it a
fashion choice for moderators, permitted but not required attire. You can
dress any way you like, even nude on High Street is OK on Lamma in general, but
as a moderator you're
encouraged to wear socks when you wear sandals! That's the sign how we
moderators recognise each other on High Street, our own little cliquish
BE PROUD to wear socks & sandals, as it is a sign of being a respected forum
moderator, a high honour reserved for those selected few dedicating some of
their time to supervise a sometimes unruly forum and answer the questions
from Lamma Newbies, helping them to settle into our community!
So watch out, when you see somebody strolling comfortably - socks & sandals
are very cozy and comfortable! - down High Street, it might be a moderator of
or it could be a naughty impostor! We'll hunt them down, turn them upside
down and confiscate their socks or, alternatively, press, eh, promote them into (voluntary, of course)
service as new moderators! Beware, you unauthorised socks & sandals wearers
out there, we're comin' ta get ya!
(Photos above rom
The Daily Transcript's "Sandals with Socks Edition")
Deli Lamma Lan Kwai Fong has been hosting a School's Out!
party by the gazillions of British Council English teachers living on our
Island of the Ghost Teachers. A bit late, though, as school's starting again
Saheb, Prafull's son and Lamma Football Club Captain, had his birthday party
there as well, turning
Sweet 17 tomorrow, Sunday, Aug 26. The proud dad shot a number of photos and
entrusted me with his SD memory card, to pick and photo-edit the best photos
for the Lamma-zine. Looking at the photos, it's not always easy to
differentiate between Saheb's classmates
and friends and the teachers.
It certainly looks like the
Deli Lamma Lan Kwai Fong has become a really happening
meeting and partying place, not just for the young, pretty and successful
set, but also people
of all ages out for some fun and great times with their friends, colleagues
(or classmates). Try them for yourself one of these days for a highly
$70 set lunch, group buffet or catering, or book them at tel.
2522 1292 for your
next private or company function.
Check out their
full menu and
P.S. Deli Lamma is a fine Lamma-zine advertiser and loyal supporter
of this site.
There's a heated debate raging in our forum right now. New
member "Mary" launched a massive attack on Lamma Island residents,
"Welcome' to Lamma! A warning to would-be residents!". She simply
copied the rant from an English teacher forum (ESL
Cafe) in the hope of provoking controversy. It worked all too well.
Here are some quotes pulled from her posted message:
"... a hell-hole of a place to 'live'."
"... peculiar brand of ex-pat Bohemian wannabes."
"... ex-pat population that is clique and closed-shop to an extreme."
"... attacks on humans by rabid hounds are common and dog shit is quite
"... residents of Lamma are not serious, they are whoring alcoholics."
The title of this Lamma-zine story came from a
typically eloquent and detailed response by Spinoza1112, remarking
that "Lamma chaps seem for the most part decent sorts."
Mary's massively misanthropic message obviously
caused a typhoon of controversy as almost everybody
felt insulted or offended in some way. I found
it hilarious personally, as the over-the-top rant was so
full of simple lies and untruths, ancient clichés, easy-to-disprove
mistakes, total distortions and extreme exaggerations.
It was well-written, obviously by a (probably male) English
teacher and makes a few interesting points, describing the ancient,
pre-Handover clichés of "hippie island" which have been hounding and
smearing Lamma's reputation for so long.
Well, "Mary" got the feedback s/he craved by stirring the pot
in the forum aggravating us Lammaites with all these accusations. Why else
would she have posted this in a Lamma forum instead of the Discovery Bay
forum or an HK expat website where it might have been greeted with mirth,
sneers and even tacit approval? We should be glad and thankful that she
didn't send her rant to HK Magazine instead. They might publish it almost
without edits, always being eager to slag off Lamma residents...
Let the discussion continue, we can take silly attacks like
that and fight back with facts and good arguments instead of mud-slinging,
can we? Check it out yourself, the most controversial forum topic in
quite some time:
Welcome to Lamma! A warning to would-be residents!
Left to right: Mark, Kevin, James, Barbara, Ching-ching,
all in Lamma Northern School Primary 4 class.
School's out for summer!
(all photos courtesy of TVB)
RTHK produced a half-hour show, aired last Tuesday, Aug 21, 7-7:30pm, on TVB
Home, exclusively about Lamma children born in 1997, attending the Lamma
Northern School's 4th grade.
This great documentary featured their life in and out of school, playing and
exploring all over the island. Many of them were interviewed about life on
Lamma, their friends, their problems, their hopes and dreams for the future.
In Chinese only, but this was definitely one of the best TV shows about
Lamma I've ever seen, promoting Lamma as a wonderful place for families with
children. Congrats to Radio Television HK, another fine reason to preserve
public broadcasting in HK!
See the show for yourself on the RTHK website (Windows
Media Player format,
Real Player format),
read about it & see more photos (click them to enlarge)
Toddy: Still a Lamma Newbie, but after this initiation rite
night below, I think that she's earned the right to be promoted
to Junior Lammaite, a status that usually takes at least one
year of living here:
Toddy's First Rave
1.00 am ...
It's Saturday night. As a reward for managing to
edit two paragraphs of an eighty-page document, I decide to
venture down to a local den of iniquity, the
Banyan Bay Café, for, oh, just one beer. Upon arrival I
am reminded by the town social convener about the PSB rave. I
have no plans to attend. I'm not even sure what a rave is. Is it
a party where people perm each other's hair? Queen Publican Cath
insists she has no interest, and even less time, for such
1.30 am … Queen Publican Cath closes her doors. She's been working
hard and is going straight home…
"but I'll meet you around the corner at the Waterfront for one
2.15 am …
Queen Publican Cath issues orders to Sumyungkiwi
about how to pack the beer with ice in plastic bags.
2.20 am … We're on the path to the beach. Sumyungkiwi carries a
heavy plastic bag in each hand.
2.30 am …
The comrades and I emerge from the nullah path onto
the road that fronts the beach. Pack leader Kiwi Mike announces
last call for bladder evacuation. Fearing creepy crawlers, Missy
Eggfoogoreng squats down dead in the middle of the cable road
for a final pee. Fearing the reflection of any ambient light on
my ample white ass, I opt for the stix.
We regroup, pass through the wooded hobbitty grove, and head for
the industrial bump and grind at the end of the beach.
As we approach ground zero, Kiwi Mike
hollers: "You can't show up with a big bloody umbrella like
that. They'll take you for a fucking square." Reacting like any
trailer park girl with a colonized subconscious, I throw it into
the scrub, and plan to pick it up on my way out.
The brave arrive at the rave …
2.31 am …
A significant number of the attendees are horizontal. A few are
chit-chatting in groups on the periphery. The rest are in
rhythmic spasm like Spinoza's avatar techno Tinkerhell.
Timid at first, we find our "spot", claim our turf and set up
our bag lady mini-bar. A toe inadvertently begins to tap, a head
to bob. You feel the jig coming on. Deep from the DJ's nether
regions, primordial rhythms emanate to grab your (colonized)
core, pulsing for liberation. Cath is a sea nymph dancing in
the waves. Sumyungkiwi's rockin' the house. Missies
Eggfoogoreng and Dimasumyungpoo are mesmerizing go-go girls
frolicking in laser beam light.
An hour later
we're drenched in sweat like we just came out of the sea. We've
reached a Dionysian crescendo that just won't stop. I
think the waves keep it coming. A Guido with a Frenchish accent
and a weird hat and a weird friend comes up to me on the dance
sand to announce, "Congrajulayshon, we hav decided dat you hav
won dee awahd for best dansa of da rave."
What do I win?" I ask, panting and dripping and reeking.
"Uh … un
spleef, and a danse wit mee," replies Jean-Francais.
"But, uh …
couldn't you have rigor mortis and win that award? Half the
fuckers are passed out."
He offers a
geeky smile. I join the go-go girls.
long, two jokers dressed as cops show up. Bad idea. Their
arrival seriously kills the vibe. Oh, wait a second, they ARE
cops. They have a tête-à-tête
with the DJ for some time. Gentle as lambs, the ravers drop one
by one to the sand and sit obediently, murmuring quietly amongst
themselves as if waiting for their next set of instructions. A
natural leader finally emerges from the pack, proving that we're
not all a bunch of drunken invertebrates. Keren, clad in
micro-mini and bikini top, marches up to the DJ, pushes him
aside, decks some rockin' hip hop and cranks the volume. RAVE
ONNNNNN!!! The cops decide we're a harmless bunch of freak
shows and break into a YMCA line dance … NOT! They leave us
dancing for what seemed like a joyful eternity when my presence
was requested to block the view of Missy Dimasumyungpoo's bottom
while she urinated behind a log. Or was that Parksy having a
nap? As we stumbled back, I spotted a young lad in the sand
trying to take pictures of the rave with the power station in
the background. By this time I was soaked with sweat from head
to toe and my legs were considering going into spasm. I decided
I needed a break. I stumbled over and fell onto the sand beside
sorry, this is a national security matter. I can't permit
you to photograph our sensitive infrastructure. I'm going to
have to confiscate your pictures."
He looked at
me with a set of big Aryan eyes and burst out laughing. I think
perhaps I may have been slurring my words or crossing my eyes.
He described to me, in eurospeak, what an awesome setting the
power station was for a rave, out there on a beach in cornhole
nowhere, and that he was trying desperately to capture the vibe
in pictures. I told him he needed to send them into
Lamma-Gung, the jefe of Lamma.com.hk. "You gotta be sure and
email them to him. He'd love to put them up. He'll give you
photo credits and all. Lamma-Gung, ya… he's the guy who runs the
website. He's Swiss." I believe I may have inadvertently thrown
in a few comments I later realized he took as Germanophobic,
probably because they were.
Just then his
grinning friend sauntered over and started sprakenzing about
whether I spoke Deutsch. No, I didn't. Turns out Hanz and Franz
were from Berlin. Hanz had become a little curt at some point.
Now I knew why. Unaware that I had just been slagging the
Fatherland, friendly Franz sat down and started telling me that
I must have some of his drink, whatever it was that was in his
Red Bull can, which was not Red Bull. He had really big teeth.
He was smiling a lot, a happy lederhosen lad. I made him drink
some first, to make sure he wasn't trying to kill me. Then it
occurred to me he might be a suicidal German jihadi seeking
martyrdom, so I asked him to have Hanz drink some, which he
did. They weren't keeling over, and besides, Franz was just such
a happy go lucky, with big, shining, happy, white teeth. I
chugged the gschlecht in the can. Warm, yuckkky pseudo-fizz, and
very strong. Soon Franz and I were giggling and guffawing about
are yoo frum?"
Toddy: "If I
told you, I would have to kill you."
Toddy: "Bwahahahahaha, chuckle, snort.
do yoo liv here?"
here on assignment. That's all I can tell you. No more
questions, plumpen pferde." Snortle, buckle.
Hanz, vee shood all go schwimmen. But I haf no schwimmen
Hanz & Franz
& Toddy: "Bwahahahahaha teeheeeheee"
Hanz: "Oh no,
I guess vee hav to tek off our cloze und go schwimmen neked."
ya, schwimmen neked in da seee." chuckle, snort, guffaw!
knows what the klumpen lads were guffawing about, but in my head
was a Monty Pythonesque scene of two young lederhosenheads
goofily thinking they were succeeding in talking a woman into
skinny dipping with two kids who, apart from being complete
strangers, could in fact be … well, her kids. It eventually
dawned on them that my laughter was not jubilation at the
prospect of being naked with them in the flotsam --- that in
fact I was schplittin' a schide at the very thought. In
retrospect, I suppose that was a bit of a downer for the
rave-going toe heads.
myself reunited with my entourage of origin, and
eventually, God bless him, Franz and his big white choppers
showed up again with another damn Red Bull can of God knows
what. By this time I knew he was a good sport, so … I passed the
can to the publican. She was still breathing after partaking, so
I too had more of the Weltanschauung shooter.
to Franz that you don't ask someone to dance at a rave, you just
… dance. It's all about freedom, baby, and expression,
now Franz go danz and get your leder groove on. The truth was
that I had never been to a rave before and was talking complete
horseshit. But I remember the image of Franz hopping like a
solo sprocket, silhouetted against smokestacks and kaleidoscope
laser beam waves. Like the bodhisattva, he had finally grasped
the essence of rave.
5.30 am …
For my part, my job was done. The power station was safe,
Franz had found his mojo, and a hint of light was sneaking its
way into the sky. I retraced my steps to the nullah, never found
my sodding umbrella, and quickly hobbled my way home before
turning into a bat beside skeeter grave … thus went the tale of
Toddy's first rave.
Prof Red Star was also stopping by at the party that night and shot
the above photos. They're not quite up to his usual level of
photojournalistic professionalism, but they're very artsy ("accidental
artistry," the Prof calls it) and expressing the crazy mood and feel of
the night very well, I reckon. In his
Hong Kong Notebook photoblog, read all about how he doesn't
remember taking these photos and what he found on the beach the next
morning, making Lamma so special:
party was still up and pumping, with DJ Le Libertine riding the decks (see
below), a couple of lone dancers, a handful of party animals "relaxing" on
the beach or in the water and our very own sound guru keeping an
ever-professional eye on the equipment. But, and here's the point, just a
few yards away there was a woman fishing, a young couple celebrating Seven
Sisters Day, villagers out for a Sunday morning stroll and power cyclists
doing their thing in front of the stranded hulk of the SS Everbest (a victim
of Typhoon Pabuk)."
This news segment aired last Monday, Aug 21, around
7:20pm, on the regional Star World TV channel and could be seen in much of
Asia. It featured the so-called Lamma Forest in the hills above Pak Kok
Village, co-founded by the ABLE Charity (A Better Living Environment),
chaired by Bobsy, formerly Lamma's most famous hippie, before he moved to
Soho on HK Island and made a fine career co-founding and co-running
Cafe, the organic vegetarian cafe in Soho. But he still considers
the Lamma Forest the biggest achievement of his life so far and remains the
driving force of further growth and development.
I tagged along during the Lamma Forest filming last Friday, Aug 17 with
Associate Producer/Reporter Paschali Malamidis and a Star TV cameraman.
Below are my own best photos of the filming, an interesting
guided eco-tour that might someday be on the itinerary of some Lamma
visitors? The story has just become available on
Star TV's home page. The reporter and producer of the story,
Paschali Malamidis, emailed me afterwards:
"By the way, the title was chosen because it was snappy and because Bobsy
was depicted in the story so much there had to be a connection to him in the
title, otherwise the effect would've been odd. At no time did I intend to
give an impression that only one person was responsible for the forest.
Anyway in the story itself I was careful to specifically say 'Bobsy and like
minded friends' were responsible for the tree planting. I hope no one feels
On the way to the Lamma Forest, devastated by
a hill fire in the Fall of 1998.
Bobsy is seeking inspiration for the
interview. The reporter seems confident.
"Tell us about the forest, Bobsy. What, when,
The tree branch overhanging the road marks the start of the Lamma Forest.
It is located on the coastal road from Po Wah Yuen, just before reaching the
top of the last hill before descending into Pak Kok Village.
Tree-hugger and eco-hero?? -- Through the
prospering Lamma Forest -- Finding a bird's nest dropped on the ground and
returning it onto a branch.
Meditating on a rock - close to the Stone
Circle - with Puppy II.
The Yin & Yang symbol was painted by "Scottish Neil" who committed suicide by
hanging himself on Power Station Beach just a few years ago.
Many takes were needed for the short
introductory monologue of the reporter.
Media-savvy Bobsy aced his pretty long, unrehearsed monologue in a single
The Lammarina, Po Wah Yuen and Yung Shue Wan ferry pier in the background.
The self-made eco-guru and Puppy-II on
"Picnic Rock", a favourite picnic spot with one of the best views of
Northern Lamma Island.
This way to Pak Kok Village, Aberdeen,
Cyberport and HK Island's South side.
There's a lively discussion going on in our forum about this story. Somebody even
suggested a "Bobsy Day" on Lamma, inspired by our May pole dances! Maybe
it was just in jest, maybe not...
Bobsy on Star World News
P.S. One last little nugget, a
feedback on this story from senior moderator Alan:
"Well, that was amazing. To think that
before Bobsy started planting trees the island was completely barren.
Bobsy said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the
fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the
earth: and it was so.
And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind,
and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and
Bobsy saw that it was good.
And Bobsy saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.
And the evening and the morning were the sixth day."
Story removed on
Did you notice all the little lanterns hanging outside many
businesses on Main Street? Yes, the Chinese Ghost Month has just started.
Lamma-Por is advising me to stay indoors after dark, so no ghost can harm me
or even drag me into the most unpleasant hell of Chinese beliefs. I even got
a protective lantern for free from a friendly shopkeeper on Main Street (see
Yesterday, Aug 18, the local Yue Lan Festival has been celebrated all
evening and the huge God of Hell statue has been burnt. Prof Red Star was
out for the Taoist opening ceremony the day before with his new pocket-digicam
and a professional, fancy stereo sound recorder. He documented the procession
and the opening ceremony in
photo story in his blog.
Watch the slideshow and
listen to the music. Great multimedia
production values, Prof! More, more!
Wandering around Yung Shue Wan, do you wonder sometimes who keeps it all so
relatively clean? Yes, you've seen them around, the Lap Sap Ladies of the
Environmental Hygiene Dept.
These Ladies of all ages in their neat blue uniforms, Wellington rubber
boots, (sometimes veiled) Hakka-style straw hats, cute little backpacks,
rakes and oversized bamboo brooms can be seen in
small groups all over the village almost everyday, cleaning up all the
garbage (lap sap) and the minor and major messes we Lammaites
leave behind quite thoughtlessly. The Lap Sap Ladies are hard-working and doing a great job but
really seem to be under-appreciated by the residents. I had a great little encounter of the
close kind with them yesterday and we all came away from it smiling broadly.
I was doing a mid-day photo shoot, following a Star TV crew around doing an
interview with ex-Lammaite Bobsy in the Lamma Forest above Pak Kok Village
(see above, Bobsy "seeking inspiration" before his interview). More on
On the way to the Forest we encountered a cheerful group of four
Lap Sap Ladies. Noticing our film and video cameras, they got very
camera-shy immediately, preventing us from getting a picture. We were out for
hours in this oppressively humid heat, drinking just a little bottle of water
finishing, plus a little photographic side trip into the ruins of the
ancient Shek Li sanatorium, I walked back to Yung Shue Wan alone. Quite
suddenly, I experienced my first-ever
heat exhaustion episode on the way back up to Po Wah Yuen. I had to
rest for quite some time, sitting on the roadside, very exhausted,
hyperventilating, dizzy, lights flickering before my tired eyes.
The same group of four Lap Sap Ladies who had just cleaned up Dog Beach (Nga
Kau Wan) was coming up, also returning to the village.
Unlike everybody else who was just passing by without a word, the Ladies
stopped. They offered some friendly, comforting words and even left a piece from a
burning mosquito coil behind to fight off the hungry mozzies in that area.
They continued on their way up to Po Wah Yuen when they saw that I felt better.
Soon afterwards, I caught up with them on the two benches on top of Po Wah Yuen and sat down
with them, joining their little well-deserved pause.
This group of ever-cheerful colleagues and friends asked me a lot of friendly questions. With
my very broken and embarrassingly poor Cantonese, I was lost quickly and even sign language didn't
help much in our communication. So I called my Lo Por (wife), Lamma-Por, on my
mobile and handed it to a Lap Sap Lady to get their curious questions answered in Cantonese. They really got a good laugh out of this,
making a few new acquaintances.
We continued together down the hill into the
village, smiling and laughing (Ho Yeah!), me trying to answer even more of
their personal questions (beebee?). Learning from me that my Lo Por is Heung
Gong Yan (a born and bred Hong Konger), I'm Seui See Yan (Swiss) and where we
live in the village they became even friendlier.
So, something very positive came out of my little heat exhaustion episode.
Seeing these ladies around for years in the village, I had never spoken with
them before. But in the end, even after all these friendly chit-chatting, I
was STILL not allowed to take a close-up picture of these charming but
camera-shy Ladies. So, just one anonymous, backside picture this time, plus
more wonderful Lammemories... Next time you see them, please offer a smile,
a greeting or even some friendly words to these fine and very important
members of our village community!
P.S. This story generated more positive feedback than any other
recent story, for example:
toddy: "Nice piece about the Hakka ladies. Hopefully, you
are fully recovered from your heat exhaustion."
hi-fiber: "I liked the story about Lamma's women in blue. I
remember them as surprisingly cheerful, given their work."
My friend Wesley Chan from L.A., California, recently made a visit to Lamma
Island over this summer. He made a video based on Lamma Island.
Wesley is a film producer who graduated from UCSD and his group Wong Fu
Productions is very popular among the teenage Asian community across North
America (possibly the world... haha...)
Please help me recognize the work of my friend Wesley Chan on your Lamma
Island page. The Lamma Island video is one of the three shorts he shot in
HK. They are very artistic and unique.
This is the
Wong Fu Productions website (there are many shorts and music videos
available for viewing).
Dr. Marcus lives close to the drainage
channel works behind and besides the Green Cottage restaurant (see
Mar 22, 2007: Inside the New Drainage Channel). Working and writing at
home frequently (University Research, Scientific Publishing and Teaching),
he was seriously disturbed by the construction noise at all hours.
So he took action, fighting back with
hundreds of letters, emails and phone calls for over 5 months - keeping The
Lamma-zine informed throughout - and he finally succeeded! An amazing story
of single-person environmental activism and what it can achieve in HK... but
only if one is doggedly persistent and almost stubbornly determined. Here's
his wrap-up story, sent from his now much more peaceful home.
Dr. Marcus for a truly hard-fought victory! The Lamma-zine salutes you and
hopes you can become an example and teacher for other local wannabe
activists. We've got too few left on our island, after the dissolution of
almost all local environmental activism groups in the last few years.
Channel construction works in progress -
Temporary cover to avoid any locals falling in
The middle section of the channel under construction -
View from the Footbridge to Tai Peng towards the harbour -
Over 2 metres wide and deep (Photos by Lamma-Gung, click to enlarge)
Dr. Marcus Schuetz -
Lammaite and HKUST Lecturer (Math, HK Environmental Law and its
enforcement). It all started with an email on March 24:
Thank you for your replay.
Yes, the Yung Shue Long Valley
drainage going into the harbor is the one I refer to. We live
behind Main Street and are at this stage just a few meters from
The site management shows a nice
and understanding attitude but unfortunately has either no
control or no competence to minimize noise emission effectively.
As I can not judge on the necessity of the project and its
dimension, I take it as given that this has to happen (even I
have some doubts). However, that "everything is done (by the
contractor) to protect the environment" during this operation is
simply not true and even the (too
high) Hong Kong EPA Emission Levels are exceeded. Furthermore,
they are not willing to disclose which works will be done at
which time so one has a chance to arrange life around their
Personally, I have chosen Lamma
as a home because of its unique character and natural
environment. As I am doing University Research, Scientific
Publishing and Teaching I am also dependent on working from home
during daytime, which is now completely impossible due to the
It is good to hear that there is
an opposition within the residents against this kind of
projects. I was wondering what other residents are thinking and
had no time so far to approach them personally.
I am a Geoscientist by training
(PhD) and have been working in the Mining and Water Industry
myself many years ago - also as a Consultant in Public Inquiries
and legal cases. I actually know very well what I am talking
about. If I can be helpful somewhere to preserve the character
and environment of Lamma, please drop me a line.
finally ended happily with this conclusion below that Dr. Marcus
wrote exclusively yesterday, Aug 15, for the Lamma-zine:
...are carried out on Lamma and this means for
many residents that they have to bear with noise from
construction sites. Whether these works are real improvements
and necessary seems a frequent topic of discussion on the
island. However, letting this stand aside here and focus on
noise pollution only, the engaged parties in the Yung Shue Wan
drainage construction were extremely cooperative.
Noise from construction is limited by Hong Kong
law to 70 dbA at 10 meters from the source. Over a working day,
you will find that this is quite a high limit. Also in
comparison with for example German regulations (forgive me my
arrogance on that) the noise protection law in Hong Kong is
somewhat not competitive.
In case of a complaint, it is not easy at first
to understand the different roles. In this case the Drainage
Department engages a Civil Engineering Consulting Company which
is supervising the Contractor on the Drainage Department's
behalf. This means a complaint to the Drainage Department will
be forwarded directly to the Consultant, who will first assess
whether the operation is within legal boundaries. In this case,
it was. Still, over such long periods the Drainage Department
advised the Consultant, even within environmental regulations,
to minimize the impact on the community. In the given case, this
happened and the contractor proved to all parties that he is a
suitable partner for the Drainage Department as well as for the
community to carry out further works.
The concessions made by he contractor were to
maintain equipment, adapt working procedures to minimize noise,
set up noise barriers, not to use heavy equipment on Saturdays
and even to provide and pay for quiet accommodation during the
noisy periods. Noise monitoring and data logging was in place
over major periods. The consultant furthermore provided on a
weekly bases via e-mail information on the planned activities,
so that it was possible to arrange life a bit according to this.
Thinking back, I remember well that after a
battle of letters the management representatives of all parties
were sitting together in my home over a tea and in a friendly
atmosphere finding the best solution possible. Of course, this
might have been more a success of the acting people than of the
acting institutions - however, impressing. During the storm last
week, the new drainage proved how necessary it is to drain the
whole valley. So, for the residents around the area it was worth
bearing the inconveniences of its construction not to get
flooded in the future, I guess.
If anybody needs advice on details or technical
support like noise monitoring equipment, etc, you are welcome to
contact me via:
Some of us Lammaites are a cultured, well-read and sophisticated lot,
despite popular perceptions and clichés to the contrary. When we have an
argument with each other we usually don't resort to bashing each other's
heads in. Well, sometimes we do, but not too frequently and rarely before
Case in point, the self-unappointed cheerleader and unofficial mascot of
Lamma's ever-growing posse (flock? mob? gang?) of Ghost Teachers
(native-English-speaking gwailo/gwaipo teachers), Spinoza1211, having
a little heated argument with Lamma Newbie toddy about the departure
of Karl Rove, President Bush's brain.
Very maturely, they refrained from getting into a big, ugly brawl on the
ferry where they met inadvertently. No hair-pulling, giving wedgies and
waterboarding this time. Toddy (below right, looking surprised and amused at
Spinoza1211's self-portrait avatar) challenged him to a
"shitty political poetry duel!" in our forum! No, I ain't kiddin',
dear readers! Two Americans from opposite ends of the political spectrum
fighting it out in verse, it was a sight to behold and great fun to read.
The US presidential election campaigns really seem to be in full obnoxious
swing already, even on Lamma!
Check it out:
Lines on the Departure of Karl Rove, Evil Bush Vizier
After some heated exchanges, this argument ended like most arguments on
Lamma do, shaking hands, a pat on the back and having a (virtual) beer
together. Toddy graciously conceded the fight herself, after being simply
drowned out by pages of poetry spewing forth from Lamma's Awesome Poetry
Generator who has been accused repeatedly of "verbal diarrhea" by some
unkind forum readers.
Let's raise our mugs to Mr. Spinner
It is clear he is the winner.
I bit off more than I could chew
I am too dumb to play with you.
My shit verse does not beguile
The court poet of our isle.
Now I get it, now I see,
I'm threatened by complexity.
A simple commie-baiting sod
Is that stalking wanker Todd.
Even though you've won the fight,
I may still stalk you late at night.
And one day when we're on the ferry,
I'll say hello though your back is hairy.
Spinoza1211 graciously and humbly replied:
Please feel free
to introduce yourself
I'm a man of wealth and taste.
New forum member Tally Ho did not
agree and posted this rather rude poem:
oh praise to Toddy whose noble battle
tried to slay Spinozaz prattle
but incredibly he emerges
a little bruised but ego surges
quotes from Dylan but thinks Pam Ayres
so many words for which no one cares
pretentious? moi? he condescends
driving all us all around many bends
and on and on pollutes these pages unabated
until the day he is cremated or castrated
then RIP his unending verse and
farewell forever this forum's curse
In typical Lamma free speech style,
everybody's opinion is welcome, so make up your own mind by
checking out the forum...
"delighted" to take the ferry,
"excited by Hong Kong's
first and only wind power station, standing majestically at Tai Ling"
"thrilled by the huge 70,000-tonne coal vessel unloading"?
Most Lammaites are getting so familiar, comfortable and even blasé about our
island home. We see and experience it almost every day, so it stops being
new and exciting. It takes visitors and new arrivals to remind us sometimes
what a truly exceptional place we're blessed with living in.
voyage! Captain Wan takes delighted passengers on a special
learning cruise (Lamma II).
Case in point, about 200 local teenagers and their parents from the Hong
Kong Single Parents Association (HKSPA) were invited to the inaugural voyage
of a "Learning Cruise". They used one of HK Electric's regular ferries, the
ones that look like our regular white/blue HKKF ferries, but have names like
"Lamma II". These private ferries usually transport only power station
staff/visitors around Lamma and Hong Kong.
These teenagers on the cruise seemed very excited, most of them rarely
having taken a ferry before, unlike the almost daily trip for so many
Lammaites. The teenagers viewed Lamma with fresh eyes, often for the very
first time in their lives. So few of them had ever been to Lamma before.
Quoting from HK Electric's media release,
Teenagers on Learning Cruise [26 July 2007]:
Captain Wan introduces Lamma
Winds and renewable energy to
"The journey started from the HK Electric pier in Apleichau and covered
Lamma Island, Lantau Island, Tsing Yi, Kwai Chung before entering Victoria
Harbour to view its world famous night scene and the spectacular "Symphony
of Lights" show. A tour guide introduced major landmarks en route, making
the trip fun and educational.
"'Of course, we took the opportunity to introduce our power station and
Lamma Winds, teaching them about power generation, renewable energy,
energy-saving and environmental protection,' Captain Wan said.
Excited teenagers keenly join the quiz session to show what they
have learnt. (All photos & captions
courtesy of HK Electric)
"As the ferry sailed towards Lamma Winds, passengers were excited by Hong
Kong's first and only wind power station, standing majestically at Tai Ling.
"They were equally thrilled by the huge 70,000-tonne coal vessel
unloading at Lamma Power Station, eager to find out where the coal came from
and how it was used for generating electricity."
So what else is "new and exciting" in HK Electric's Lamma
Power Station? According to the just published
Interim Result Highlights for 2007 [9 Aug 2007]:
Firstly, HK Electric's management still seem very
worried about the outstanding renewal of the govt.'s Scheme of Control
next year. It has permitted them a comfortably high rate of return for
Group earnings up 7.3% to HK$2,66 billion for the first
half year, same in HK as last year, all earnings growth came from their
fast-growing international operations only.
Local electricity demand grew only 1.5%. Reliability of
electricity supply maintained at 99.999%. 1,890 employees.
Emission reductions at Lamma Power Station continued
with more flue desulphurisation and low nitrogen oxide burner upgrades.
Approx. 15% of electricity generated will come from
natural gas this year.
A site selection study for a 100MW offshore wind farm is
underway, maybe southwest of Lamma. An environmental assessment study
would be next.
Bishop - Tai Penguin, co-organiser of 1. Lamma Dragonboat
Mobile Signal in Tai Peng
Thought you'd like to know that for the first time
ever in all my years of living in Tai Peng Village I can use my
mobile phone at home! Previously there was never enough signal to
carry a phone conversation and often not enough for even an sms.
Many was the occasion when someone would send me an
sms and perhaps I wouldn't receive it until the next day when I
walked down to the village to catch the ferry! Or I'd have to walk
down the path and up over the farmer's field to find a strong enough
signal to simply send an sms!
Well all that is history, thanks to SmarTone-Vodafone.
They have just installed some new aerials up in Tai Peng,
which became operational at the beginning of August. I arrived back
from Bangkok on Wednesday and went into the first SmarTone-Vodafone
shop I could find and signed up for their service. I went on-line
last night. Consequently, this morning, I've been like a child with
a new toy - sending sms messages and calling my friends from every
room in the house. Yes, I have the dubious luxury of being able to
sit on the bog and send an sms message!
Over a period of years, I wrote numerous letters
complaining to my previous phone company - Orange, or '3', or
whatever they call themselves these days, a.k.a. Hutchison Telecom -
urging them to improve their service to Tai Peng, but to no avail. I
could never understand why I could go to the remotest parts of
Mainland China and be able to call anywhere in the world on my
mobile, yet couldn't even send an sms from my own home in 'Asia's
Hats off to a company that's actually delivered!
This note is more an expression of relief,
perhaps... disbelief... joy, even!... after so many years without a
proper service. I just feel than when a company does something in
our favour, and especially without a big song and dance (like 50
sales people clogging up the main street, for example), they deserve
a bit of credit. We're always so quick to slag people off these
days. And because SmarTone-Vodafone aren't making a big song and
dance about it, some people might not realise it's happened. So a
mention on the website will get the word around much more quickly,
and more people can benefit.
English Street, the thrice-weekly English newspaper of the
Chinese Economic Times (circulation 80,000+, targeted at students), asked me
for permission to republish my two Lamma-zine stories and pictures of Keren's two pet pigs,
Sumo & Peggy. They rewrote my stories and cutefyied the pictures (angle wings,
bubbles for the piggies, see title of this story!) You can view the good-looking result below, Sumo & Peggy's
first-ever cover story!
They credited me and Keren and promised to pay the grand total of HK$200
(Yes, $200, no typo, and it took some negotiation) which I'll split with my friend Keren, of course.
Let's hope that this cover story will further raise awareness about this
issue HK-wide and help to save the imminently endangered lives of these two
lovely and friendly pet pigs. Click below to read the full story:
Click story above to enlarge.
Click here for PDF file.
Plus my favourite shot used in the story above: a still happy
family being interviewed by ATV Home:
In the meantime, the
Environmental Protection Dept. officers have tracked down the secret hiding
spot of Sumo & Peggy! They could pounce any day now to take the pigs away for
execution, plus fining Keren an obscene amount. She can't afford a
lawyer and is looking for help of any kind, including potential new homes
for her beloved pigs.
Call Keren at 9010
7970 if you can assist in any way or would like to visit the pigs before
they'll have to leave Lamma soon, if the govt. doesn't change its mind which
often seems even more stubborn than a pig's.
Lamma visitor Hamish McKenzie has just published a travel
article about our island in the Asia Sentinel, titled
"Deranged, in a Lamma Sort of Way". He's spent a full month here and
the article is pretty insightful into our way of life here. Quote:
"...people speak of its chilled-out vibe, great food,
hiking and biking. That's all credit well deserved. To step off the Yung
Shue Wan ferry from Central is to be forcibly relaxed. The gentle breezes at
the pier carefully brush off the stresses of the city, the waterfront
seafood restaurants offer the best and freshest in the SAR and the many
accessible trails take walkers and cyclists to quaint villages, pretty
beaches, and summits that afford views of vast stretches of ocean and
skyscrapers on Hong Kong Island."
The article ends with "I listened, happily, and proceeded
to get derangedly drunk." Yup, Hamish seems to have spent much of his
one month on Lamma in our famous pubs doing his "writing research".
P.S. Hamish has just emailed me that, contrary to the note in the
article, he's still here and continuing his "research", eager to meet fellow
Meanwhile, Prof Red Star has been wondering about the
Lamma wall clock stuck permanently on Friday the 39th in his occasional but
very interesting blog - updated only once in a Blue Moon, it seems:
It's Friday the 39th every day at the Green Cottage
And last, but surely not least, a new edition of the fabulous
HK Copy News by Lamma Celebrity and standup comedian Daniel MomentEye:
"There's great big hoo-ha over stamps, lots of smutty innuendo and a new
way for the Hospital Authority to try and kill us.
"Plus with every episode a free Oiwan Lam... whatever that is."
Lamma-Gung And Lamma-Por have returned to HK from
Switzerland safe and sound. We arrived on Wednesday night, just ahead of
typhoon Pabuk. It forced us to wait for two hours to get our luggage from
the airport carousel due to the severe winds and rain. The next day,
Thursday, the typhoon had passed, all typhoon signals lowered.
But on Friday, Pabuk did a U-turn and returned to HK. It
stranded me in town for a night because I missed the last ferry when the signal
8 was surprisingly raised in mid-afternoon. I was stuck waiting for about ten minibuses
in the longest queue I've ever seen outside Queen Mary Hospital (my checkup
only). Almost no taxis around anymore or charging up to $50 exploitative
surcharges. I didn't even make it to the ferry pier at all, hearing about
the last ferry having left through the hopelessly clogged-up mobile phone
connections long before I could have reached the ferry pier at all.
Instead, I spent a pleasurable night with my Chinese
step-daughter's family and my half-year-old step-grandson on HK
Island, slept till 10am, invited them all for breakfast, went for an early
movie and returned home to Lamma refreshed and happy after lunch the next
Meanwhile, Prof Red Star, much quicker and savvier than me, managed
to get through the MTR crowds (see above, three photos by Prof Red Star),
catch the last tumultuous ferry, and joined the traditional
parties on Lamma!
Prof Red Star - extracted from his blog story:
Anyone for T?
... As for me, I managed to get
the last ferry of the afternoon to Lamma Island (4pm) and spent the journey
at the back out on the poop deck of the Sea Supreme, despite the best
efforts of the ferrymen, who had roped off the upstairs section (they were
forced to relent).
And what a journey it was . . . heavy, dark clouds and
vicious waves that sent a spray over the sides of the deck. It was
wonderful, great money's worth for HK$16. And , as you can see from the
photos below, visitor to the island, Terran Daily (in the green mack above),
had the ride of her life. Of course, not everyone was so into the excitement
if the occasional scream from inside the cabin was anything to go by as the
Supreme lurched and plummeted in the waves.
And you don't need to ask what happened when we finally arrived at Lamma
do you? You do? OK, well I'll tell you. When the 8 goes up it's party time.
Typhoon parties are a part of the culture here. In my case I popped into the
Spicy Island bar on Lamma's Main Street to do typhoon talk with the
regulars and its host Amar Singh (pictured above right).
In the meantime, another ship was wrecked on Lamma Island, not on Yung Shue
Wan beach but on the other side of the island, at Power Station Beach. So
far, six Alert Readers have informed me about this, even submitting photos and a
Many thanks to Moderator Alan, Dr Marcus, Brett the
Kinesiologist, Tavis, souldealer and Stine Baska! Check out the
"Gung Ho sampan on Yung Shue Wan beach" forum for more pictures and
Photo by Dr Marcus
Photo by Alan
Photos by Brett the Kinesiologist
This dramatic photo from souldealer shows a helicopter rescue of some of the
here for a YouTube video from Tavis.
Plus, the very last stranded-ship photo, just in from Stine Baska:
While we're talking about our ever-popular Power Station Beach, here's an
urgent and important note that HK Electric asked me to publish:
Electric - Main sponsor of the Lamma-zine:
recently that some youngsters have tried to come ashore on
our power station near Tai Wan To Beach and would like to
pass on the message below to the local community through your
web magazine. Grateful if you could help post this message from
HK Electric the soonest possible.
last few months there have been a few odd occasions when small
groups of youngsters have tried to come ashore on Lamma Power
Station near Tai Wan To beach (Power Station Beach). The
incidents have taken place during the evenings and on
weekends/public holidays. Our CCTV footage shows some teenage
boys and girls in swimming costumes running around between the
heavy machinery located on our pier facing the beach.
We would like
to draw your attention to the potential danger posed to anyone
inside the Power Station area, particularly to young people who
may not be aware of the risks posed to them by the all-round,
general, industrial environment.
You are kindly
requested to remind your children, who may well be at home for
the long summer holidays, not to go ashore on Lamma Power
Station, to prevent any unnecessary mishap from happening. Your
assistance is highly appreciated.
Wonton - Lamma Newbie and Lamma-zine "Staph Reporter"
(Photos of the "Gung Ho" sampan by Lamma-Gung. Note:
All unaccredited photos in the Lamma-zine have been shot by Lamma-Gung
and are copyrighted, to be used for non-commercial purposes only.)
Two tropical depressions in the region have made
for depressing weather since Wednesday evening. Even more
depressed is the guy who lost his sampan.
North Lammanese awoke Thursday morning to find a
strapping specimen of a sampan washed ashore on the beach at
Yung Shue Wan, down near the Bookworm Cafe. Dawn had barely
broken before awed and odd residents began emerging to examine
the new arrival. One beach dweller was rudely awakened by a
sampan-coveting crackpot on a cell phone calling into home base:
"Listen, there's been a sampan washed up on the beach in the
harbour. I'd like to report that I'm going to claim the sampan
if no one comes forward to claim said sampan... Yes, that's
right, if nobody claims the sampan that has run aground on Yung
She Wan Beach, I would like to claim the orphaned sampan as my
own." My sources, who suspect the craft may belong to some sorry
sod on Cheung Chau, tell me that wacked-out behaviour of this
nature continued sporadically throughout the day.
By the time I arrived on scene in the late
afternoon, a veritable folklore had already sprung up
surrounding the mysterious vessel. A group of very cute junglee
island children, four boys and one girl, were running amok
seeking entertainment. Imagine their glee when they stumbled
across the run-aground sampan. They climbed over the guard rail
and down the rocks to have a closer look. From my secret vantage
point, it resembled a scene out of Peter Pan and the Junglee
Dwarves. No sooner had they laid eyes on their find than did
their unspoiled, youthful imaginations set to spinning grand
yarns. "C'mon, let's get on!" exclaimed one of the lads. "We can
take it to England!"
"There must be a bucket of money on it!" shouted
another. "You know how people who have sampans always have
buckets of money?" he explained. "We should get on and find the
bucket of money!"
of the boys told the only girl, who was younger than her male
playmates, that there was most certainly a dead man on the boat.
Not one to be so easily taken for a sucker, the intrepid
creature climbed brazenly aboard, ahead of any of the boys, and
denounced the myth-maker's mendacity. "There's no dead man on
the sampan! There's no dead man on the sampan!" she shouted
triumphantly, while the gangly boys stayed safely on terra
One of the lads called his dad on his cell phone
to relay the news: "Dad, there's a sampan washed up on the
beach… Ya, a sampan, here, in Yung Shue Wan … It ran aground
last night during the storm."
Once the novelty wore off and the diminutive
islanders determined there were neither dead people nor buckets
of money on the sampan, they moved on in search of other
distractions. Not long passed before the afore-mentioned dad,
with sideburns, appeared on the scene to see it for himself. We
watched him and giggled as he looked at the sampan, shook his
head and laughed. After he left, another dad, no doubt alerted
to the excitement by Daddy-o Sideburns, showed up with his wee
buggers in tow.
All in all, a grand time was had by all with the
exception of Sampanless Sam, sitting forlornly somewhere on
Cheung Chau or God knows where, ruthlessly robbed of his rowboat
by the sampan-sucking cyclone.
P.S. Editor: The "Gung Ho" sampan is rumoured to belong to a
local dragon-boater who'll remain anonymous as he surely has
been teased and ridiculed mercilessly already by his mates.
Instead of resorting to Silly Season Stories, this Lamma-zine will be
taking a break. We'll be flying off to Switzerland from July 29 till Aug 9
for my mum's funeral.
This site will continue to run normally and the moderators will manage the
forums. I might have a look at the emails occasionally, or not...
I definitely won't
miss the heat and humidity of our HK summer this year...