HK Island, Luk Chau Island and
shot from a hill beyond the Pavilion above Lamma Winds
What better way to start a new week than fast
cardio-hiking up to the pavilion above the windturbine at 7am,
breaking through the tall brush, which was still dripping wet
from the night fog, clambering up a slippery hillside beyond the
pavilion and taking these pictures of the sunrise?
Well, I could have been sleeping in, but then I
wouldn't have gotten these shots well worth my early, wet hike.
I also couldn't have gotten takeaway congee and fried glass
noodles for Lamma-Por's breakfast. She had the good sense of
actually sleeping in, just rising when I returned home. Then we
watched the entire Oscar shows live together on this Monday morning,
while enjoying our Chinese breakfast.
Yes, Lamma is a really
great place for a relaxed, peaceful and healthy lifestyle.
Luk Chau, South Lamma, Ling Kok
Shan behind Sok Kwu Wan
North Lamma, seen from Mt.
Panorama (in front of Lamma Winds) -
"Lamma Forest" above Pak Kok Village (Click to enlarge
Jay Scott Kanes
Court Senior Pet Correspondent -
(Pictures and story by Jay Scott Kanes)
Who Lives? Who Dies?
How to Decide?
Dog Rescue Saves As Many As Possible
AP LEI CHAU, Hong Kong
- Saving a life usually means gaining a faithful friend.
By routinely saving lives, Lamma Island resident
Sally Andersen has won thousands of friends, most of
them with sensitive snouts and wagging tails.
"I do have a lot of
friends," Sally said. "I'm never lonely at home, despite
living with no other people."
As the founder and leader
Hong Kong Dog Rescue (HKDR) charity, Sally visits
government kennels (most often in Pok Fu Lam) about
twice a week to see the abandoned dogs incarcerated
there and facing euthanasia. She takes away those she
believes most deserve another chance and for whom HKDR
can find new homes.
"If I don't take them, no
one will," Sally said. "They'll be killed. No other
organization does this work."
Sally's noble mission
occupies her seven days a week, as does a huge problem.
How can she peer into canine eyes and decide who lives
and, essentially, who dies?
"It's very stressful, the
worst," Sally said. "I hate it. For me, it's very
difficult to look at a dog and know it could find a
home, but to leave it behind to die just because of how
many dogs we already have. I can't I'll try to take it
anyway because it deserves a chance."
Mind you, "some of it (the
decision-making) is obvious. The pugs and the little
ones I'll always take them. They're the easiest to
home. More people want them. Next it's golden retrievers
and any friendly dogs. I nearly always take puppies too,
unless they're really wild. The most difficult cases are
mongrels, especially the adults."
Signs of aggression rule
dogs out. "If a dog rushes at me, showing its teeth and
growling, I won't risk taking it. But if a dog is
scared, yet I can approach and touch it, then I'd like
to give it a chance."
When in doubt, Sally
returns. "At first, they could be stressed and
frightened. So I may leave the final decision for a
Although Sally wants to
save nearly every dog, that's impossible. Each year, the
Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD)
"puts down" 20,000-plus healthy dogs, each after four
days in custody. Angered by this peculiar
"conservation", activists often (futilely) urge the
government to limit homeless animals by spaying or
HKDR can handle only a few
hundred dogs at a time. So how does Sally ease the
stress of making life-and-death decisions? "I just have
to deal with it," she said. "If I don't, no dogs get
"Sometimes the stress
builds. Then maybe I'll lose my patience with people and
yell at them, especially if they say they want to
surrender dogs. People unlucky enough to call me at the
wrong time may get an earful."
To balance her emotions,
Sally focuses on the thousands of already-rescued dogs,
each a success story. "That's the whole reason for doing
this," she said. "There's a big satisfaction in
rehabilitating dogs, often bringing them back to health,
and finding them new homes."
As Sally spoke, a small,
fluffy dog named Sparky, a Pomeranian-cross, sat
quietly in her lap. Someone once surrendered him to the
government kennels for "being aggressive". In Sally's
company, he looks serene and gentle.
Another dog, Gertie,
partly Sharpei, watched from a doorway. "At the
government kennels, Gertie was very scared, but not
aggressive at all," Sally said. "I knew she wouldn't
find a home instantly, but thought that since she was
sweet-natured, we could work with her and she'd become
friendly. At first, she felt so terrified that she
filled a vet clinic with (stress-related) diarrhea.
That's why she's called Gertie for being Squirty
Gertie. But now she's lovely and sweet."
Both Sparky and Gertie look
to Sally and respond to her. Are most HKDR dogs so
grateful? "I think so," Sally said. "We can tell by how
they respond. When their behaviors and characters change
for the better, we know they're responding to a better
environment and how we treat them.
"As for the homed dogs,
sometimes years later they see me or volunteers who
cared for them at HKDR fundraising events, and they
remember. Each November we have a big event called Peak
to Fong. We walk from the Peak to Lan Kwai Fong and have
a big street-party there. Hundreds of people who have
adopted HKDR dogs bring their pets. Many dogs recognize
me or our volunteers and react enthusiastically by
jumping up and with lots of tail-wagging. But the best
thing is that after greeting us, the dogs turn back to
their owners. They're happy with their new homes."
Established in 2002, HKDR
focuses on 3Rs (rescue, rehabilitate and re-home). It
matured from a one-woman mission into a busy
animal-welfare team with a half-dozen employees and
dozens of volunteers. Each month, people adopt about 50
of the dogs.
"I founded HKDR out of
necessity," Sally said. "By chance, I learned about the
government kennels and the policy then of no re-homing.
Any dog going in was killed. So I started to help by
taking some dogs. Officially, only organizations could
do that so I had to form one.
"It began with one dog,
then two. When Christmas arrived, short staffing at the
kennels on the holidays meant that I had to take a lot
of dogs or they'd be destroyed. On that Christmas Eve, I
took 25 dogs with me to Lamma Island."
Now Sally ranks as Hong
Kong's leading dog guardian. "Probably no one has more
dogs than I do, at least legally. The government won't
allow dogs to be registered to an organization. So
technically, every dog in our care belongs to me."
HKDR keeps about 200 dogs
at its kennels in Tai Po. Twenty small dogs live at a
homing centre on Ap Lei Chau.
Meanwhile, Sally has three
remote houses together on Lamma where she lives with 80
dogs, mostly puppies and the adults who have lingered
the longest with HKDR. With so many "security guards",
she considers her home super-safe.
Sparky, a grateful dog, lavishes love on Hong
Kong Dog Rescue founder Sally Andersen.
Once selected by Sally, dogs can rest much
Sally wants to save nearly every dog, but can't.
Small dogs like this one await adoption on Ap
Sparky the dog listens as Sally speaks.
Dreaming of long life in a new home?
More people want tiny dogs, like this guy.
Always needing supplies, HKDR welcomes
Do 80 dogs and one human
living together create chaos? "It's amazing how well the
dogs organize themselves," Sally said. "At night, they
all sleep inside. Between themselves, they decide where
everyone sleeps. Even when I take them for walks, they
all have their own places in the group as we go. It's
always the same dogs on my right, the same dogs on my
left, in the same sequence. They work everything out. I
just oversee it."
Living with so many dogs
heightens Sally's understanding of them. "It makes me
appreciate them more," she said. "I know they're
intelligent, can sense and feel, get lonely or afraid
and experience emotions. Knowing them so well makes it
harder for me to see how they're treated by people who
Dogs "can be everything
best friends, companions and more. Having dogs or cats
is known to reduce peoples' blood pressure. But for me,
cats don't have the personality or bring the enjoyment
that dogs do."
Only once was Sally
seriously attacked by dogs. "I'd taken two bull-terriers
from AFCD," she said. "They'd been together a long time
and were very loyal. I tried to put the female back into
her kennel. The male thought I wanted to do something
horrible to his mate. He launched himself at me and
savaged me badly."
That grim incident put
Sally temporarily in a hospital bed, but didn't stop her
work. "These days I know how to approach dogs, read them
and keep myself safe when handling them," she said.
Sally grew up in Germany,
but she's British and later lived in London. "I always
loved animals," she said. "I had dogs, but horses were
my passion. I worked at anything that left me with
enough free time for horses. I knew people who needed
their horses exercised."
In 1984, Sally arrived in
Hong Kong on a journey around the world and stayed. Soon
she noticed the local dogs. "On Lamma, many dogs used to
be abandoned off the fishing boats," she said. "They
turned up all the time. I tried to find homes for those
dogs long before starting HKDR."
Then as a business
executive, Sally set up the New Age Shop, all about
meta- physics, personal growth and alternative health.
After selling it, she started HKDR.
Rescue always needs donations and volunteers. It takes a
massive effort to pay the bills, especially for
veterinarians, and to care for so many animals. All dogs
more than six months old get spayed or neutered.
Dedicated volunteers ensure the animals are well
exercised, socialized and happy.
Sally and her team insist
that dogs deserve kindness and respect. Even badly
behaved ones can reform. All HKDR training or
rehabilitation involves positive reinforcement, not
Invariably, people who hit
dogs worsen matters. "Owners who think their dogs
misbehave, maybe by running around and playing, will
yell at them and smack them. Then the dogs have no way
to defend themselves except by biting."
Lack of exercise causes
problems too. "Some people never take their dogs for
walks. Then they wonder why the dogs bounce off the
walls. When those dogs finally reach us, they're fine.
They just need some space and exercise."
Anyone wanting to adopt an
HKDR dog must complete a questionnaire. Then Sally and
her team recommend suitable candidates. "We know our
dogs and their personalities and try to match each dog
to the right home."
Mongrels often make the
best pets. "A dog's health and personality are far more
important than its breed," Sally said.
HKDR welcomes donations of
money, blankets, dog beds, crates or healthy dog treats.
It holds fundraising events and even operates a small
shop with dog-related products like calendars, desk
diaries and books showing the candidates for adoption.
"We need HK$400,000 per
month to operate," Sally said. Most of it comes from
Will HKDR remain Sally's
life-work? "I don't see how I can get out of it unless
there's a radical change in government policy, so that
we're no longer required," she said.
For more information:
Today, I'm celebrating the 3rd anniversary of my
weight loss surgery (Surgiversary of my Vertical Sleeve
Gastrectomy). I've lost almost half of my former body weight in
1.5 years and, more importantly, have managed to keep my new
weight steady for 1.5 years now, thanks to careful, thoughtful eating
- no more dieting! - and frequent exercise, mainly hill hiking
Automated email from
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY !! HAPPY ANNIVERSARY !!
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY !!
How have you been?
According to information you entered into
your profile with us, it was on this day, 3 years ago, that you
began your new life as a post op.
Congratulations on that rebirth!
Some post ops are forever eager with
boundless energy to share their story with peers. Others have
totally moved on in life and cringe at the very thought of being
reminded of the topic of obesity. Presumably you are somewhere
in between. Regardless of where you would place yourself, I'd
like to extend to you a sincere thank you.
I don't know if you and I might have
personally emailed or chatted online since I created
ObesityHelp.com in 1998, but I must tell you, our work (my
programming and the participation of people like you) have gone
a LONG way toward helping people. We had over 175,000 members at
the end of 2003. We get about one million page hits every day.
We've educated hundreds and thousands of health care
professionals in the country, helping take a big bite out of
obesity discrimination. It's really been much more than I had
ever expected when I started the site.
The reason I wanted to thank you is for
having set an example for others to follow. To this day, there
is fear and ignorance surrounding the topic. People like you who
took the brave step of moving forward and doing something
positive in your life stand out as an important role model to
I'm not sure how easily those days before
your surgery stand out by now, but every hour of the day,
hundreds of your peers years behind you go through profiles such
as yours for inspiration, hope an encouragement. While you might
have have grown light years away from your previous life, the
mark that you left behind on my web site has touched and
continues to touch tens of thousands of people...."
P.S. For more
details about my weight loss journey, as chronicled in a few
Lamma-zine stories, see this updated summary story:
The Detoxed Yoga Bunny.
Fishermen's Village Typhoon Shelter -
Saturday, Feb 19, 2pm:
Official start of the 2011 Dragonboating season
on Lamma! The Lamma Dragons have been launching the
Dragonboat they're renting from the Lamma fishermen - nicknamed
The Pig, stored in the Fishermen's Village during the
off-season, beyond the YSW Library - into the sea for the very
first time this year. They're calling it "putting The Pig in
water". All old and new dragonboaters were called in to help out
because this traditional, wooden boat is really heavy.
The Lamma Dragons'
very own fancy fiberglass boat, nicknamed The Piglet, is
stored off Power Station Beach. The threatened
removal & cleanup operation by the Lands Dept. last year
has been settled amicably, for the time being.
(Photos by Holly Trueman, thank you!)
If you're interested how the end of the
Dragonboating season will look like -taking The Pig out of the
water and storing it for the off-season - see my own photo
gallery from last year:
Jo Wilson -
Living Lamma - Tel. 9042 3241
(Text and pictures by Jo the (Honourary) Lap Sap
Living Lamma, in association with Green
Glass, has started an on-line campaign to ask government
for facilities to recycle glass.
Hong Kong has few places where glass can
be recycled. There are no facilities to do so on Lamma
and it is common to see glass bottles stacked next to
the bins, or wrongly, put into the recycling bins. Often
these bottles get broken causing a potential hazard for
Lamma's human and animal residents.
Elsewhere in the world, glass recycling
is common. Sweden recycles 100% of its glass,
Switzerland 95%, while in Asia, Japan recycles 90% and
South Korea 70%.
Hong Kong recycles just ONE percent. It
is hoped that this will improve in future. There are now
two glass recycling factories in Hong Kong, but the
problem is that there are very few collection points for
glass bottles and jars.
This is the reason for the petition. To
support this campaign, please go to
Glass HK. Your email details will remain
confidential, but you can view the signatures and
comments of others. Please help by circulating the
petition to as many people as you can. Don't worry about
the appeal for donations, this is from ipetitions and
can be declined.
Many thanks in advance for your support.
Please go to
and sign the petition.
As a wannabe professional photographer, I'm always carrying a camera
with me wherever I go, at least a handy, shirt-pocket-size,
touch-screen snapshooter. There are just too many opportunities
while out on Lamma that I come across a scene, a sight or
somebody when I just have to whip out my camera and sneak a
quick peek, grabbing a snapshot of a rare or even unique moment in
time, often never ever to be repeated again.
This is one such moment, a Newbie Lammaite (already a
Lamma Spirit Philosophy Café regular) who I talked to from the
opposite side of Back Street while the Sunday afternoon
pedestrian traffic was flowing relentlessly between us. The combination of colours, textures, fabrics, lighting
and that smile of an obviously happy and self-secure guy, Lamma
Winter Fashion at its most typical!
Take a bow, Tricky Dycky, Lammaite of the Day, an (un)official
"Welcome to Lamma!" to you from the Lamma-zine!
Let me continue my dormant series of "Lammaite of the Day",
building up a kind of Rogues' Gallery, like a visual history of
fascinating Lamma characters, or "unexpected encounters I
regularly have with the most interesting and peculiar personas",
as our newest Official Court Correspondent likes to call them.
Let's hope she tells us more about them soon....
But why do so many of these characters have
full beards?! Let's feature some hairless guys (and girls?) or
at least some unusual hair colours soon.
The world-famous Rainbow Warrior II ship by Greenpeace is
currently anchored at the Park Island pier, two ferry piers to
the left of Central's Lamma ferry pier. It's stopping over in HK
for a farewell visit before being de-commissioned and replaced
by version III later this year,
21 years in service. They were open to visitors last weekend, noon-4pm.
Senior Lammaite Dave Parker,
Lamma- zine Artist of the
the idea to the captain in person of stopping over in Yung Shue
Wan for a short visit while leaving HK in a few days. Captain
Michael welcomed the idea, if
somebody would organise it. Dave can't be in HK to do it
himself, he told me. He's looking for somebody to organise a
potential stopover, lunch, boat visit and photo opp of the Rainbow Warrior in YSW Harbour.
Anybody interested in organising this can get in touch with
the crew; just visit the boat, ask for the
captain and refer to Dave Parker.
Feb 22: I've just received a link
to a photo gallery of a few Lammaites visiting the Rainbow
Warrior recently, even being allowed inside! Grahame
"Dave Parker and I got to meet
the captain, Michael. Books were signed and exchanged and the
trip to Lamma was discussed. I hope that someone is able to
organise a visit by the ship to our fair isle as it would be a
great opportunity to see her before she is decommissioned."
"Rainbow Warrior Online" photo gallery
kneeling in the centre (he loves to be in the centre...) with
his drawing of the ship. He presented it and his book -
with Hong Kong -
to Captain Michael, in the red jacket.
P.S. II - Feb 24: Greenpeace has just responded to
"Thanks a lot for your email. Yet we are sorry to say that
the schedule for the following days of the RW has been set and
it is quite difficult for us to arrange a stop at the Lamma.
Yet we will be doing an additional open
day on FEB 26th, from 10am-15:30. The ship will leave
the city on the 27th. Hope you can come visit us this weekend!"
The first STOP poster appeared on the
Democracy Fence (opposite the Democracy Wall) about a week
ago. An Alert Reader (and mother) sent me a photo of the
poster, signed by the "Villagers and snakes from Yung
Shue Long Old Village". This most curious notice raises
a lot of questions:
It's in English, most unusual for a notice like this, no
Chinese at all, so obviously addressed at
non-Chinese-speaking children and their parents?
It's signed by the
"Villagers and snakes from Yung Shue Long Old Village".
How did they get permission to speak on behalf of the
Any feedback from the children being accused of stealing
tools and, most dastardly, disturbing the peaceful,
wintering snakes which are now stirring and becoming more
active soon again, ready to defend this private land by
attacking playful children?
How are these snakes being
rewarded for their guard duties of this private land, being
fed with mice?
How will the
police react if the land owners complain to them about
children disturbing the snakes?
They'd be most likely to thank the children for informing
them and then get on with catching and/or killing the
I started a forum topic -
STOP - and we learnt quite a few more details about
what caused the outrage expressed in the poster. During the
Lunar New Year holidays, local children played war games in
the Yung Shue Long Valley, even building kind of a "little
people village" in the bushes. Several forum members
witnessed the games, but were pretty sympathetic to the fun
Bringing up children on Lamma is very different
from much of the rest of HK, playing outdoors is usually
strongly encouraged, climbing on rocks and other mildly
dangerous activities are usually not discouraged at all.
Lunar NY holidays ended and the children had returned to
school, a similar poster appeared on the Democracy Fence:
HALT. Addressed to "The Legal & Loyal People", it
calls for "community action" against 200+ students taking over
the Kamikaze caves, organised via Facebook. It calls for a meeting at the YSW Library on
6pm today, Saturday. Somebody had already scribbled a huge
"BS" over it.
This is most
likely a creative spoof, a clever parody of the original
STOP poster. But judge for
yourself by clicking on the posters. By sheer coincidence, we
returned from the Lavender Garden Tour (see tomorrow's story) on the 5:50pm arrival
ferry. As expected, while
walking down the ferry pier we couldn't
see anybody assembling at the Library....
But hey, if you or somebody you know is behind
these posters, you're most welcome to post anonymously in our
STOP forum and tell us more!
Lamma-zine readers in front of a gas turbine inside the
Lamma Power Station (Photos above/below by
Grahame Collins, click above for
Some of us North Lammaites have been living here for decades,
but few of us have ever been inside the Power Station, even
though we live so close to it and see the 3 landmark chimneys
every day. After years of occasional, gentle persuasion by
myself, HK Electric's Public Affairs Dept. finally arranged one
of their extremely rare English-language visits into the Power
Station, this time exclusively for Lammaites. I invited the
subscribers and readers of my biweekly/monthly
Lamma-zine email newsletter (subscribe above) and
handled the registrations.
first-ever English-language tour for Lammaites filled up within
a day and one lady compared it to winning a Golden Ticket into
Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory! Quite a few people were left on
the waiting list, even after inviting a few more to replace
last-minute cancellations. I'll be trying to organise another
tour later this year, but they informed me that "the
corporate visit schedule in 2011 is extremely packed and we will
bear in mind your request and see what's the best we can do."
I've been permitted into the Power Station only a few times
myself, usually for Lamma-zine-related reasons:
"Familiarisation Visit" in 2004, soon after HK Electric became a
main advertiser on Lamma.com.hk;
* Passing through in an ambulance to get
Lamma-Por with a racing heart problem to the Power Station helipad to fly to the hospital,
Releasing trapped & neutered feral cats with Dr. John of
LAWC in 2009;
* Media-only briefing and site visit on the Power Station rooftop:
July 29, 2010: HK's Largest Solar Power System Launched.
HK Electric got loads of often very critical questions from us,
their "neighbours", but also quite a bit of positive feedback:
"I am impressed with the advent of their solar panels and
wind turbine plans, but how realistically viable are these
environmentally friendly ways to replace coal power for good?"
"Handled well by HKE's Edmund Pang (see right), some
questions from the tour group were skimmed over, but very
graciously. I would have been interesting to have seen some of
the working areas in action, staff canteen/ dormitory areas (of
there are any) to give us more of a sense of the working life
there. All in all, an interesting glimpse behind the gates."
Grahame: "A very impressive and informative tour.
Our host/guide was superb and his knowledge of the station and
it's operation was first class. The visitor
was very interesting and should be used more often, especially
for school visits. Thanks very much for organising the trip and
please pass thanks on to Mr. Pang for a very professional and
Alan: "Well, some interesting views, but as for the
machinery, all we saw was some big steel boxes in an empty room.
Nothing visible moving. No staff even.
Would have liked to have seen the control room (which was
upstairs from the hall we saw the video in); the dock with some
ships unloading coal say, or going into the furnaces. Somewhere
where something was happening.
All the people hassling the PR guy about pollution and
such was a silly waste of time. He's the wrong person to ask and
he'd never admit any problems."
Iliketurtles: "It was very good of L-G to organise
this trip, and, as I understand it, pretty ground breaking for
such a large party to be permitted, cameras et al, and the tour
be conducted in English. Mr. Pang treated us very well from
start to finish.
I am a fairly new resident here but I know of the
sensitivities the local community has (justifiably, in my
opinion) with regard to the Power Station so I thought this
would be an excellent exercise in getting to understand the
inner workings of the power station a little better.
At the time, I was a bit worried that the tone and style
of some of the questions from our group were perhaps a little
(and again, I can understand why this was the case).
Whether or not we found out
very much accurate detail over output waste, temperatures of
effluent water or other contentious information, the actual tour
was pretty awe-inspiring and if our community is permitted to
visit again, I would thoroughly recommend it. Just to see the
thousands of tonnes of coal just over the side of the hill from
our village was a sight to behold."
Jay Scott Kanes
Court Senior Correspondent -
(Pictures and story by Jay Scott Kanes)
Edmund Pang points out details at a tabletop model of
Islanders Enter Forbidden Zone
LAMMA POWER STATION -
Tall gates swung open, and security guards stood aside,
even smiled. Suddenly the large section of Lamma Island
strictly off-limits to locals and tourists, protected by
security cameras and barbed-wire-laced fences,
temporarily turned into a more welcoming place.
For the first time in recent memory, the
Hongkong Electric Company (HEC) allowed some neighbors
(about 40 of them) into the massive Lamma Power Station.
It conducted a tour specifically for Lamma Islanders and
complete with a bus (blue), hard-hats (white), a guide
(congenial) and information (plentiful).
Established in 1982, the Lamma Power
Station supplies electricity to Hong Kong Island, Ap Lai
Chau and Lamma. HEC public-affairs specialist Edmund
Pang explained that the 72-hectare station has eight
coal-fired units, five gas-turbine units and two
combined-cycle units for total capacity of 3,735
The station's three massive chimneys loom
above northern Lamma. "They're very tall 250 metres,"
Pang said. "We put in such tall chimneys because we
wanted to ensure that (emissions) would be dispersed to
Seventy per cent of the station's output
comes from burning coal. "We combust more than three
million tons of coal per year," Pang said.
Most of the coal, delivered by barges,
arrives from Indonesia with some from Australia and the
Philippines. Away back in the 1980s, Chinese mines
provided the coal, but now the booming mainland economy
needs its entire domestic supply.
For its remaining output, HEC relies
mainly on natural gas arriving from Guangdong Province
by a 92-km underwater pipeline. A windmill on a nearby
hillside and 5,500 on-site rooftop solar panels
Most of the visitors, despite living
beneath the massive chimneys, never before had set foot
inside the station. As residents of a blissfully
motor-traffic-free island, neither had they before
ridden on a Lamma bus.
Peering out the vehicle's windows at so
much industrial structure created a powerful impression
of no longer being on Lamma. Everything looked totally
different from the familiar "green" isle. Some
tour-takers marveled at the station's impressive roads,
complete with street names, which dwarf the footpaths
elsewhere on Lamma.
The visitors stood on an elevation and
peered down at a dusky ocean of coal, enough to supply
electricity for months. Seen from its base, the
stockpile resembled a black mountain range, much less
appealing to climb than Lamma's natural hills of rock
and dirt. A prominent sign warned of dangerous "coal
slips" that could bury people.
Although most of the tour participants
appeared to enjoy themselves, some grumbled that they
received incomplete or unsatisfactory answers to
"urgent" questions about air pollution from the big
chimneys. When asked about the station's "negative
impact", Pang replied that he couldn't think of any,
except maybe for the "visual" aspect.
The tour also stopped at a visitors'
centre (to view a tabletop model of the station) and at
a gas-fired generating unit's turbine hall.
Non-employees usually get
no closer than this locked gate.
Big signs discourage
Massive chimneys loom in
dwarf any man.
Plenty of coal waits,
ready to burn.
What does this gadgetry
Click for many more photos by Jay, Lamma-Gung, etc.
(pictures & story):
Visit to the Lamma Island
We see this big thing all the time, from all possible
points of view, its fundamental necessity crudely
interrupting the idyllic panorama of the Lamma Island
countryside. Yet it is not entirely unattractive. We
want to get closer. We want to go inside. And though it
is providing the most everyday, essential aspect of our
lifestyle (electricity is everywhere), the Lamma Island
Power Plant is "off-limits".
Understandably, access is restricted due to the
volatility of some of its components, as we are most
definitely made aware of once given "visitor" access. We
are as carefully processed as the power plant's coal ash
and methane exhaust. A PR campaign is underway, but we
also must be warned before coming close to the contained
explosion that energizes the city.
I want to go further into the industrial maze, to go off
the tour. Don't we all? The place disallows the curious
unguided individual, so I am restricted to a group
orientation (a virtual tour on the scale of models) and
am only given a couple of glimpses of the actual thing:
a huge turbine in a spotless, gigantic cavern; the
staggering mountains of coal that are reduced by our
electric consumption in a matter of weeks.
In some ways these power plants are our cathedrals; a
structure whose sheer size and organization generates a
more effective PR than any spoken argument, presentation
or 13-minute video (as we saw in the Visitor's Center).
Why would I call an industrial factory beautiful as it
blights the countryside? It is a dazzling house of power
with its attendant and efficient infrastructure,
something we soon find we are all in need of regardless
of the consequence.
Chairman Chan & Lammadonna after the mandatory Lion Dance
Click above for comprehensive photo gallery
Opening Ceremony - Lion Dance - Blessings by Choi San, God of
Primary School Children Performance - Big Bowl Feast, by Man
Fung Seafood Restaurant - Celebrity Karaoke - Magic Show -
Traditional Solo Dance -
Lucky Draws - Free Rice for Elderly
Setting up in the YSW Football
Pitch on a rainy day for Poon Choi (Big Bowl Feast)
Guests of Honour: the usual
suspects from HKKF, Tsui Wah Ferry, HK Electric, Lamma Police,
Rural Committee, Islands District Council and local politicians
Jackie of Concerto Inn, Jackson
the Property Agent,
Choi San, God of Fortune & Sharon of Waterfront/Island Bar
Northern Lamma Primary School and
their air-powered, battery-free melodicas
Yes, Lamma is a great place for a
Chow Yun Fat's Mum (see where
he gets his world-famous smile from?
Click on her smile to zoom in and see her finest Lunar New Year
Jackson the Property Agent - Jackie of Concerto Inn
Click to enlarge any picture
Stylus Theatre HK: Press
release, written for Lamma-zine:
New Lamma resident in
in smash hit stage comedy
Educating Rita by Willy
Adam Harris has moved to Lamma
this week. He continues a long tradition of Lamma
residents leading Hong Kong's theatre scene. He directed
Lammaites Andy Fullard and Meg Teckman in
the sell-out The Rocky Horror Show last year.
Adam says that
Educating Rita should appeal to
Lamma residents as it explores many of the lifestyle
decisions that lead people to live on this island. It is
also wonderfully funny.
The play runs
Wednesday 23rd to
Saturday 26th February (with no show on the
Friday and Saturday night are sold out so, tickets are
only available for Wed 8pm and Sat 3pm. They are
www.urbtix.hk and cost HKD 190.
The play, which led of course to the
beloved motion picture with Michael Caine (whose part
Adam is playing) and Julie Walters, portrays a
working-class Liverpool girl's hunger for education that
leads her to the door of an alcoholic university tutor
and failed poet.
In the words of the Sunday Times it
"...simply a marvellous play,
painfully funny and passionately serious;
a hilarious social documentary; a fairy-tale with a
quizzical half-happy ending."
Educating Rita won the West End's
Olivier Award for Best Comedy in 1980.
A charming, poignant and hilarious
evening of theatre
not to be missed and with much food
for thought on the ferry home.
Let me tell you a different type of
Valentine's Day story today. It's a true story of how I
almost got fired from my high-flying job in my former life
as a high-flying "Mr Internet", all because of a Valentine's
Day story in the SCMP, my most memorable Valentine's
I reconnected recently with the guy who
threatened to fire me instantly back then, the Deputy Director
of the company. He was looking for info on his old friend, late
Senior Lammaite Jenks, via this website a few weeks ago.
He found our R.I.P. Jenks story via Google and contacted
recognised his name and we reconnected, after no contact in over
a decade. He's happily retired now back in the UK and admitted
to me with hindsight that the incident back then was an
"appallingly embarrassing Valentine debacle" (his words) for
him and the company.
all started when the SCMP wanted to publish a story about how I
had met my HK-Chinese wife, Lamma-Por, on the Internet 26 years
ago - a very unusual way of hooking up way back, you know, in
the last millennium. Planned for the cover of the CITY section
on Valentine's Day 199x, it was based on a private interview and
photos in our home. The story didn't even mention the company I
was working for back then as their Head of interactive
multimedia projects (all their Internet and multimedia
activities - CD-ROMs, touch-screen kiosks, CGI, etc - for their
20 offices worldwide).
When hearing about this almost completed story,
the Deputy Director came down from his aloof Executive Floor in
person and took me aside. He bluntly threatened to fire me
instantly for insub- ordination if I wouldn't stop the SCMP from
publishing the already written, purely personal story. He
asserted that I was well-known in the industry and that many
readers would know where I was working when reading the SCMP
story, even if the company wasn't mentioned at all.
The company had suffered some major bad
publicity weeks before - somebody being killed by a tragic
accident during a yearly high-profile event they had organised -
big news back then. So this usually very publicity-hungry
company decided to try hiding from the public for a while,
trying to lay low in all the media, let it blow over and not
even permitting private, positive media appearances by any
employee - without informing us first, of course.
almost left the company that day, so angry about this intrusion
and violation of my privacy. But it was the best job I've ever
had in HK, making a real difference with a big, ever-increasing
budget and resources, winning numerous awards for the company
and surfing at the leading edge of the local Internet
revolution. So I relented, very grudgingly, getting the story
pulled almost at the last minute. It was a pretty angry and
upset Valentine's Day for us that year. But I continued my great
fun job, till I was headhunted away by Hutchison some time later
to head up one of their Internet startup companies.
Just a few weeks later, it all blew over and our
PR Manager got a full one-page personal profile in the Post
Magazine. One year later, our love story was finally published,
without any opposition, just one day before Valentine's Day. It
was a very warm and entertaining story making lots of fun of me,
written by another journalist friend - a much better story than
the original one - about "real romance in a virtual world".
Email me if you're interested to read it.
Jennifer the Food Anthropologist
(Story & pictures by Jennifer)
It happened on Main Street during the rainy afternoon
today, Feb 13. I attach 8 photos.
I was on my way to the Bookworm to enjoy the Soup &
Salad meal, when I got caught in the midst of drums
banging, horns blowing and a procession of curious
people and local performers following a man dressed up
as a colorful fairy-tale creature of some kind
(Lion/Dragon? I couldn't see) and another man acting as
They were apparently visiting some of the Main Street
restaurants- and food stalls to perform a "Chinese New
Year Business Blessing ritual" (for lack of a better
concept, I am sure locals can fill you in on what was
actually going on) and to collect salad heads placed
outside and inside the restaurants and food stalls, and
collect red pockets with money as a sacrificial gift to
keep the businesses in good health over the coming year
of the Rabbit.
I asked at the Green Cottage what was going on and got
this explanation above. However, they did not participate, as
owner-chef Ron is a Christian.
Later, as I finally got to the Bookworm, another
surprise awaited: a young US anthropologist, science
fiction- and home brewing expert living in Shenzhen had found his way
to our lovely Lamma. He had decided to defeat the rain
and do the hike from Yung Shue Wan over to Sok Kwu Wan. We ended up sharing a table and our discussion on home
brewing lasted for hours, before we eventually said
goodbye and I pointed out the way towards Hung Shing Yeh
It was a typical "Lamma day":
local culture experienced up close, which at least to me
are some of the reasons I decided to move here in 2009!
P.S. Do YOU have an interesting Lamma- or Lammaite-related story,
blog or photo gallery that you'd like more Lammaites to see and/or read?
Become a guest blogger or correspondent for the Lamma-zine!
Waterfront Restaurant -- B&B
(click to enlarge)
Palm Tree Restaurant - Concerto Inn
(click to enlarge)
(These 3 restaurants are Lamma-zine advertisers)
The Democracy Wall at the ferry pier,
renovated and painted in steely-grey, has been out of poster
display duty for the last several months. Any and all
posters are being removed by at least one anonymous,
secretive cleanup vigilante, NOT the cleaning ladies of the
FEHDept. The fence opposite The Wall has taken over the
poster-display duties. I'd suggest to call it Democracy
Fence from now on, till a better name is made up.
The Democracy Fence is filling up with often
interesting & intriguing posters nowadays, building up layer
upon layer as nobody is cleaning off outdated posters on a
regular basis, forming a cultural history of Lamma, our events,
activities and concerns.
I often wonder what the swarms of visitors make
of us if they ever (rarely) take the time to look at this
current crop of posters (see below) more closely. No wonder
we've still got this annoying "Hippie Island" moniker, when
Lamma visitors see posters like the first one below, promising to
your broken soul, activate your DNA, change your unsupportive
beliefs, and remove your blockages to manifesting the abundance
you desire". Wow, doesn't it all sound great and wonderful?
I desire abundance and would love to remove all my blockages,
activate my DNA and heal my broken soul! Sign me up!
Hey, can I
also get my PC fixed while you're fixing my broken soul, please?
metaphysical example of a very artsy poster for a Buddhist
meditation and discussion group. These two versions of the very
same poster seem to demonstrate some basic concepts of Buddhism:
the water below the mythical lotus flower dissolving our massive
egos, melting away our many worldly desires, washing away our
impurities and sins, reaching blissful Nirvana?
Maybe the posters
just demonstrate the karmic,
transcendent, eternally repeating mantra of the ever-lasting
truth: "Never use inkjet printers for outdoor posters!"
Today, just a little favour for an old friend and former
Lamma Artist of the Month. He's returned from Sri Lanka
recently and is looking for more freelance work. You can contact
him for all types of illustrations and cartoons:
Something you don't see often on Lamma on a
weekday is a long queue. We (almost) never have to queue up
anywhere, not even in restaurants or shops. Except when there's
something desirable is being handed out for free, then a long line
will form almost instantaneously!
This morning, well before 9am, outside our "City
Hall", the Rural Committee office opposite HSBC on Yung Shue Wan
Main Street, at least 20 Lammaites - mostly female, many elderly - lining up before the office opened at 9am. Always
curious, Lamma-Por and I joined in the lineup to see what this
most unusual phenomenon was all about. Such a long queue of
Lammaites at such an early hour can only mean one thing:
something highly desirable, but very limited is being given away
for free, but only while stock lasts!
the only non-Chinese in the lineup, one of just a handful of
males and the tallest in the queue, I wasn't embarrassed one bit
(honest!) But quite a few acquaintances walked by on their rush
to the office, looking at me incredulously, probably wondering
what I was lining up for.
Well, the office opened on time and we rushed
in, without trampling anybody (this time). Yes, they gave away
tickets, first come first served, for an all-free
Lunar New Year Tour, including
transportation, all fees and even lunch provided!
Only two tickets per person were handed out and
they were gone within minutes! So if you're also interested in
joining this tour with our fellow islanders from Sok Kwu Wan,
Peng Chau and Cheung Chau, then you're way too late by now, heh
But it was posted in
my Lamma Events
Calendar well before Lunar New Year and listed at the
top of the home page & forum.
So don't complain I didn't tell you, please!
P.S. You might wonder how come that both
Lamma-Por and I were passing by City Hall at such an ungodly,
early hour, not working in town? Well, like all the others
queuing, we knew about it beforehand, of course! Most of us
spotted this poster above posted on the door of the Rural
Committee well before the Lunar New Year holidays. This is the
inside welcome desk these days, but I think the expensive-
looking red wine bottles are not freebies for takeaway,
Well, there'll be another one of my photo
galleries about this tour on Sat, Feb 19, of course. For future
tours, keep an eye or two peeled for posters on the doors of our
City Hall, announcing these frequent, free or heavily subsidised
tours for islanders. They're usually announced and conducted in
Cantonese only, so bring along your personal interpreter. Thank
you, Lamma-Por! This is her ticket:
Today, I've got a new link to a very good,
personal blog by a Lammaite. Stella
Bella is living on "Happy Island", not "Hippie
Island" with her Hubby. So we could call him HHHH, Her Happy
Probably not, but their adventures and frequent hikes of
exploring our home island, with loads of great and artsy photos,
might even show us other Lammaites some new places to explore
P.S. If you'd like a few (or a lot) more
readers for YOUR personal, non-commercial Lamma-related blog,
let me know and I'll be happy to promote it for you here in the
Lamma-zine; for free, of course! Always eager to promote the
best of Lamma!
TwoCrew, the off-Lamma graffiti painters,
returned yesterday to finish their painting at the back of
the house opposite Tropicana takeaway restaurant on Back
Street, just after Nick's Corner. It was
started on Jan 27.
A Chinese neighbour living close-by smiled at me
when I took this photo above and exclaimed in an admiring tone
"Hoh laengah!" Yes, I agree, it's really beautiful and
I'll be happy to pass this colorful, cheerful artwork at
least once per day.
The TwoCrew Team is always looking for legit
places to paint, with explicit permission only, often just for the
cost of the spray cans,
plus copious amounts of beers, preferably Heineken. You've got a
sad, blank wall, outdoors or indoors, that could display their
Let's talk about prodding a hornet's nest with a
long stick! Longtime forum member FunkyJazzy courageously dared to post his
personal opinion about Lamma's many musicians and the
quality of music performed here. He mentioned amateurs who
can only strum 2 or 3 chords, low quality, Lamma
parties dominated by Irish music and drunken shouting
instead of beautiful singing, Lamma's musicians not
having the proper knowledge ("How many inversions can the G5
chord make?") and not working hard enough to become
really good, in his opinion. He demands that all
performed music should "sound good",
"be beautiful" and "has to be art".
As expected, this caused serious offense to
our local musicians and their legions of fans and friends! They rebuked FunkyJazzy in
various ways with some pretty good arguments and loads of passion. Even a
professional from the HK Philharmonic, Mark, chimed in with an
expert opinion. One of his neighbours, fellow Tai-Penguin Zep, wrote:
"One of the pleasures of living in Tai Peng
is to hear the mellow tones of a French horn drifting through
the evening calm. The question of whether or not it is really
art does not keep me awake at night."
Amen to that, well said, Zep! Join in
the on-going discussion and post your own honest and outspoken opinions
in our (still) free speech forum:
Standard of Lamma international music scene - G5 chord
Personally, I think there are many very talented
musicians living here, but they don't have enough opportunities
to perform locally. I've followed the local music scene for
almost 9 years, promoting every single gig by Lamma musicians
and bands all over HK I'm made aware of, via my free Lamma Events
calendar. After a big peak a few years ago, so many bands & so
many gigs, playing all over HK, even winning awards, it's slowed
down dramatically in the last 1-2 years, unfortunately. Lamma
Bands, where art thou and when can we enjoy your performances
again locally more frequently?
But seeing the many musicians of so many
different musical styles and the crowd of all ages and
nationalities dance, cheer and have great fun together during
the best local music event last year (IMHO), the
Melting Pot Festival in the Football Pitch on Nov 21, gives me
great hope for the future of Lamma's International music scene!
Let's hope there'll also be another DickStock happening this year,
plus the yearly Lamma Fun Day and HaydonFest, of course!
Jay Scott Kanes -
Official Court Pet
(Pictures and story by Jay Scott Kanes, additional photos by
Bird-Man Flies Across an Ocean
to Find Feathered Friends
in a Lamma Garden
Mike trying out Anonymous Guy's hide.
AMID THE TREES, Lamma Island, Hong Kong
- By his own admission, Mike Danzenbaker has become
obsessed with birds. Recently his fascination took him to Hong Kong
and directly to a small house with a secret garden hidden by trees
on a Lamma hillside.
One of North America's leading bird photographers, 51-year-old
Mike, who lives near San Francisco and works as a computer-software
writer, wants to take pictures of all the 950 bird species sighted
on his home continent. "I don't care where I go to find them," he
said. "So far, my total stands at about 915."
When Mike noticed photos of Rufous-tailed robins published online
by Hong Kong bird- photographer Guy Miller (nicknamed
Anonymous Guy), who had taken them in his Lamma garden, he decided
on drastic action. He contacted Guy, asked permission to come for a
one-week visit (hoping to shoot similar photos) and then booked an
"One time before, I saw a Rufous-tailed robin, but it hid in
bushes and didn't let me get a good look," Mike said. "Normally I
take photos of any new bird that I see. In that case, it was too
elusive. So in my mind it developed a certain mystique. I didn't
know how I'd ever photograph one. So I jumped into action when I saw
Guy's pictures. I knew he had something happening with that bird."
On the fourth day concealed inside a rectangular "bird hide" (a
carefully built place of concealment with small openings through
which to point powerful cameras) in Guy's garden, Mike finally got
the photos he wanted. He felt "the usual elation that follows
success after putting in a big effort".
At such triumphant moments, a bird photographer must settle for
"quiet" elation. When inside a bird "hide", it's unhelpful to shout,
dance or pop champagne corks. "You're elated, but you continue
trying for even better photos," Mike said.
As a bonus, Mike also photographed other notable birds: the
Pallas's leaf warbler, the yellow-browed warbler and the
red-breasted flycatcher. "It's been a wildly successful week," he
said, after spending 80 hours in the bird hide and shooting
thousands of images.
Earlier bird-searches took Mike to Japan, Europe, Canada, much of
Central and South America and nearly every U.S. state. How many
other people globetrot to photograph particular birds? "Hardly any,"
Although visiting Hong Kong for the first time, Mike barely
glanced at the famous skyscrapers and Victoria Harbor. Even the Mai
Po Marshes, a reserve popular with wetland birds where bird-watchers
and photographers often flock, failed to lure him.
"There's a bird called the spoon-billed sandpiper whose
population has fallen to a few hundred," Mike said. "It migrates
through Mai Po. Birding groups from North America come to Hong Kong
every year specifically hoping to see that bird."
Yet Mike prefers the exclusive, up-close setting in Guy's garden.
"I can return to Hong Kong and go to Mai Po later," he said. "It's
best there during the spring and fall migrations."
Guy, who has lived on Lamma for 20 years, "absolutely never" goes
to Mai Po. "The birds are too far away," he said. In his garden, he
lures dozens of varieties to within a few metres of his camera.
"Not only is Guy's garden rich in birds, but he arranges things
so the birds come down right in front of you where it's easy to see
and photograph them," Mike said. "You can find the same birds in
other areas, but usually they're hard to photograph. They're high in
trees or skulking in bushes."
Guy attracts the birds with flowing water, a tiny waterfall,
pools suitable as bird baths and appealing arrangements of rocks,
sticks and greenery. He spent several years renovating his garden to
"The sound of flowing water not only attracts birds, but also
obscures the noise of my camera shutter," Guy said. "Every few days
I shift around the rocks, branches and sticks. Otherwise all the
shots of different birds would be on the same few perches. I also
place the rocks so that when I'm inside the hide, the birds are at
eye-level, allowing me to get the best shots."
When photographers enter the bird hide, Guy's dogs, Rocky
and Barnie, must stay inside the house. At other times, they
assist by chasing away any prowling cats attracted by the
bird-sounds. If Guy leans low and whispers the word "cats" to Rocky,
the black canine leaps to his feet and sets off to "patrol the
garden's perimeter" to ensure that no felines have entered.
A garden on one of Hong Kong's outlying islands may seem like an
unusual place for Mike to wander. In fact, his most-unusual
photography sites have been in "remote parts of South America"
(northern Peru, eastern Ecuador and Colombia).
One "big highlight" for Mike happened 12 years ago when he
photographed a spoon-billed sandpiper. "I found one, and it hung
around the same pond for a few days so I got lots of photos."
Sometimes his activities place him in personal peril. "On the
Falkland Islands, I walked along a boulder-strewn beach trying to
get close to a bird," he said. "When I rounded one boulder, a
southern sea lion sat on the other side. It's a huge animal, mostly
head and mouth. This one charged me right away. I ran as fast as I
could while carrying my big lens and tripod over a shoulder and
trying not to fall and break an ankle. For short distances, southern
sea lions can sprint faster than a man can run, but I got away and
didn't look back."
Mike attributes his interest in birds to his late father, John,
an avid bird-watcher in the 1980s and early 90s who compiled one of
the world's longest bird-lists (of those he'd seen, about 7,500
varieties). Although Mike isn't sure exactly how many birds he has
photographed, he estimates the total at about 3,000 types. He likens
it to fishing, gambling, flying or "other activities with which
people become obsessed".
What makes birds so appealing? "Partly it's that there are so
many types (about 10,000 worldwide) and that they're relatively easy
to see compared to the likes of mammals, insects or reptiles.
They're beautiful and capture the imagination. They make good
With many bird varieties facing extinction, Mike's photos gain
extra importance. "One reason I photograph birds is to increase
awareness and help with conservation. Photos of birds can help to
generate interest in them. Often I contribute photos to
organizations or publications whose mission is to preserve birds and
Extinctions are "tragic", Mike said. "By allowing species or
eco-systems to go extinct, we do a disservice to future generations.
We don't have to either because most of the problems occur due to
human activities. I can't say that I have a lot of optimism. It's
difficult for individuals to have a positive effect, but they can by
really devoting themselves."
Mike also sells photos to appear in books or magazines. Although
not allowing him to quit his day job, the revenue helps to finance
his hobby. "It pays for equipment and some travel."
How does Mike's wife, Lee Hung, a Taiwanese-American,
react to his passion for birds? "She's interested in birds too,
which helps to keep our marriage intact," he said. "That's how we
met when I gave a bird-slideshow presentation at a local club, and
Now married for 17 years, Mike and Lee have no children or pet
birds just a cat named Mau, who lives indoors. "Outdoor
cats can be very damaging to the bird population," Mike said.
Living in a suburban house with a typical yard, Mike has little
prospect to photograph birds there. "Our yard isn't suitable. We
don't have much in the way of trees."
So presumably Mike soon will board yet another airplane in
pursuit of more bird photos elsewhere. In a way, the blue sky
appeals to him just as much as to the birds he loves.
For remarkable bird photos, visit Mike's Website:
Bird-photographer Mike Danzenbaker briefly faces a camera lens
A rectangular 'bird hide' (right), to conceal photographers, sits
strategically in the garden.
Teamed-up bird-men: Guy Miller and Mike Danzenbaker.
Rocky, the dog, stands guard against bird-hungry cats.
Rocky & Barnie
A view from the bird hide shows the attractive
Inside the hide
A veritable bird paradise, flocks gathering in the late afternoon
Bird garden close-up
shot by Mike from Guy's hide
shot by Mike from Guy's hide
Bird Image of the Year 2008 Runner-up on
Another one of Mike's prize pictures: Swift in flight:
Bird Image of the Year 2005 on
One of the very oldest, maybe the oldest
restaurant of Yung Shue Wan will be celebrating their 40th anniversary this
year. It's been featured numerous times in the Lamma-zine over the years and
I thought it a nice idea to link a few of the best parties, events and
photos of recent years. We're also celebrating the great news that
Lamma Seaview Man Fung Seafood Restaurant
has finally agreed to become a Lamma-zine top advertiser, starting today!
Man Fung Seafood Rest. is a great sunset watching spot.
the very first restaurant off the YSW ferry and a fine hangout to watch the
ferry pier's activities and the ferry crowds returning home. They'll be expanding their current 200 seats to 260
with a new harbourfront extension under construction, to be opened next
The Man Fung is also the only restaurant in
all of North Lamma which is QTS-certified, the Quality Tourism Services
Scheme awarded by the HK Tourism Board.
Seasonal dishes include very rare and
precious seafood delights, not available in other North Lamma restaurants:
their famous Spider Crab, Crystal Crabs and even Wild Abalones. They also
feature a very wide selection of Chinese spirits and Western wines on an
extensive and comprehensive wine
The serve many Lamma visitors and international customers,
after having been featured in many major, big overseas magazines and now
even in a minor, little Lamma website as well. ;-)
They've had many famous guests; for example
Philippine President Arroyo!
I was lucky enough to be the world-exclusive photographer, selling my photos
to the SCMP:
Nov 3, 2006: Philippine President's Lamma Lunch.
Some more great events in Man Fung, covered in Lamma-zine
Thai Lantern Festival - Loy Krathong 2004
Loy Kra Tong - Thai Lantern Festival 2005
Lamma Dragons - Season End Party Man Fung Seafood Restaurant
Santa in the Village 2009
Food review of Man Fung's unique Lobster Sashimi:
Lucky Louie's Last Lunch.
On Feb 15, they'll cater Poon Choi lunch
(Big Bowl Feast, free for Lamma's elderlies) in the Football Pitch at
Lunar New Year Carnival (see above). This is quite an honour for Man
Fung; last year's 35-table Big Bowl Feast was shipped in from Yuen Long,
HK's Poon Choi Capital. My photo
shoot is scheduled already.
These are their 4 most famous signature dishes
and 4 other very popular seafood dishes (click to enlarge):
today, Feb 4, after just a 2-day break for Lunar New Year. See
you there soon, on a harbour-side, sunset-facing table?!
war is over and you can come out of hiding now; it's safe
again (I hope). There were all these frightening noises and
sights around midnight all over Yung Shue Wan, sounding like
rapid-fire machine guns, massive explosions, bright light flashes,
huge clouds of smokes rising, even a few rockets exploding
over Main Street! It looked and sounded like being in the
epicenter of a war zone, not on peaceful and tranquil
Lamma! Even far away from the main action all along Main
Street, all the way to the Tin Hau Temple, the sound was
still deafening. Our North Lamma Clinic will have to deal
with quite a few cases of short-term hearing loss, tinnitus, burst eardrums
and , I suspect?
In the early
morning after the Big Battle, I dared to leave my safe and
secure home and ventured down into the village for a peek. Here are a few
snapshots of the aftermath of the yearly Big Battle:
Yung Shue Wan Main Street, everything closed and
no people, a very rare sight.
Tin Hau Temple, the epicenter of all the
midnight fireworks fun. Despite the dire warning police poster
above, nobody has been arrested (as far as I know).
Within a few hours, all these signs of a great
night out were cleaned up by our efficient and hard-working
Lap Sap Ladies from the FEHD. Kung Hei Fat Choy to them and
all the Lammaites recovering from the aftermath and the after
effects of last night. You've got several holidays and a long
weekend ahead to recover fully.
Surprisingly and most unusually, a single convenience store and one
take-away shop are actually open this morning, the very first day
of the Lunar New Year!
Great new posters
outside Diesel's Sports Bar, showing the true Lamma Spirit.
Life goes on after the yearly
Big Battle; most bars, restaurants and shops will reopen
tomorrow, the second day.
Jay Scott Kanes
Court Correspondent -
(Story, pictures and captions by Jay Scott Kanes.)
One Story, Two Reporters
one! Just as I'm about to send you the attached, you've
published a version of the same story.
doubt, you've heard the saying that 'great minds think
It's a wonder that we didn't meet when taking
Anyhow here's another version (just for your reference
now, I suppose)."
Fuzzy Heads Follow
Aftermath of the Year of
the Rabbit's Arrival
Kung Hei Fat Choy! Does indulging in Chinese
New Year's Eve festivities still look like such a great
idea when enduring hangovers the next day? I doubt it,
but others may disagree.
When the Chinese Year of the Rabbit officially hopped
into Yung Shue Wan, I'd already been sleeping, snug in
my bed, for more than an hour. Then the blasts of
firecrackers and shouts of revelry from outside jolted
Knowing the impossibility of returning to dreamland
(for a few minutes at least), I wandered downstairs to
watch televised coverage of New Year's Eve activities in
more populous parts of Hong Kong. Once on the sofa, I
also needed to reassure and comfort my dog. She dislikes
firecrackers and trembles at the sounds.
Eventually, the last Main Street partiers staggered
home. After morning had dawned, the dog and I strolled
through the blissfully-quiet (at last) village.
Bits of red paper, remnants of firecrackers,
fluttered underfoot, in places completely covering the
pavement. Stone lions guarding the Tin Hau Temple were
encircled by the stuff.
Red envelopes, earlier holding precious lai see
(money), had been torn open and left to litter the
streets. "That won't help the environment," I muttered.
In front of a popular restaurant, bottles and bowls
remained on tables surrounded by empty chairs. Uneaten
food, no longer looking delicious, filled some dishes.
The scene suggested that maybe a high-tech explosion had
vaporized the party-minded diners.
Unfinished beer and spent firecrackers: party aftermath.
Nearby the usually bustling Sampan Seafood Restaurant
stood shuttered and silent, its tables oddly empty.
Without clusters of people, it looked like an entirely
Shuttered and silent, the Sampan Seafood Restaurant
looks entirely different.
Red posters showing amorous-looking rabbits appeared
on the closed shutters of shops and eateries. Most
indicated when the proprietors planned to reopen after
the New Year holidays.
Along the nearly empty ferry pier, Chinese lanterns
waved in the breeze. Colorful flags fluttered overhead.
Not even fellow dog-walkers appeared as I trudged
along the Main Street, pointing my camera at everything
of interest. Among the only early-risers were children,
dressed in holiday finery, but still ready to play.
Inside the village houses, people surely snored,
their heads heavy, nearly impossible to lift off
pillows. Before long, they might start to revive
(reluctantly) with pounding headaches, fuzzy brains and
other hangover symptoms to spoil the first day of the
Year of the Rabbit.
"Ha! It serves them right for disturbing my sleep," I
told the dog. She replied by wagging her tail and
marching through another mound of firecracker debris.
Bits of red paper,
remnants of firecrackers, encircle a stone lion at the
Tin Hau Temple.
In places, the remains of firecrackers completely cover
Torn-open red envelopes litter the streets.
Along the nearly empty ferry pier, Chinese lanterns wave
in the breeze.
Colorful flags flutter overhead.
Dressed in holiday finery, a youngster glides right into
a new year.
This large banner below greets anybody stepping off the ferry in
Yung Shue Wan, the very first thing that all Lamma visitors see.
How could I get a Lamma-zine banner into that prime location? I
could never afford it....
This is an "official", professionally designed and printed Kung
Hei Fat Choi from our local politicians, our powerful
powers-that-be, as opposed to my little home-made greeting
above. Which is tastier? ;-)
Yung Shue Long
valley farm. Click to zoom in on Teddy bear.