Hong Kong + Just James = News for You (Previously the "JustJames" Blog.)

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Chapter Six: A Series of Firsts, A Series of Fits.

When it's right, it's home... A still from Wong Kar Wai's "Happy Together".

Have you ever wondered what you would do, or how you would react if ever you were given a chance to start your life all anew and with a clean slate? This isn't really about second chances, this is about getting that rare opportunity to make a sharp left turn. While all this shouldn't be seen as leaving ones past behind for the sake of a clean slate, it is a chance to pause (for an indefinite amount of time) to put all that baggage from the past somewhere else for a moment, and to go ahead, and move on with the your new future with the lessons one has learned.

My friend Susan told me last night over dinner that I've had the opportunity to absorb plenty of firsts as of the last three weeks... my first HK checking
account, my first HK cellphone plan, my first Smart HK ID Card, my first apartment, my first furniture, my first (real) job, my first Octopus card (THE definitive card to carry in HK, it gets you in and out of the Subway station and the 7-eleven... among other places... without having to stop to pay... it scans strong enough so that you can just leave it in your bag. You just have to keep putting money into it.) While some of my senses and emotions are also undergoing a series of firsts, I've had some feelings and emotions that were uncovered within the last few weeks in this damn crazy city that, due to history and time, I thought were long gone.

Having the awe and wonder about new people, new places, and new situations... pain, frustration, fear, hope, opptimism, and a joie de vivre, all bursting to new levels... that unfortunately were disensitized by life in the last couple of years.
Is it possible to feel the most at home than I've ever been in a place where I don't even know what's around the corner two blocks away from my building, or that I don't even speak the language, or can read the menu, or that I've only been here for three weeks?

Last night I was at some funky Karaoke party where everyone in the room was a stranger, except for a few friends who were in the room with me. Everyone sang a cantonese pop-song, and my one chance to sing (a Michelle Branch song out of all things)... I couldn't even finish because by then I was on my fifth glass of whisky). The projection screen was an endless parade of canto pop stars... well... there were canto pop stars in that room singing to... their own music videos... watching themselves on screen, that was weird.

Anyway my point is that I didn't know any of these people, but in some Wong Kar Wai-esque form, I've felt like I've hung out or bumped into these people in these situations before in another lifetime and that our paths are just intersecting again the way in which they were meant to have been.
In some Wong Kar Wai-esque way, I don't know if it is actually a series of firsts... the ID cards, the bank accounts, the job, the apartment, the new friends... rather, Hong Kong was here in my life all along. Tangibly it's new, but in essence, the whole thing feels more like I'm just getting all my stuff back. Everything was already here, waiting for me to come back to, to put it on, to wear it, live it, in the natural way that home... and this city, is supposed to simply fit.


Blogger mr. fry said...

of course i remember! lol! i love your blog, you always have great stuff to say.

anyway good luck in HK, or should i say.. the big mandarin orange =)

2:10 PM  
Anonymous wireless crazy said...

Like your blog. Found it searching for like minded souls out there.
All blessings, Cell Phone

5:58 AM  

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