There’s nothing lovelier than sitting down with tea and a book… or four. One of the books I brought from Canada and the other three were loaned by my uncle. I’m trying to voraciously read through them all before I fly back.
I actually started my trip with zero books. On the car ride to the airport, I realized I forgot to pack a book. I quickly picked Tell it to the Trees by Anita Rau Badami, a Canadian author, from the airport store. It is a chilling mystery, set during the winter in a small town in BC, about the lives of an Indian family. The descriptions of the winter definitely overcame the my current humid environment. I also appreciated reading about a culture I’m unfamiliar with. I finished the book faster than I expected, so I was glad to borrow a few books from my uncle.
The Rumpole Omnibus by John Mortimer details the hilarious reminiscences of Rumpole, a criminal defence lawyer in Britain. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed out loud this much reading a book before!
Finally, I’m flipping through Streets: Exploring Hong Kong Island by Jason Wordie. Initially I thought it’d be a simple guide-book, but it’s actually so much more. Wordie infuses Hong Kong’s history into the tours he created. He describes what has changed, what (little) has stayed the same, the seemingly mundane and the popular, but with his own twist. This is all with a very dry humour.
For example, “the new Central Library [in Causeway Bay] has magnificent holdings, state-of-the-art facilities and helpful staff, all housed in what surely be one of Hong Kong’s most hideous modern buildings.” HA! That is probably not the best example of his subtle humour.
I’ve done some Wordie-inspired tours that I hope to post about. But one of my biggest enlightenment was something I pass by every day, I’m embarrassed to admit:
The Pedder Building on Pedder Street in Central. Built in 1923, the Pedder Building has somehow survived. It is now surrounded by the typical office buildings.
The Pedder Building is the location of the bus stop I alight to go work, but I just never looked up. It seems that an Abercrombie and Fitch will be located in it. I suppose that is a functional use, but I wonder how many shoppers will notice the beautiful historical building above the store.