Celebrating Two Public Holidays

Happy Canada Day to my Canadian readers! Today is also the 15th anniversary of the handover of Hong Kong, Kowloon and the New Territories to China. Based on reading the South China Morning Post, it seems the feelings are mixed. President Hu Jintao is visiting HK and there are protests and police presence here. It is somewhat unsettling to see the latter. The suspicious death about a month ago of June 4th activist, Li Wanyang, angered Hong Kongers. C. Y. Leung, the new chief executive leader, sworn in today, has been in the midst of a scandal because illegal structures breaching building regulations were discovered in his home at the Peak.

I must admit I thought it was a little amusing when I read the front page headline last week that said “C.Y. Leung Has Illegal Basement Too.” It seemed so trivial. Then I learned that the previous “favoured” chief executive leader had an illegal basement in his home, which factored against him becoming chief executive. I think all these issues have made some Hong Kongers bitter about the handover celebrations. I plan to go to the fireworks tonight with my local friend, but maybe it is more something to do rather than actually celebrate.

Speaking of the Peak, last week I went to the Peak with a couple of relatives. However, we didn’t go up the typical way on the tram — we walked up! I’ve been to the Peak a few times so on this trip, I wanted to try a new but old school way.

We took the more scenic route starting from Pok Fu Lam Reservoir. Apparently this was not the most challenging route to the Peak, but it was still a continuous uphill trek and I was quite sweaty by the time we reached the top. It was refreshing being in the trees. I couldn’t imagine walking uphill before the tram was built. This must partially explain why originally the wealthy lived here, because they could hire someone to carry them up.

Slope stabilization work 🙂

Looking at the Reservoir from the top. I am told that my first ten months of life were spent in a building around the Reservoir.

The view from the Peak. It was a misty day, but it could have been worse.

The Peak Tower. I think this was being renovated the last time I visited the Peak.

We then started the circle walk around the Peak from Lugard Road.

We cut the circle path short and walked down the Pinewood Battery trail. The Pinewood Battery was destroyed by the Japanese in WW2 and never rebuilt. It was later converted into a picnic site.

City Boundary of the old City of Victoria, the former name of the city on HK Island.

Good map showing where we went. I think we covered everything except for Harlech Road.

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