Dementia Story 2
Days of Our Lives
“Simplicity is best.” Lady Rose likes things to be symmetrically and neatly organised. When she was young, she loved traveling. She has been to Europe and Shanghai. She loved adventures and exciting games such as the roller coaster. Nowadays, she plays mahjong games on the computer every day.
“Now buying a flat can only be a dream for the young !” - A quote from Lady Rose
A strong man from Chaozhou, Brother Tak’s smile is as bright as the sun. He was once a firefighter. Later, he became a bus driver. Football is his favourite sport. One of his best memories as a forward was playing against the South China Football Team.
Time, year or date means nothing to her now. She only remembers her times spent with family, especially when she knitted for them. Knitting Grandma spent the first half of her life living in Sham Shui Po. Later, she got married and moved to North Point. Her daily routine starts with having oatmeal or congee in the morning, followed by practising tai chi, watching the news on television, and taking a walk at the park. At noon, she meets up with her younger sister. (She has six siblings in total.) Together, they take the bus to the elderly centre to have fun there until til four in the afternoon. She goes to bed at eight o’clock every day .
She was born in Hong Kong but moved to the Bairro Horta da Mitra area in Macau after getting married. Throughout her life, she has been constantly traveling between Hong Kong and Macau. She has three sons and two daughters, and her daughters are her favourites, since they care for her and treat her the best. (One of them bought her a pink jacket!) She writes beautifully because in the old days, she worked in a fountain pen factory and attended evening Chinese classes after work.
She came to Hong Kong at the age of 28 and lived in one of the squatter huts in Shau Kei Wan. However, one year, a fire burned the whole hillside. She then moved to Chai Wan. Currently, she lives in North Point with her eldest son who is a bus driver. This means that she has the privilege of free bus rides. Every day, she takes the bus to Quarry Bay to buy zongzi (sticky rice dumplings).
Mr. Cow has been in Hong Kong for decades. Before, he worked in his hometown as a farmer in a cooperative. In the old days, people had to rely on cows to work in the fields. After he came to Hong Kong, he worked in the factory and started handling machinery work. He then realised that machines had tempers even worse than that of cows! He worked in factories that manufactured sweaters and telescopes. When he arrived Hong Kong, he had no idea where the city was actually located. He only remembered seeing
‘ printed on the telescopes at that time. Later, as people became more confident in the products of Hong Kong, the phrase changed to ‘Made in Hong Kong’. Now, his favourite activity is to watch movies at Sunbeam Theatre or watch television at home.
Her home would rock slightly because when she fished in the past, the boat was her home.
He has a street stall selling T-shirts at Chun Yeung Street, North Point, which opens from 7am to 9pm every day, all year round except Chinese New Year’s Day. His wife would come to help. When she sits in the stall, she looks like a beautiful lily standing out among numerous plants in a garden. They have a son and a daughter. Going to the dim sum restaurant with their children is their favourite activity every week.
In the era when marriages were arranged by parents, a stranger could suddenly become a spouse. That was what happened to May. A few years after getting an arranged marriage, May came to Hong Kong at the age of 20, while her husband went to the Philippines.Since then, her closest one became a stranger again. She worked at a garment factory in Hong Kong. Her duty was to undergo quality check of the finished garments at the final stage of the manufacturing process.
“Meow!” People who visit this area should try to follow the sounds of the cats, and they may end up reaching the bookstore owned by Grandma Sacred Lily’s children! The number of cats would not exceed that of the books, but on a quiet afternoon, they may exceed the number of visitors at the bookstore. There is also a white Persian cat that one must not miss! Some say that whenever spring arrives, the cat would start speaking in mandarin. However, that could be a confusion from the neighbours - they might have mixed up memories of Grandma Sacred Lily’s mandarin classes with that of the cat.
Nicknamed the ‘Mahjong Queen’, she grew up in Sheung Wan. Her husband owned a hair salon while her job was to take care of their children at home. When her husband returned from work, the couple’s favourite activity was to go to Tai Ping Theatre or Ko Shing Theatre to watch Cantonese operas featuring the opera diva, Fong Yim Fun. Mahjong Queen recalled, in that era, children were easy to satisfy. They enjoyed skipping ropes and throwing pebbles. Mahjong Queen currently lives in Shek Tong Tsui and she goes to the elderly centre for mahjong and exercise every day. Her favourite is using the exercise bike.
Sir Butterfly cares much about the way he dresses. He likes to wear a black shirt, black trousers, a pair of sneakers and a trilby. He had a day job as an accountant. After work, however, he would turn into a photographer. He received a number of awards in photography and he would take his students to Hong Kong’s outlying islands to practice photography. Sir Butterfly taught himself photography in the 1950s. His favourite works of his own include River in a Winter Morning, which combines images of the Shing Mun River and tall trees, and another work that combines images with a circus theme. He liked to use Hasselblad cameras and process films in a dark room when he was young. Nowadays, he carries a digital camera with him every day to take pictures of daily life events. He takes pictures with wonderful composition skills no matter his subjects are people, objects or scenes.
Brother Shek was born in Lan Kwai Fong, Central. He would play with other children alongside the road when he was small. He worked as an ivory sculptor when when he was young, after learning the skills from his father. His signature work was an ivory rose. Later, however, Hong Kong banned ivory import, and the field of ivory carving gradually declined. Brother Shek had no option but to become a construction worker who moved marble. Years of tough labour have made Brother Shi physically strained with injuries and pain. His favourite activity after work was watching movies, especially those based on the stories of Bruce Lee and The Butterfly Lovers.
She recalled there were various kinds of sewing work in the old days, most of which were making men’s shirts and trousers.Sewing was all she did. She had to take the ferry and then the bus to reach the factory every day. Her entertainment included watching movies, listening to songs of singer Teresa Teng, and watching the Cantonese opera, Princess Chang Ping. Now that she has retired, she goes to the elderly centre to play mahjong during the day and she wins a lot!
Do you know our Sleeping Beauty is over 90 years old? When she gets up, she looks energetic, but sometimes when she feels tired, she needs to take a nap. Sleeping Beauty’s favourite things include the Buddha, lucky bamboo and singer Teresa Teng! If you wish to talk to her, remember to speak in the TeochewChaozhou dialect!