I’ve Seen Things…

“…you people wouldn’t believe”

OK – maybe you would 🙂

As some folks will recognise, that’s a part of – in my opinion – one of the best scenes in a movie, and it’s from my favourite Science Fiction movie of all time – Blade Runner.

Yes, yes – I know it’s been a while since the initial post asking you to “Watch This Space” – time does tend to fly – and what is time to a Rabbit?

You did read it – didn’t you?  No?

It’s on this blog space along with the About page. You DID see the About page? No?? Sheesh good reader – what have you been doing?

Yes that’s it – the big About link above this…No not now!

Oh – you’ve gone – don’t worry I’ll wait until you’re back…ho dee hum…

Oh hiya – you’re back. So now you know all about this Rabbit 🙂  Well not all – us bunnies have to keep something back to fill this blog with!

“…All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain…”
— Roy Batty, Nexus 6 Replicant

Part of my Digital Footprints philosophy is that we find ourselves in a special time for information and if we don’t share it it may be lost – like tears in rain…

There’s always been a vast oral tradition in most nations to teach life lessons, laws and common sense.

As the modern family emerged I think that the passing on of stories is not as common as it was.  My Mum and Dad used to tell stories to us of their experiences and more often than not they were repeats – but that wasn’t the point.  It was them passing on those memories to the next generation.

I believe that blogs allow that tradition to be continued on a global scale and outside of your immediate family.   Global tribe and all that 🙂

So, to start my own trail of footprints I’d like to take you back to the beginning…of this post that is 🙂

Blade Runner

If you’ve never seen the film, then please look it up.

One of the opening scenes sees Harrison Ford – the main character of the movie – waiting at an outside market for a seat to come free.  The market is based on Chinese / Japanese places and it’s raining.  He finally gets called over when a place comes free and orders some street food.

For me, this has a double whammy. First – it’s my favourite sci-fi film – the second is that it’s a real (well almost) memory for this Rabbit.

From 1975 through 1978 I was lucky enough to live in Hong Kong.  That for an 8 year old was amazing.

The sights, smells and experiences will make up some future posts I think.

It was such a different place for someone that’s only lived in the UK (OK – I was born in Singapore – but don’t remember anything – hey I was a baby! I didn’t do the tourist thing!)

For now – street food!

My big brother was at boarding school in the UK when we moved to Hong Kong, so I only saw him during the holidays when he came across.  When he was there though we had a pretty regular routine of sneaking out at night.  Our parents knew and knew that we’d be safe.

OK – it’s Hong Kong, it’s the mid-70’s and we were walking around Poor Man’s Market (close to the Macau Ferry Pier) in the Central district.  Oh yeah – it’s midnight or later!

Like I said, I was lucky.

The street food places were just like that scene in Blade Runner – though maybe not quite so tidy – they were so much more real.

Sometimes we picked up treats like satay seafood balls soaked in sticky satay sauce and walked around looking at the food or the other stalls that were selling items ranging from toys through to clothes and electronics.

Often we’d sit down at a stall, order using our poor Cantonese that was assisted – or not – by a bad European accent and pointing.  We tended to get what we ordered (most of the time) and duly poured hot green tea over the offered chop sticks to clean them. It’s what the locals did so we tended to follow suit and it soon marked us as non-tourists, just two folks wanting to eat great food in the middle of the night.

If I close my eyes and think hard, aaah – oh yeah – this Rabbit can hear the sizzling woks mixed with the general chatter of Cantonese, some English from fellow night owls or adventurous tourists and the inevitable click-clack of someone playing Mahjong.

The smell of freshly cooked food, the garlic and ginger and the secret ingredients that each street chef seemed to have that made their productions that little bit more special than their neighbours.

Being fair minded people, my Big Bro and I tried to sample as much as possible – well, one must sample and make a considered opinion and that’s why we did it – honest!

OK, OK – I fib a little – this baby Rabbit tended to just eat anything and everything and the opportunity of lots of sticky, spicy, sweet – or sometimes – unknown street food was heaven on a street in the middle of the Far East.

Satay, noodles, rice, congee (yes I liked congee – so sue me!) – freshly steamed dim sum at some stalls, pieces of golden red duck at others – the choice seemed endless.  I didn’t take to chicken feet – tried them, but too fiddly – too many bones.  I tended to try as many new things as possible, or else how would I know if I liked them or not?

The reaction of the stall owners was interesting to observe.

Imagine the scene, two young European lads turn up at your stall, sit down and begin to order in what can only be called pigeon Cantonese but know the names of most of the items or point to others.

They drink green tea or the ubiquitous Coke or 7-Up and really enjoy the food.  There were often double takes and then when we started to eat Chinese style (holding bowls below the chin and shovelling in food) and didn’t rush the food but sat, appreciating it and just blending in like any other customer, well we got accepted pretty quickly and often were remembered on future visits.

I think these visits to the outside food markets of Hong Kong fuelled my love of street food and the on-going habit of trying to find the out of the way places where tourists aren’t often found, but the best food is.

So my readers, digital footprint one.

More to come – I’ll tell you more about Hong Kong memories and some of the eateries that I visited there and since then.

But for now – my thanks for your reading of this post – and I hope you leave some footprints of your own.

Take care

— The Rambling Rabbit

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