Spirit of Hong Kong

Spirit of Hong Kong

Spirit of Hong Kong is a series that looks behind the scenes of one of Asia's largest and most vibrant cities by focusing on those whose contributions often go unnoticed yet are vital to the everyday success of Hong Kong. 

Ballet dancer So Hon-wah pays it forward to the next generation

So Hon-wah at the barre in his Youth Ballet of Asia studio housed within an old North Point factory building. Photo: Jonathan Wong

Amid the smell of sweet buns and dried seafood, surrounded by old Hong Kong-style tenement and factory buildings, wander the ballerinas in training. Dressed in sweats and layers of comfortable, if not raggedy, clothing, they weave their way in and out of the street traffic to their destination - the studio of the Youth Ballet of Asia.

Monday, 2 December, 2013, 12:19pm

Meet the arborist who keeps Hong Kong's giants safe

Vick Cheng Kwok-keung measures a tree trunk in Kowloon Park, Tsim Sha Tsui. Old trees will be rare in Hong Kong, he says. Photo: Felix Wong

A tree knows when it has lost a limb. If it has been poorly pruned and the branches start sprouting green shoots, that's the tree's survival mechanism and it is crying out for help.

This lesson came from arborist Vick Cheng Kwok-keung on a walk around Kowloon Park in Tsim Sha Tsui to demonstrate how to spot a tree in distress.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 1 comment

Why is Hong Kong last frontier for bamboo scaffolders?

Shouldering the frame: Scaffolder Anson Yan, 31, carries a supply of bamboo rods. Photo: Nora Tam

In Hong Kong - the last frontier of bamboo scaffolding - where tall, skinny buildings shoot up daily, more than five million bamboo rods, each six to seven metres long, are used every year by the construction industry.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 2 comments

Hospital hair doctor cuts for free at Grantham Hospital

Because they're worth it: Beauty parlour owner Jenny Law, 62, gives Lam Choi-shing, 78, a close shave at Grantham Hospital. Photo: Dickson Lee

You couldn't pay most people in Hong Kong to cut someone else's ear hairs or toenails. But there is one woman who has been performing this service for the elderly and hospital patients for the past 27 years - for free. Jenny Law Chun-heung, 62, transforms the quiet halls of Grantham Hospital in Wong Chuk Hang into a hair salon every second Thursday of the month.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 5 comments