Look Hong Kong, you know I love you, right? We’ve been together for half a lifetime, you’ve treated me well (except for that old lady who kept furiously jabbing her bony elbow into my ribs on the tram that day), and you’ve been kind enough to provide me with beer 24/7.

But there’s something serious we have to talk about. Hong Kong, baby, you just don’t know how to walk down a street.

The correct way is simple enough and it follows the rule of the road. The car driving straight ahead has right of way, and drivers wishing to turn across the path of that car must first wait until it has passed.

Imagine if you drove the way you walk – turning directly and without warning into the path of an oncoming vehicle that is travelling straight ahead, and staring at your feet as you force that car to come to a screeching halt. It wouldn’t work, right babe?

I wouldn’t bring this up if I didn’t feel our relationship was strong enough, and I don’t want to rant about it, but something has to be said. These days I feel like I’m trapped in some kind of virtual-reality game of Pac-Man, bobbing and weaving through a smoggy human maze as I attempt to get from A to B.

Walking dead slowing Hong Kong down

A friend once told me of the time he arrived in a deserted Central MTR station late one night on the last train. Well, it was deserted apart from one other person, who, of course, managed to turn suddenly into his path and bump into him as he walked in a straight line to the turnstiles.

Common courtesy isn’t quite so common in Hong Kong

The other week, when I had to leave you and pay a quick visit to Singapore, I felt that something was different. It took me a while to realise it but not once did anybody walk into me during the three days I was there.

Rude awakening: Chinese tourists have the money, but not the manners

Don’t worry, I’d never leave you for that Plain Jane, but, seriously, if she can manage it, why can’t you?

Anyway, let’s talk about this walking thing over a few beers outside Club Seven tonight. Until then, can you please take a look at this little diagram explaining what I’m talking about?