How’s it going nature lovers?
Tired of trundling through the same old HK shopping malls? Had it up here with your neighbour’s favourite hobby: drilling? Want to maim meandering Aunty Ma as she obliviously stymies your best efforts to get around her on the footpath? Sick of the smog, scum, filth, noise, stink, skank, rank, crowd, loud, rude, crude food, grey, drab, choke of the city? Need some fresh air, the happy snap of twigs under your feet and the sun on your back?
Well in Hong Kong, you’re fuck out of luck because the hiking trails and country parks here are abominations.
You can’t really knock a person, I suppose, who likes to get outside and do something a bit active. But in Hong Kong…you can…and I will.
Chances are in HK, anyone you’re going to see out on one of the hiking trails, whether they be walking, running, flying a model plane or chasing butterflies…is an absolute hands down annoying prick.
Hong Kong hikers like to fan out shoulder to shoulder on trails perfectly oblivious to everything but their fear of insects, their sun paranoia and their own raucous conversations about food. Nature is something to be hated and defeated to these people. They blot out the sun because they don’t want people to think they’re ditch squatting farmers, they mock nature’s harmonious frequency with objectionable B-Grade Cantonese radio music blaring from their heavily laden specialty hiking utility belts…they litter like it’s a sport, they laugh at cattle, fear dirt, run away from flies and generally combat any semblance of peace and tranquility by clapping and squealing and yelling about the latest Cafe de Coral discount vouchers they got with their recent herculean toilet paper purchase.
Hong Kong people are so puzzled and intimidated by nature that an hours bush walk, often on fully paved paths, requires store bought, titanium trekking poles, deluxe backpacks, heavy duty hiking boots, skin tight lycra suits emblazoned with corporate slogans and logos, mosquito patches, thousands of tissues, heart rate beepers, loud radios, enough food & drink to sink a battleship, surgical face masks to fight dust and full scale walkie talkie communications systems. Basically, the idea is to dress like you’re about to tackle K2.
When it’s not too hot the paths are choked with scores of these nuts making their way like lemmings either to a seedy BBQ pit where they can give new meaning to the problem of disposable utensil waste or to some restaurant at the end of the trail where they will wail and cry and jump up and down and clap and squeal ecstatically when they are served a warm cup of water with a flower in it.
Sometimes the best thing you can do in HK to get away from it all is just to stay at home with your fingers in your ears and pray that Mr Chan next door hasn’t bought a new set of drill bits he wants to try out for a few hours or so.
If you do bite the old bullet and decide to have a crack…here’s the HK Country Parks complaint hotline number: