I return, and as a lover who, after a lengthy period apart, reunites with his beloved, I search for all those familiar signs to connect my memory with what I now see. Thus, I wander through your wet markets, savor your haute cuisine, and listen in on the buskers nearby. It is not the sensory enjoyment that I relish per se, but the memories that are inextricably linked to them that provide comfort.
Some may see an urban Wasteland; but with each rusted bolt and murky sewer, your every pulse reminds me of where I came from, tells me where I stand, and perhaps, if I am attentive, shows me where I am heading.
And so, Hong Kong, I love you.
“A world that can be explained by reasoning, however faulty, is a familiar world. But in a universe that is suddenly deprived of illusions and of light, man feels a stranger. His is an irremediable exile, because he is deprived of memories of a lost homeland as much as he lacks the hope of a promised land to come.”
–Albert Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus