distinctly hong kong

January 26, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

A number of months ago, I went back to New York for the first time since I left. It was odd feeling like a stranger in a city that was and still is so familiar. You realize there’s certain things, idiosyncratic things that you miss and you crave aside from the people you love and the amazing food. Diversity was one that I never really thought about. You can walk down 9th Ave in Hell’s Kitchen and hear 5 different languages within a few blocks.

Someone asked me the other day, what do you have in Hong Kong that you don’t have in New York and after thinking about it for a while, I replied, “a different kind of diversity.”  Hong Kong’s largely Chinese, (Cantonese) with a  rising number of Mandarin speaking folks coming in from Mainland China.

However, there’s also an amazing diversity of expats from all over the world. Kids with parents from UK, Australia, Canada, US who were born in Hong Kong, grew up in international schools and went to Uni (Uni, not college) abroad. HK locals who get sent to boarding school and come back with impeccable British English. People who grew up all over the world and come here for work. Sub-cultures. Macro cultures. Worlds within worlds. Hong Kong has a degree of diversity of Chinese people that I’ve never seen before. Third culture kids - ethnically Chinese people who local Chinese see as outsiders, It’s quite incredible.

 


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