Occupy Central

Culture & Leisure

All I Want for Christmas is Food: Delighting Food Tours, Sydney

by Julianna Wu Hanging out in a block that’s full of nice snacks and cuisines in a sunny day, eat whatever you like until you can’t have anymore. This is every foodie’s dream. Especially in a city like Sydney, which has more than 20 different cultures and regions, which means, over 20 different kinds of food and cuisine? In this huge city that’s approximately eleven times bigger than Hong Kong, foodies are luckily enough to have professionals that would lead them through streets and corners to find delicacies, teach them how to eat properly, and most importantly, tell them the stories behind the food and the reason why it exists. Tours led customers through various cultures’ authentic restaurants and foods were started in Sydney a decade ago. Eventually it grows into a popular thing across the city. Now Sydney has up to 17 different organizations offering nearly 100 food tours around the city: ranging from focus tours on wine or chocolate to certain culture’s food. Taste Food Tour is one of the companies that bring customers into the broad Western suburbs of the city for Persian, South-east Asia and other more kinds of foods with a price ranging from 400 to 600 HKD for an adult. The tour of Babylonian Delights - Fairfield for example, includes two sets of meal, two typical snacks stores, one grocery shop of the Persian or Turkish culture as well as a rich explanation of the culture background and how do people make food within a walking distance of the local suburb Fairfield. The tours’ schedule has been set to meet different kinds of customers’ need. Food tours in Chinatown, which is a hot tourism spot, are set during weekdays for the convenience of travelers. While far Western or outer central city food tours are …

Photo Essay

Americans remember: 15 years after 911 in New York

  • 2016-11-10

The second Sunday of September marks the 15th anniversary of the 911 terror attack by Henry Wong Many memorial events were held around New York city, to mourn and remind Americans of their loss. Apart from the major 911 memorial ceremony which held the morning at Ground Zero (former World Trade Center site), memorial events were held at St. Paul’s Chapel and other places as well. A parade was also organised by the New York City Police Department to honour the police officers who scarified their lives in this terrorist attack. “I feel that more people have come to the memorial events this year,”said Alexandra De Rose outside the 911 Memorial and Museum, “I was eight when it happened.” Ms Rose, 23 years old, is an Italian who often visits her family members living in New York. “I remembered I was in school when it happened. It really resonates with us because a lot of the victims were Italian American,”Rose said. “I was little when it happened. When I saw these images on TV, I could not really comprehend, I just thought it was horrible,”she said. Ms Rose thought the national security has become better after the attack, especially security check at the airport.   (Edited by Aaron Au)

The Night Before Election - Taiwan Election 2016

  • 2016-01-21

  Tsai Ing-wen (Democratic Progressive Party) Tsai Ing-wen, presidential candidate of the DPP, finished her election campaign in front of the Presidential Palace in Taipei this evening. Speaking to thousands of supporters, she said their votes will be the first step towards reform. "We are here not to defeat any party. We are here to fight against the dilemma confronted with our country," she said. Democracy, she said, is not just about elections but about people's everyday life. "Go back to your home towns and vote," she told them. "The vote you cast tomorrow will bring a new era in politics, the economy and a new future for Taiwan," Tsai said. By law, election campaigns in Taiwan must end by midnight. The voting will begin at 8 am on January 16.   Eric Chu Li-luan (Kuomintang)  Eric Chu Li-luan of the KMT, who has spent the past two weeks sweeping through rallies across Taiwan, ended his campaign in Taipei this evening, in the city where he is the mayor. Chu visited the eight legislative constituencies in Taipei today and attended a climactic rally in Taichung His final stop was Banqiao Stadium in New Taipei where he's joined by other KMT leaders,including the former vice president Lien Chan. In the rally, Chu admitted that the KMT has made a lot of mistakes. However, he hoped the Taiwan people can give him as well as the KMT another chance He also expressed his view towards the union of the pan-blue camp. "Regardless of whether it is the KMT, the People First Party or the New Party, the pan-blue camp should be united and construct a better Taiwan." Wang Ju-hsuan, 54, the vice president candidate of KMT, said KMT's past policies have protected women by making the sexual harassment prevention law and family …

“Rats in Central” overcome challenges and raise fund

  • 2015-10-28

By Tsui-see Au Yeung It is the tenth year that "rats" were running around the skyscrapers in Central, this time joined by savage, minions and muscular supermen. Yesterday's Central Rat Race was a fun run held annually to raise money for mental health causes. About 500 participants dressed up in costumes ran through obstacle courses, which symbolised the challenges faced by those working in the business centre. The highlight was a tough team relay with eight legs joined by members of various companies. Participants said this charity event reflected what happened inside the tall buildings in Central: corporate employees work hand-in-hand to tackle the enormous pressure of Hong Kong's business world. Children and representatives from mental-health-focused organisations competed in alternative races. The money raised would go to Mindset, a registered charity with goals to promote mental health and help people suffering from mental illness.   (Edited by Viola Zhou. Copy-edited by Joey Hung.)  

Judicial review a controversial next step for supporters of Johannes Chan

  • 2015-10-05

By Joanne Lee   As various groups seek to overturn the decision preventing Johannes Chan from becoming the deputy head of the University of Hong Kong, judicial review remains an option under debate. After Johannes Chan’s appointment of pro-vice-chancellor was rejected in a 12-8 vote by HKU’s governing council, the Student Union president Billy Fung Jing-en said the group was considering judicial review to resolve the case. However, most of Professor Chan’s supporters are not enthusiastic about this proposal. Kevin Yam Kin-fung, convenor of Progressive Lawyers Group, said the student union has the autonomy to apply for judicial review and he respects their decision, but the group will not provide any legal assistance. HKU Alumni Concern Group member Patrick Wong Chun-sing said whether to apply for a judicial review depends on Professor Chan’s will. “As far as I know, Professor Chan has expressed that he does not have the intention of doing it in a RTHK radio programme,” Mr Wong said. Nevertheless, some are open to the suggestion. Carmen Chan Wai-men, a HKU alumnus who co-organised a protest against the council’s decision on Sunday, shows support for the Student Union. “I don't know much about the legal system, so I can’t tell if a judicial review would be plausible,” Ms Chan said at the protest. “But I support the student union’s decision.” HKU’s governing council stays silent towards the plan. Council member Lo Chung-mau said he had expressed his view in his statement and declined to comment further. However, he restated that Mr Fung’s action would bring major impact to Professor Chan. HKUST Professor Francis Lui Ting-ming, who once publicly advised Professor Chan to withdraw from the selection process because of Chan’s clear political stance, wrote in a recent column that a judicial review would not alter the council’s decision. The …

Society & Politics

National Day wrap-up: another day of post-Occupy political debate

By Charlotte Yang and Christy Leung   Even before the national anthem was played for the Flag Raising Ceremony at 8 am, protestors outside Golden Bauhinia Square were ready with their five-star flags, colonial flags, banners and yellow umbrellas. Police officers were nervously standing by. As the Hong Kong government celebrates the 66th Chinese National Day with ceremonies, concerts and fireworks, various political groups are seizing the opportunity to voice their demands in the post-Occupy era. This morning in Wanchai, about 20 activists led by lawmaker Leung Kwok-hung protested to demand that the Communist Party rehabilitate Tiananmen victims and release jailed human rights lawyers in the mainland. They were carrying yellow umbrellas and coffins representing those who died due to the military crackdown in 1989. On the other side of the road, young activists who call themselves “localists” held different opinions. People wearing masks and waving colonial flags said they were not Chinese and democracy in China was not Hong Kong’s business. Their separatist sentiment irritated members of a pro-Beijing group, who brought out national flags and yelled “Go Away” at their opponents. Conflicts did not end as people began leaving Wanchai. Right after the ceremony, Tiananmen Mothers, along with other pan-democratic groups, staged a Tiananmen-focused march towards the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government. Along the way, participants got involved in quarrels with people carrying Chinese flags, who accused the democrats of “messing up Hong Kong”. Meanwhile in Tsim Sha Tsui, about 100 democracy advocates gathered to raise awareness of defending the city’s core values. “Rule of law, press freedom, everything is getting worse,” said one of the organisers, hedge fund manager Edward Chin Chi-kin, “It is not really a day to celebrate the National Day. It's a day to mourn if China starts premature influence over Hong …

Society & Politics

A year after : Umbrella Movement

  • 2015-09-28

By Janet Sun, Fred Lai, Tanya McGovern and Crystal Tse It is the one year after the police fired tear gas to disperse pro-democracy protesters in Admiralty, followed by a 79-day civil disobedience campaign named the Umbrella Movement. From September 28 last year, thousands took to the streets and occupied the busiest business districts. Yellow umbrellas representing the movement became a new logo of Hong Kong. The movement was an attempt to gain the right of electing Hong Kong’s chief executive democratically. Protesters accused a Beijing-backed political reform proposal of being a “fake universal suffrage” for requiring the candidates to be filtered before entering the public vote. Earlier in June this year, the Legislative Council rejected the controversial proposal, leaving no timeline for future discussion on political reform. On the first anniversary of the Umbrella Movement, political groups and individual protesters are heading towards Admiralty again. Some are trying to bring back memories, and many are coming up with their own plans of what Hong Kongers should do next. People's Power Tam Tak-chi tells TYR why the party called off the occupy plan. Follow TYR reporters for the latest updates on the 1st anniversary of Umbrella Movement. Yellow Umbrella Blossoms @tyr_mag pic.twitter.com/eqNabAVkwJ — Fred Lai (@Fredlai_) September 28, 2015 Police warning Chan Tak Chi stop provoking ppl to crash into the police front line" @tyr_mag pic.twitter.com/xvKapMHprd — Fred Lai (@Fredlai_) September 28, 2015 Police warning protestors and journalists not to attempt to breakthrough the security at Harcourt Road pic.twitter.com/38OyLffR8L — Crystal Tse (@crystalttc) September 28, 2015 Participants gathering at Lennon Wall pic.twitter.com/m7X1DnZ58R — Fred Lai (@Fredlai_) September 28, 2015 Yellow Umbrella Christian Base Community pray in memory of OC outside LegCo Complex @tyr_mag pic.twitter.com/wRzVsgAW86 — Fred Lai (@Fredlai_) September 28, 2015 The group then set up sign-up station under Canal …

Culture & Leisure

[Video] Tai Hang Fire Dragon Dance as a Mid-Autumn blessing for peace

By ShanShan Kao   Fire and smoke mix with festival atmosphere through the backstreets of Tai Hang, locals dancing a "fire dragon" accompanied with firecrackers and drum beats. It all started from a tale around 100 years ago in a Hakka fisherman village, Tai Hang, where a mysterious python brought a plague into the village. To ward off the disease, villagers made a huge dragon with straw and covered it with lit incense sticks and danced for three days and nights on the evening of the 14th, 15th and 16th of the eighth lunar month. The ritual keeps until today with a whopping 300 performers, 72,000 incense sticks and a 67-metre dragon, with its head alone weighs 48kg. Mr Vicky Wong, the dragon head leader said the most difficult part is that the fire dragon head is heavy. "You have to pass it to another person after holding it for a while." He said. "We do this to inherit and pass on the cultural heritage of China. I've been dancing the fire dragon fot many years." He added. This tradition has become part of China's official intangible cultural heritage since 2009.  

Culture & Leisure

[Video] Chinese Ghost Festival for Traditional Chiu Chow Community

By Sharon Tang   People celebrate Halloween, the Western “ghost festival”, by putting up costumes and be a part of the crowd. Funny as it is, the Chinese ghost festival is treated with more restraints as some may see it as a taboo and wish not to talk about ghosts. This year's Yulan Festival of the Chiu Chow Community was held in Tai Kok Tsui, from Aug 23-25. Tracing back to 46 years ago, the Chiu Chow people has already started the “Yulan Festival”. In the festival, descendants burn joss sticks to worship gods, burn paper money to their ancestors. Lots people, regardless their origins, also burn paper money for “street ghosts”. This is to show their respects to the ghosts so that they could keep themselves safe. More interesting is, there is a special Chinese opera performance as a way to entertain the “ghosts”. According to the Chinese tradition and the Lunar calendar, July is the month when the “ghost door” opens, which means the ghosts are allowed to come out to the human grounds. Never should you think this event is dark and depressing. In fact, it is meaningful and joyful where different Chiu Chow families gather and chat about their lives. It is also a significant symbol showing how united the Chiu Chow people are. “Standing in the shoes of us Chiu Chow people, we unite in such a event,” said Mr Lum Wing-fat, a member of the Yulan Festival of the Chiu Chow Community Committee. “Sometimes we meet each other in the neighbourhood and forgot their names, or even do not know them.” “But when all of us gather here, we get along and work together closely.” He said. In the old days when lives were poor and people had few to eat, the Yulan Festival has …

[Video] Old Landscape, New Business Model

  • 2015-09-04

  By Arisa Lai   GoodPoint, a four-storey heritage complex, is a lifestyle hub newly opened on February 12, 2015 after its revitalization. Operated by four social enterprises and community organizations, it is located in prime area of Flower Market in Prince Edward. “With a French architecture design, GoodPoint is defined as a grade II historic building and it is managed by Hong Kong Council of Community Service (HKCSS) under the Heritage Preservation and Revitalization Scheme.” said Ms Tuet, HSBC Social Enterprise Business Centre (HSBC SEBC) manager of HKCSS. Four operators, namely “Zen in Five Seasons”, “WECONS”, “Running Horse Lantern Limited”, and “ELCHK Essence Hub”, each occupied one floor from the ground to the third respectively in order to satisfying different social needs, Ms Tuet said. “Something special about social enterprises is that not only do they make business, but also promote a social value concept,” said Ms Alison Yuen, HSBC SEBC Programme Executive of HKCSS. “Like we also organize public visiting tours [to bring people in].” “The best thing is that this heritage building is open to public, instead of being turned to a private property.” Ms Yuen added. Some of the fascinating elements include the Art Deco in this building, which emphasizes simple lines, detailed carving and repetitive patterns as well as the ventilated ceiling. On the first floor WECONS collaborated nine communities to promote the idea of healthy living, with the aim of preservation and inheritance, according to Fair Circle Project Officer Mr Ernest Wong, the representative of the proprietors. “We hope this is not only a spot for selling goods but also a platform for people to engage in our concepts, like socioeconomic justice.” Mr Wong added. In the renovating stage damage or modification to the building are avoided, Mr Wong mentioned. No nail was drilled into …