So six months after I moved to Hong Kong in 1994, my parents visited me over winter break. We spent a week there and one in Singapore. It wasn’t their first time visiting me in Hong Kong (that happened in 1990-91 when I was an exchange student), but this time was different. Very different.
What they saw was this:
I’d adapted to the mobile phone culture of Hong Kong. This model only allowed me to call out. It was a pager, too.
With a fellow grad student from central China, we dined at local restaurants where the menus were tacked to the walls.
The four of us wandered around night markets. I think this might be the Jade Market in Yau Ma Tei, where we heard Cantonese opera in little stalls along Temple Street.
In Repulse Bay, my mom once said it would be nice if I could marry a fancy expat. Then maybe I could live in a posh flat or house near the sea. That must have been on an earlier trip to Hong Kong in 1990. Here we are at another beach on Hong Kong Island, perhaps Shek O. I would have a big surprise for them. And it had nothing to do whatsoever with beachfront properties.
I broke the news that I was engaged to that male student from central China. In all my letters to my parents, I’d never mentioned I was even dating.