關於維城界石與1903年

Friday, May 10, 2019|
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上個月尾,我們進行了期待已久,堪稱「勞師動眾」的<活現五年「重行」系列:《點對點》× 活現香港 維城界石導賞團>。早上在戲院上映五週年特別放映的《點對點》,下午是界石導賞團。導賞員請了《點對點》導演黃浩然,重新回到他首部電影拍攝現場,五年後,他的第二套電影DVD 也出了,景物變化不少,尤幸這些界石還在。另一位主力講者是《電影現場之旅》作者奇夫先生,他既是電影迷,也是一個歷史痴。黃浩然說:「香港地只有兩個痴線佬,可以憑任何一套戲的任何一格畫面,便知道真實場地和歷史故事,其中一個就是奇夫。」能請到他們一起探訪六個界石,算是對得起站在香港邊緣100 年的界石們了。

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說「勞師動眾」,除了配合放映安排,因報名人數多,我們安排了兩部28 座旅遊巴,因為有些路段太窄,大旅遊巴進不去,幸好兩位司機靈活應對交通情況,使每一站的行程都沒有誤點。原本界石團計劃在早一日進行,結果那天滂沱大雨,而界石團當日,不雨也不曬,清風陣陣,使需要點體力的導賞團的氣氛「幸福」得多。最後導賞團沒有over run ,準備了的都完成了,由跑馬地走到西寧街,我們與團友笑說,天時地利人和讓大家完成了mission impossible

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即使辦一個這樣的活動對我們來說很有挑戰性,但是能見證一行幾十人與六個界石相遇,是一件讓我們感動又激動的事情。古跡存在的意義,在於他們與今世現在的人繼續發生不完的故事。因為我們不遺忘,不忘記界石豎立的1903 年,記得城市的發現,因而更珍惜現在與未來。

我們實在很高興見到這些像是不起眼的,沒有被裝裱高掛的百年文物,沒有被遺忘。

這個導賞團,感謝奇夫先生的用心策劃,從頭到尾像一本嚴謹的書,有序言,分了不同章節,借著六個界石細說這個城市來路,由一片死地,重生,然後繁盛起來,成為你和我今天的香港。我們今天常說「The city is dying 」,原來一個世紀以前的香港,的確是一片「死地」。1903 年香港總人口為32 萬,當時香港市面最重大的事件,是19 世紀末至20 世紀初多次爆發的鼠疫,共2 萬人死亡,即是每16 個香港人便有一個病死,有超過三分一人因此逃離香港,鼠疫重災區上環太平山一帶隨處是死屍,衛生環境不堪,香港民不聊生,一片死城。

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當時的政府決定重力整治香港市況,1903 年,政府頒布《醫務衛生及建築條例》,推行城市清潔、屋宇改造和防鼠患蚊患滋生和蔓延的計劃,至此香港的環境衛生才有較大改善。當時那些建築條例包括樓宇之前的距離,即是現在電視常出現的闊後巷場景,也是是因當時而產生。隨著全港性的條例強力執行,香港的城市規劃亦慢慢開始成形,政府需要劃定城市的邊界,我們看到的界石亦開始豎起,即使今天有些已不在原地,他們也曾經面直直地面向好幾代人,告訴他們說這裏就是香港的維多利亞城。

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1903 年香港電車開始鋪設路軌,同年港府致電殖民地部要求速建九廣鐵路,據聞當初的藍圖是一路能通穿歐亞。最高法院也在1903 年進行奠基禮,由當時港督卜力揭幕,英軍醫院也是1903 年開始興建。往後一百年間,香港由一座人人爭相逃離的死城,慢慢發展出完整的市內交通,對外經濟貿易,以及優良的法治與福利,人口遷入,成為一個繁盛的城市。

界石團當日,正是反引渡條例修訂大遊行,奇夫在導賞團的終章說:「香港由一個人人逃走的城,變成一個人人逃來的地方,今天又要逃走了,或者是被捉走。」會心一笑,能意會的,通了歷史,通了未來。2019 4 28 日,維城界石導賞團以半個感謝歷史的微笑,加上半個盡在無言的苦笑結束。

啟迪未來建築師:巴馬丹拿集團 × 活現香港 Inspiring Future Architects: P&T Group × Walk in Hong Kong

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有冇諗過四十年後嘅中環地標建築會係點嘅樣?Walk in Hong Kong 活現香港最近再次同屹立香港 150 年嘅建築師樓巴馬丹拿集團合作,將導賞團結合模型工作坊同建築師分享會,啟迪小朋友欣賞建築嘅唔同可能性,再將自己心目中嘅建築設計活現眼前,向成為未來建築師之路進發。唔知今日喺模型裏面見到嘅大廈,四十年後會唔會成真呢?

How would our CBD look like 40 years from now? Last month Walk in Hong Kong worked with architectural firm P&T Group to organize a series of walking tours, workshops and architects’ talks. Youngsters were able to walk into the skyscrapers of our city to appreciate their cutting-edge architectural features, before showcasing their creativity and imagination in the architectural designs they create with building blocks. Will the designs by these budding architects dominate the skyline of Hong Kong in 2059?

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城市,由無數建築師嘅夢想交織而成。香港歷史最悠久嘅建築事務所巴馬丹拿集團 1868 年起為我城「築夢」,一百五十年來成就中環無數建築。香港人非常熟悉嘅畢打行、怡和大廈(康樂大廈)、交易廣場、渣打銀行大廈等等,通通都係巴馬丹拿歷年來嘅作品。巴馬丹拿將最先進嘅建築技術引入香港,又將香港嘅獨特經驗帶到全世界。

Rome was not built in a day. It takes more than a century to shape a city. Likewise, it takes decades to realize an architect’s dream. Since 1868, architects and engineers at P&T Group (formerly Palmer and Turner) have been realizing their dreams in the course of incarnating Hong Kong’s urban landscape. P&T Group played a crucial role in designing the city’s skyline — over 20 existing buildings in Central, including Exchange Square, Jardine House, Bank of China Building and Standard Chartered Bank Building (SCBB). They are the masterpieces of P&T over the years. It introduced cutting-edge building technologies to Hong Kong while at the same time leveraging local expertise and knowhow in high-density developments around the world.

過去半年間,活現香港有幸同巴馬丹拿集團合作籌劃建築導賞團,帶領參加者重新認識中環區嘅建築同發展歷程。我哋翻箱倒籠檢閱巴馬丹拿歷代建築師嘅手稿同圖則,又訪問集團內嘅資深建築師,用導賞團訴說中環以至香港嘅建築故事。舊年 11、12 月舉行嘅「築城香港百五載:巴馬丹拿中區建築行」公眾導賞團深受歡迎,超額報名接近十倍!

Walk in Hong Kong is honoured to work with P&T Group to curate a series of architectural walking tours. We had the opportunity to dig into the firm’s archives of drawings and photos. We also interviewed key architects like Remo Riva, the chief architect of the Exchange Square and SCBB projects, and heard insider stories and lesser-known facts about P&T’s various works in Central. When we formally launched the resulting “150 Years Sculpting Hong Kong’s Skyline” public tours in November and December 2018, they were oversubscribed 10 times!

今年適逢第十六屆威尼斯國際建築雙年展香港回應展,巴馬丹拿集團同活現香港再次聯手,喺 3 至 4 月舉辦結合導賞團、工作坊同建築師分享會嘅一連串「城市之夢 。與未來建築師同行」活動,希望啟發年輕一代成為未來建築師。活動主打 10-15 歲嘅青少年,參加者首先參加導賞團,由我哋嘅導遊 Olivia 由中環建築出發認識基本建築概念,然後再喺展城館用積木堆砌心目中嘅新一代中環建築。見到參加者將公共空間、行人天橋系統呢啲喺導賞團介紹過嘅 P&T 創新意念用喺自己嘅設計裏面,Olivia 都非常之感動,大讚呢班未來建築師創意無限!

As part of the 16th Venice Biennale International Architecture Exhibition – Hong Kong Response Exhibition events, we adapted the public tour itinerary into a version that will inspire teenagers, and tied it with the architectural model workshops and architects’ sharing sessions P&T organized. Aspiring young participants had the chance to see the masterpieces by P&T architects and applied what they learn in designing the future cityscape. We are so glad to be part of this one-of-a-kind architectural education event.

 

Why are Chinese Vampires Better than Zombies and Mummies?

Wednesday, May 8, 2019|

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Are you afraid of zombies? Do mummies scare you away? If you are not daunted by the living dead, you must be a brilliant warrior when zombies attack. (Let’s hope they won’t.) But even the valiant may find Chinese vampires terrifying. Yes, the Chinese have their own vampires. They are drastically different from zombies and mummies in western popular culture. In addition, they are better than them in some sense. Here’s why.

Starting with their appearance, Chinese vampires look more dapper than western zombies and mummies. Zombies that rise from graves are usually covered in rags. As for zombies manufactured in biochemical experiments, they may wear dull patient clothes. Mummies do not have the best fashion sense either. Wrapped in white cloths, they appear less luxurious and mighty than Chinese vampires. Every Chinese vampire wears a uniform. The uniform resembles the ones worn by officials of the imperial court. A dragon is sewed on a silk cloth of midnight blue.

A key feature of Chinese vampires differentiates them from zombies and mummies. While the latter can walk, jump, and run, Chinese vampires only hop. Their bodies are so hard that they cannot bend their limbs and bodies. You may find it funny, but it proves that they overpower zombies and mummies. Calculation shows that jumping rope burns a lot more calories than running at 7 miles per hour. The same applies to the moving corpses too. Chinese vampires have the stamina to hop as long as they want, while zombies and mummies need to consume something when they are tired.

The discipline of Chinese vampires also deserves our respect. Legends have it that Chinese vampires hop in a line, stretching out their arms to touch the next’s shoulders. They rarely launch lone wolf attacks as zombies and mummies do. So you will definitely be overwhelmed by the assault of Chinese vampires.

Then how can we stop them? Sorry, you can’t. Zombies can be killed if you remove their heads or take out their hearts. Mummies will roam no more if you lock them up in pharaohs’ tombs. But the best fighter just can’t stop Chinese vampires on his or her own. The Chinese say you can only stop a vampire by sticking a yellow paper on his forehead. You have to ask a wizard, who has been trained for years, to write a spell on a yellow paper.

Alright, you already know so much that you’re not supposed to know. If you insist, Walk in Hong Kong can help you enrich yourself with the forbidden knowledge. We are offering ghost tours in Wan Chai. The Chinese have an unusual attitude towards ghosts. Their ancient saint Confucius taught them to be frightened and respectful to gods and ghosts alike. So there are abundant rituals to pay tribute to ghosts. Many of them are beyond our imagination. In our Wan Chai ghost tours, you will know more about the rituals the Chinese perform to feed, pacify, entertain or even bribe ghosts. You can also taste the food that ghosts eat too.

 

What Do Ghosts Eat? Wan Chai Ghosts and Food Tour

Tour Name What Do Ghosts Eat? Wan Chai Ghosts & Food Tour
Date/Time Monday & Friday / 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Location Wan Chai
Meeting Point Three Pacific Place, 1 Queen’s Rd East, Wan Chai
Duration Approx. 3 hours
Fee HKD 420 (adult) / HKD 250 (child aged 6-12) [All food tastings included]
Language English
Registration Book Now at http://walkin.hk/tours/ghost-myths/!