one night, one story

September 5, 2012 | Hong KongLife Lately

1. duck heads. 2. a crossing in mong kong. 3. fish market. 4. lynchee ice cream.

location: hong kong.

8:42 pm. I walked over from yau ma tei to tai kok tsui; the borderless neighborhood between mong kok and prince edward. I like the streets there. ash, oak, pine, beech, elm street. it rained at three blocks only; I stopped for a cigarette, waiting for the clouds to move further up north. the sound of roaring buses and people’s chatter drowned in my headphones and raindrops on the metal rooftops. I kept still; focusing on nothing in particular. people walked past me. I played the same song on repeat and carefully avoided shallow pools of water on the sidewalk. there’s no doorbell at number twenty nine, so I knew somebody would be waiting downstairs.

10:45 pm. we talked through the whole evening. I barely checked the clock but I felt the time passing me by. I learnt a long time ago that his soon means much later and wasn’t bothered by it. bottled mixed drinks were headache inducing but I didn’t care. layers of stories I’d never heard of before were coming up on the surface and I couldn’t stop thinking about what they would look like a piece of paper or a film screen. the human condition and its stories is the only reason why I keep coming back. last night was the perfect time to realize that. somehow, it made sense. at midnight we descended back on the street for a bowl of lychee ice cream with pink chocolate shavings. under the sound of rain drops. she poured her sad soul out and I felt sorry for her. it is going to take a bit more time for me to admit that we are actually the same.

1:35 am. I turned my phone off out of disappointment. his message came at 1:36 am. I will never understand the connection between the two of us but it is there. it has been there since day one.

5:45 am. soft stillness. I fought the urge to fall back asleep and sat up on the bed. some of the wooden parts are beginning to break apart and the bed creaks loudly with every movement. I stumbled in the hallway; my legs find the way to the kitchen automatically. it was still dark and the only source of light were the orange street lamps. dusk till dawn. the busy fruit market below us slowly faded into silence. new day; the same monotony. but I look for the signs, for the details. something that will tell me it’s time. three spoons of coffee, half a spoon of sugar, milk. I walk to work each morning, picking up the remains of the night before, recognizing the imprints on the ground as if there were my own. some time ago, they used to be mine. I am not sure whether I long to return to it.