Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Hong Kong Tang

My views of Hong Kong have been completely changed by this trip.

I had always had a mild dislike for Hong Kong.  For me it had always been a city that was just missing something, almost like it was a machine without a soul.

It didn't help that didn't like the atmosphere of Hong Kong.  It was filled with a constant need for spending for no real purpose.  The lifestyle seemed to involve nothing more than moving from restaurant to bar to restaurant to bar.  The entire purpose of existence in Hong Kong has always been geared towards a never ending cycile of spending that has amazed me.  This was not the type of life that I wanted to be drawn into.  This was Mammon's city.

I was very surprised when I was taken to a Buddhist park near Diamond Hill.
I had been spending some quality time with my parents and my father had been invited to lunch by some of his pharmaceutical industry peers.  My mother and I are never ones to pass up a free meal at the best of times, so we happily invited ourselves to join him.

The location of the lunch was completely unexpected.  The local Buddhist community had come into possession of a large piece of land and had developed it into a traditional Tang dynasty style park.  They could have sold it or turned it into more apartments, but unstead they made something that was truly for the common good of the community.
It was beautiful.
This was an enormous park that was large enough that it sheltered everyone from the noise and intensity of the outside world.
Walking through the park, I wasn't sure where we were going for lunch.  All I could see was the immaculately maintained gardens, some pagodas and a large waterfall.  I didn't see anything that looked like it could provide me with lunch.

We kept walking towards the waterfall and it became clear to me that it was actually the waterfall that was our destination.

Behind its cascade of water was the restaurant.
Inside we were fed with a lunch of vegetarian Buddhist dishes.

The food was clean and simple, with none of the adulteration or additives so common in Hong Kong.

This had been a very surprising trip to Hong Kong.

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