October 1st, 2010
Time: 6:21 p.m.
Location: Steps outside Rent-a-Room Hostel, Tak-Hing Rd (7/8), Hong Kong
Never in my life have I seriously considered falling asleep on a public street until this moment. I feel like I’m being lulled into a dream world where nothing is sharp enough to be entirely real. Dusk is settling in, darkness is creeping into the corners and alleys of the various byways and sideways of Hong Kong’s bustling avenues, but the warm glow of city lamps and the last rays of the falling sun are pushing past night’s encroaching grasp.
It is the very best time of day: this blur between what’s true and what’s seen - a softening of the harsh edges of reality – where the paint-peeled wall becomes a thing of beauty and every moment would make an interesting photograph.
The air is just heavy enough that it seems to be wrapping me in a warm, comfortable embrace. I want to lean into the sensation and let it ease my tired body.
I am receiving everything in pieces. I do not hear whole sounds – the occasional click of a heel on the brick, snatches of a passing conversation, the smooth rumble of a moving vehicle. They dart into my alley and just as quickly leave, gone before I see the object attached to the sound. The steady drone of an air conditioner is my only constant companion – its hum the melody playing in the background.
I haven’t had the easiest of days. A good stair nap might be just what I need.
Hong Kong seems to agree.