It’s now the season of tropical typhoons but with a long weekend coming up, the city’s first taste of storm signal number 8 could have arrived at a better time.
Don’t be surprised that Hong Kong people would love a rendezvous with very strong winds. Not a fresh gale, which only warrants intermediate warnings, but stronger gusts of wind that fits a specific category and automatically puts the city at a standstill. Classes are suspended, office work and stock market take a break and people pause from the hectic daily routine.
But there’s no break time on a long weekend highlighted by the city’s handover anniversary. Even before Friday, outbound passengers have started to flock to Hong Kong airport to beat the crowd, and spend longer holiday time while teasing everyone with gorgeous vacation photos posted on Facebook.
Long weekends are spent catching up on lost sleep, hanging out with friends, or in this case, staying awake to watch football games or tennis matches from the other side of the globe. While there are still lots of things that can be done even during foul weather, such weather disturbance presents rather unpleasant distraction to many people. People flying overnight may experience air turbulence. Overnight camping or beach parties may have to be called off. And perhaps government organizers are feeling a bit nervous as to how the weather will affect planned activities for the 15th anniversary of British handover of Hong Kong to China.
If there’s consolation to a typhoon visit, it’s that it wipes out the dirty air that lingered in the city and it keeps more cars in the garage, effectively reducing emissions.
Typhoons remind me of some unforgettable moments in the past and bonding moments with flatmates in the past (movie marathon, scrabble sessions and watching the Wimbledon finals rooting for Goran Ivanisevic and Justine Henin).
For those who are unaware or unsure of what to do during storm signal number 8, this guide may be helpful. If we can only tell Doksuri and siblings to pay us a visit in the middle of the week.