To Ping Lam

Hong Kong was exactly what this Expat Princess needed to rejuvenate herself for 2008. I was, and I do not exaggerate, headed for a breakdown which could only have led to my staying in bed for a month, visiting a shrink and begging for meds, or getting on another airplane, this time headed for the US . So, I am happy to report, that Hong Kong is a more than satisfactory quick fix about which there is much to write.

I had forgotten, until our arrival there, that, being a former British concession, all the cars were driving on the wrong side of the road. Yes, wrong. We have a neighbor who lived in Hong Kong for several years. Towards the end of the assignment, he was riding in the shot gun passenger seat of a taxi on his way to work when he was hit head-on by a double decker bus (they have those British inventions too) and nearly died. He spent about 5 months in various hospitals. Neither driver was injured. As a former personal injury insurance adjuster, I could never understand this scenario until I too sat up front with the taxi driver when it suddenly became very clear.

Which brings me to To Ping Lam*, the driver who drove us to Stanley Market. Subconsciously, I must have memorized the taxi drivers’ faces and names, perhaps in an effort to see if I had ridden with the ill-fated taxi driver during our visit. Most drivers were not chatty as their English is spotty at best**. Lam was no exception. So, imagine my surprise when later in the week we entered a taxi in a different part of town, and there was To Ping Lam! He did not remember us. I was a little spooked, I admit. I mean, what are the odds of having the same taxi driver in a city of 16 million? Later I conferred with my neighbor who confirmed that Lam was not the driver who nearly killed her husband.

So, what can you, dear reader, glean from today’s post? First, wear a seat belt, especially in Hong Kong . Seat belts save lives and Bobo the taxi driver is still employed. Second, if you are whacked by a negligent taxi driver, tort laws apply. You might have to fly to Hong Kong to pursue your lawsuit but it might just be worth it. Thirdly, some coincidences are just coincidences.

Enough of the anecdotes for today. There’s more to come.

*real name

** N. B.:carry a map of HK with you at all times if you ever visit

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “To Ping Lam

  1. klab

    So glad to hear you are rejuvenated. Dying to hear more about this trip — what made it so fantastic? And have you had a change of heart about the blog?

    I was watching a Sex In The City re-run last night. The one where she goes to Aiden’s country house & hates it. The final scene shows her dolled up & hailing a cab. The taxi and the city are like her comfort food. They feed her soul. Was there enough familiar about Hong Kong that your soul was fed?

  2. expat princess

    Klab: More to come! At least for awhile. Although I am really a country mouse, First World surroundings did feed my soul. Hustle and bustle minus the shoving, no bicycles, and no public hawking up of lungs and spitting. Plus, it is that whole mountain/sea combo that gets me. B-yoo-tea-ful!

  3. gamamãe

    I imagne no bala perdida concern either?? Know what you mean by first world surroundings. Took the sis in law and family to Rio for revellion. I remembered there is a big difference in look and feel between a cidade do interior like Campinas and a world class destination like Rio. Is this similar to Shanghai and Hong Kong??By the way, I took the gringaiada to buy new calcinhas( my 14 year old neice chose red for passion!), but forgot to pack mine for the trip!! I hope this isn´t a forshadowing of the year ahead.

  4. expat princess

    Gamarama,
    I heard from my neighbor that there were 7 gun shot wounds (one for each wave?) de bala perdida in Rio at New Year’s. Sou uma caipira, com certeza! Re: the panties – no foreshadowing! 2008 will be great!

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