My wife, my ten-year-old son and I were at Admiralty on the afternoon of 2nd October.
These were scenes at Admiralty: all photographs here were taken by my son.
Supplies station near Admiralty MTR Station.
A phone recharging corner.
The overall sense was that the students were resting in the day.
The atmosphere was of love and peace. There were many people walking up and down the streets.
There were families with young kids, and tourists were snapping selfies.
It really felt like a tourist attraction. Yes, we’re reminded by the banner above that it’s not a party.
There were refreshments for protesters and passers-by alike.
I think there’s a dual character to the protest.
It’s more family and tourist-friendly in the day, while at night, things get relatively more serious.
There were students distributing yellow ribbons.
The streets at that time were not densely packed at all. I had the feeling that most of the protesters had gone home to rest so as to return later.
Passers-by were encouraged to leave behind messages.
This is a protest you could bring your kids to. It has really been a family-friendly protest, in the day at least.
But the umbrellas were reminders, of course, of how things could turn ugly very quickly.
The protest so far has the moral high ground because it’s about love and peace.
The protesters are unbelievably civil and polite.
The challenge, I think, is to keep on being civil.
For the protest to fail, the governments of Hong Kong and China have to do precisely nothing.
I am genuinely afraid that frustrations would build among protesters, that there might be internal divisions, that a tiny bit of friction between the police and the protesters might lead to violence.
It’s a wonderful dream to have – but what happens if the dream doesn’t become reality?
My worry is that my students might become bitter and disenchanted.
In which case, my practical advice would be: hold on to the dream but work with the system, become part of the system, climb whatever corporate/social/political ladders there are in front of you and change the system from within. You’ll then have the Hong Kong you deserve.
The dream of an entire generation of university students is a powerful dream that will never dissipate, no matter what.
You are the future of Hong Kong, no matter what.
Of course, I’m being somewhat pessimistic, and these are early days.
This has been a thoughtful protest – even the trash was being sorted out for recycling.
The thoughtfulness that went into creating this ashtray would be the thoughtfulness that would change Hong Kong.
These are signs of love and peace.
Police presence was token at best in the day.
There’s a police recruitment poster at the sidewalk – I was amazed it wasn’t defaced in any way.
There were speakers’ corners set up at various places.
Anyone, regardless of whether they were for or against the movement, got to speak for 2-3 minutes should they wish to do so. There was a man who talked about how he argued bitterly with his wife as they were on different sides of the fence with regards to the movement.
This group was reading aloud a prayer for Hong Kong.
My thoughts and prayers are with you, good people of Hong Kong.
I pray for love, peace and wisdom.
7 thoughts on “Love and Peace at Admiralty”
Whoa, this whole segment was really informative and insightful. This isn’t what the news in Australia is showing us. It’s showing us only the darker side of the protest, at nighttime when the police and protesters are clashing together. So I’m glad to have you show me what the truth really is! Thanks 🙂
Changing the system from within may sound practical but I am afraid that in reality, once you’re inside, it will change you… you will become a part of it in earnest without even realizing it… and if you don’t, you will just be spewed out…
I may be wrong, of course…
That’s also very true… in the end, we get the society we deserve. Sigh.
Yep!… Sigh too…
“changing the system from within”… THAT I’m really pessimistic about. because I just can’t be convinced that one won’t be enslaved and devoured by it before you can even say anything, let alone ‘change’. . .
anyway, thank you for coming. I’m glad you came in a peaceful time, not the Admiralty choking in tear gas and pepper spray. to be honest, the world in front of me has changed irrevocably when the first tear gas canister flew over our heads. and it’s not of bitter resentment, but more of the restraint and resilience for the cause. and indeed, I remember that night reading a snipplet of your message from Asian CHA and was literally moved to tears–yes, Oct 2 night, sitting on the streets of Admiralty, reading your message with very limited network (and even now, this single line “you are the future of Hong Kong, no matter what” makes me go awww…) thank you for sending support and strength, esp. to some of us on the frontlines.
Yes, I got to see the peaceful side of the protest – stay strong, stay hopeful!