去或留的歌 The songs of leaving or staying
（My Little Airport的《你叫我幫你譯一首德國歌詞》）
These two songs strike a chord with a lot of Hong Kongers, capturing the paradoxical feeling of wanting and not wanting to leave.
I hope the wind and the rain
Would take me far away to my dreamland
My hometown doesn’t answer my prayer
But why eventually
When I’ve passed through the bay to a faraway land
Yet all I want is to go back home again
Wanting and not wanting to stay –
I hope the wind and the rain will carry me back somewhere in my hometown
Foreign places could not help me shed my weariness
But why eventually
Just after returning home, even before I take off my shoes
I want to leave my hometown again
(“You asked me to translate a German song for you” by My Little Airport)
“Really don’t want to lose the hot soymilk, hot buns, or that CD shop in the neighbourhood
You take your shirt and I take my guitar
But something cannot be taken away
Sweet dreams, distant from our bed, are total fabrications
Become a new migrant, cut off from your first half of life
And continue your life in a new home country”.
Endy Chow’s soft and thin voice in “Not returning home anymore in this life” utters a hysteric cry of the struggles of migrants.
However, some people don’t even have a choice.
Someone was arrested on the plane before it took off. Someone went far off to somewhere for building international connections. All they tried was distancing from the jail, but not approaching any home.
從新安縣說起 Once upon a time there was Sun On Province
When this land was called Sun On Province / San On Province, the Qing dynasty emperor issued the edict of Great Evaucation. In order to isolate Zheng Cheng Gong and other anti-Qing power along the coast, the emperor forced everyone living in the coastal area to move 50 li inland (one li is approximately 500 meters). Otherwise they would face a death sentence. Residents embarked on the journey in much haste and could not return home for years. Leaving their farmland meant the total loss of livelihood. Some men chose to sell their wives and children, while some who stuck to rites chose to commit suicide together with their spouse. Think of how devastated the land became when there was no one to tend to. The edict brought heavy casualties for the whole region.
In the 1960s-1970s, countless people fled to Hong Kong as refugees before the Touch Base Policy expired. Some people walked. Some swam for the long distance. Some were so starved they ate whatever, like rats and cotton. Some climbed the 20 feet of barbed wire. Risking whatever, just for leaving their precarious homeland. How hard it is to put a figure on the number of deaths on the road, in the ocean.
“bắt đầu từ nay” – a lot of Hong Kongers joked about this interesting pronounciation of Vietnamese. That was indeed a recurring public announcement that drew many Vietnamese into despair, saying that a new screening policy was implemented. Vietnamese people who entered Hong Kong due to economic reason would be considered as illegal immigrants facing jail and deportation. In 30-year time, Hong Kong has accommodated over 200,000 Vietnamese temporarily.
(More stories about Vietnamese refugees in Hong Kong: https://zolimacitymag.com/fighting-until-end-hong-kong-vietnamese-refugees/)
這一刻 AT THIS MOMENT
Those were the days when there were still refugee camps in Hong Kong. Now, there are still a lot of people coming to Hong Kong from different parts of the world to escape war and persecution, etc. They wanted to seek asylum here but fell into the gaps of policies. Over the years, they could not attain the qualification of refugee, could not return to their homeland, could not work, and could not see their future. Some people even are facing indefinite period of detention at the Castle Peak Bay Immigration Centre, receiving degrading treatment worse than prison. Dated to 28th July 2020, it had been a month since over 15 people started a hunger strike. THEY ARE STILL ON HUNGER STRIKE. Similar actions had been initiated for at least 6 times since 2000, yet attracted not much concern from the public. EVEN NOW.
PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION HERE: https://forms.gle/gVzAeDzRUVoekRfp8
Facebook page: CIC detainees’ concern group
Some people who finally settled down here ended up with a lifelong separation from family. Just because they gave birth to their child at the other border in mainland China. Father Franco Mella and many other people have been fighting for the right of abode and family reunion for many. They pointed out that the figure of “influx of 1.67 million people” was a big lie, while the number of incoming children would be just around 170,000. Over the 21 years of the campaign, many parents’ hair has turned white, but their children were still far away. The documentary “Exodus of nowhere. Episode 1: the water is wide” depicts how tragic and unjust this incident is.
How many stories of wandering, rootlessness and diaspora are spelled out in this floating city?
If you are now wandering, may God’s mercy be with you. If you still have choice, how would you treasure what you have, to share with the sojourners, wanderers and the persecuted?