Hato claims the neighbourhood tree

My Typhoon Hato war-story from yesterday involved a fearless early-morning struggle against driving wind along streets ankle-deep in torrents of water. The 200-yard trip to the local Circle K yielded sufficient emergency liquid supplies to enable me to spend the rest of the day safely indoors monitoring the mayhem. The most impressive moment was around mid-day, when the whole sky suddenly turned bright, as if someone had switched a strip light on somewhere up in the clouds. Presumably, the eye of the storm (to the south-west) had lined up with the sun.

The storm surge coincided with high tide – resulting in some serious seafront flooding in Lei Yu Mun, Heng Fa Chuen, Tai O and other parts of Hong Kong. Sudden drops in pressure also suck air out of buildings. This creates eerie swooshing sounds in apartments in non-airtight structures, but pops whole windows out of sealed towers like the Hang Seng Bank HQ.

(Pix and videos here, here and here.)

Unlike Hong Kong, Macau actually suffered death and serious breakdown, with people missing and power and water supplies cut off. Geography probably had a part to play, but we can’t rule out divine vengeance, especially seeing how casinos and tawdry hotels were badly hit.

Despite having a mountain to one side, and being surrounded by high-rises, my own area experienced some havoc. The neighbourhood tree was uprooted and thrust onto the lane below the steps…

Police swiftly taped off the disaster zone. Both two-footed and four-footed residents are in shock this morning, finding the usual route to the Mid-Levels Escalator cut off.

I should know what the magnificent specimen was (a banyan?), or what has happened to all the birds that lived in it. The preservationists will also be mourning the damage to the old wall – which is probably the city’s only remaining example of late Tudor brickwork, or something.


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6 Responses to Hato claims the neighbourhood tree

  1. Chinese Netizen says:

    Thank Gawd you’re unscathed!

    And now back to your regularly scheduled programming…

  2. A pseudo-typhoon always keeps the population under control.

    An exercise in governments giving orders and citizens dutifully obeying.

    Be honest.There is not even the slightest chance that you would see it that way.

    Hemlock. Born In Captivity.

  3. Probably says:

    Yet more trees falling all over HK because our dumb-assed rulers only believe in capital projects not revenue (like employing staff to maintain trees and gardens). Arguments about capital projects revolve around keeping construction workers employed but these are mainly contracted SE Asian labourers with dubious legitimate legitimate credentials (hence the opportunity for exploitation).
    It is now the time to pressure the HK government to actually care for it’s own city through maintenance of public facilities and give regular employment to local people to do so. Or are the government supporters just interested in awarding huge contracts to large companies that will give them a big payoff in retirement?

  4. Joe Blow says:

    I felt sorry for that beautiful, old banyan tree that was uprooted in Nathan Road. We all know that tree: we have walked passed it, driven passed it in a taxi or a car or bus a thousand times. At any moment of our life, in Hong Kong, it was there. Just let your memory linger a bit. And now that it is gone, it has taken a little bit of us as well.

  5. Red Dragon says:


    Hemmers may have been born in captivity (whatever that may mean), but he has the wit to return to the wild.

    You, on the other hand, were born a cunt. And from that there is no escape.

  6. Tiu Fu Fong says:

    @Hemlock – any reason why the third highest ranking organic keywords for biglychee.com are “hsbc card overseas activation” (https://www.semrush.com/info/biglychee.com?db=us)?

    Are you scraping our data?

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