These pictures, taken by Sammy Wan and posted by Real Hong Kong News on Facebook, show a group of construction workers building a bamboo ‘matrix’ at Admiralty, replacing the iron barricades that the police had cleared earlier this morning (Monday 13 October 2014).
Hong Kong has long been known as a forest of cement buildings (石屎森林) and bamboo scaffolding is such a common sight in the city that residents no longer pay much attention to it. For example, when I was living in Sheung Wan some years ago, there was bamboo scaffolding just outside of my window for months.
What hit home in these pictures was the sight of these bamboo sticks in repose, a position that is not meant to be—they are meant to be erected—and how the battle for democracy has forced us to be creative and resilient, to the extent of changing the nature of things.
Do not forget, streets are for people to walk on, upright, and instead, so many of the brave democracy fighters have shared horizontal time on the streets, sleeping overnight.
Whatever it takes. Whatever it needs.
Tammy Ho Lai-Ming is Assistant Professor at the Department of English Language and Literature. She is the administrator of Agora. [Click here to read all entries by or about Tammy.]