Hong Kong Cemetery

It was a 'slow news day' in Hong Kong, so I decided to pay Hong Kong Cemetery a visit.

I've gone past it many times, either going to or coming from the south side of Hong Kong island, as it is by the entrance of the Aberdeen tunnel in Happy Valley. The cemetery, with all it's decaying white marble statues of angels and overgrown banyan trees, has always exerted a fascination over me, in much the way the Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris still does. Some parts of the cemetery are definitley a bit like Angkor Wat meets Père Lachaise.

The Cemetery is divided up along ethnic and sectarian lines. I visited the St Michael Catholic Cemetery and the Muslim Cemetery.

The lady in the office was struggling to read the swirly English handwriting in the dog-eared 1944 death register, so that she could transcribe it into Chinese, then type it into the computer, presumably to put the whole lot online. I helped her to decipher the word 'Giovanni' for her. I was surprised, given the Hurculean-sized job that she had been given, that she spoke no English at all.

The Muslim Cemetery around the corner was fascinating. Many people don't realise that Hong Kong has quite a sizable Muslim community, due to it's colonial past.

But I saw no snakes.

All images and text © Alex Hofford / Image Solutions Ltd. 2011 | Web design in Hong Kong by Ugli © 2011