Đi sâu vào cuộc sống bí mật của tòa nhà cổ ở Hồng Kông

bất chấp tòa nhà chọc trời sáng bóng và cửa hàng thời thượng, các nhà thám hiểm đô thị đang mạo hiểm đến nơi đổ nát để tìm kiếm linh hồn của thành phố

Sacha Yasumoto likes to serve dinner with a side of danger.

Her guests are blindfolded (bị bịt mắt) and driven to a mystery location (địa điểm bí ẩn) in the middle of nowhere Hong Kong. Depending on the night in question, they might have to trek into (đi vào) the jungle (rừng rậm) to reach their final destination (điểm đến cuối cùng).

Here, in the decaying (thối rữa) ruins of a mansion (biệt thự) or temple (ngôi đền) or other abandoned site, the guests might be served a menu of kabocha potage, gin jake (salmon), slow-cooked Wagyu beef and chocolate cake, while at any moment, a bat, gecko or wild monkey could make an appearance.

In that sense, she — and the diners — are part of a broader community of explorers (cộng đồng nhà thám hiểm), history buffs and nostalgia seekers peering into a bygone era (thời đại đã qua). They have been sharing the snippets of history they have uncovered on local Facebook groups, Instagram and YouTube.

It’s a community that has expanded as the city struggles with tectonic political and cultural shifts, in particular Beijing’s growing influence (ảnh hưởng ngày càng tăng) in the once highly independent territory (lãnh thổ). Now, there’s more interest in seeing these places, before politics or development erase what people see as the city’s unique identity at the crossroads of, as cliché as it now sounds, East and West.

Even the government, which has at times been deaf to calls for preservation (bảo tồn), is starting to listen to public sentiment, choosing to preserve heritage (bảo tồn di sản) sites like the rediscovered Ex-Sham Shui Po Service Reservoir, a cavernous chamber with soaring Romanesque brick arches built in 1904 — where planned demolitions (phá hủy theo kế hoạch) were stopped during the pandemic.

Pictures of the site taken by urban explorers had made it onto social media, and the public put pressure on officials to protect the rare site. It’s now open to the public with a number of guided tours offered by the Water Supplies Department.

source: nytimes,

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