I had an appointment at noon in Langham Place before my afternoon shift work. It was still a summer day like any other, with half blue sky and half white clouds in addition to the unbearable heat. Two hours later I walked out the mall, there was a “typhoon 3″ warning sign by the window. As I look behind the sign, the city has changed.
The clouds had gone into an unfamiliar dark grey. Trees were raging in the air. While the Mong Kok goers were still out and about, the pace has slowed down and became less dense. I proceeded to work as usual, because my job ignores regulations that disallow people to go to work during extreme weather (with compensations, of course). It was until I reached the airport that it began to rain, then stopped, then became even more weird when I settled in the office.
A thick fog, or rather a piece of low-flying cloud, emerged from the west and began covering the buildings on the other side of the sea our office faces. It was difficult not to draw reference from Silent Hill or various horror classics. Colleagues who sat near the windows have expressed that they could feel them shaking ever so lightly. As night fell and it was only our shift team left in the office, the winds began to rage.
There were many adjectives to describe the noises that happened after night – bellowing, snoring, shrieking, threatening to shatter the glasses, howling – and probably didn’t stop there. The dynamics of those winds were surprisingly wide. It was also later at 10pm that Hong Kong Observatory announced Typhoon 8 warning – the work waiver that my line of work ignores and means nothing to us. Well, means nothing to us going to work or not, but it means a lot to our safety during transport between work and home.
The next shift team did their best to arrive at 11:30pm. My team hurdled together to catch a taxi, which fees can be claimed by the company during extreme weather. As we walked outside the building, various sights beheld before us, such as dancing street lamps, collapsed plants, shower of rain that was akin to broken water pipe from the sky, long taxi queue and an outrageous taxi fee, which drivers took advantage of to compensate their effort in bad weather.
I got home safely in a dress, which I had tugged in with my hand during the journey outdoor. Even after I shut my home door behind me, winds continued to shriek through the corridor outside my apartment, like many unrest spirits of Hong Kong desperate for their vengeance and justice…