HOW DING DING CAME TO BE!
A few months ago, I visited the workshop of Master Hui Ka-hung whose family business boasts the last few artisans who make lion and dragon dance costumes by hand from scratch. Did you visit Victoria Park this year at Mid Autumn? If so, you must have admired the full-size carousel which he and his family made! Over a year of painstaking work - sadly now consigned to landfill as it's too expensive to store and "nobody wants it". Horrified by this information, I learnt about the traditional techniques and was able to handle and admire the magnificent work. Inspired by what I saw, and determined to shine a light on their skill and dedication, The Lion Rock Press have created a Hong Kong Tram to honour them which is trundling around the city!
The meeting of two Hong Kong family businesses felt like a fitting way to celebrate the creativity of Hong Kong people. For 30 years, Master Hui Ka-hung has devoted himself to the zhizha (paper craft) industry. Despite the decline of Lion Head making in Hong Kong, he still insists on protecting the craftsmanship of zizha and hopes to inspire others to carry it on to the next generation.
From a personal point of view, I have loved travelling on the Hong Kong trams ever since I was a toddler, when I would sit on my mother’s knee and look out of the window at the bustling city flying by. The sensation of the movement underneath me, the feel of the smooth polished wooden seats, the sound of the tram travelling along the track and the iconic “ding” still moves me today and I feel so connected to the heritage of this charismatic transport. I’m overcome to have my own tram to celebrate my birthday this week, and to remember being that little girl staring out of the window in awe - it’s very emotional for me.
So, The Lion Rock Press is asking Hong Kongers to keep their eyes peeled for a very special passenger on one of the city’s ‘Ding Ding’ trams! For four weeks (from November 24th), join in the search party to find Ding Ding the Dragon. He will be hard to miss - his vivid head will envelope the driver-festooned in traditional chinese accessories and the hand-illustrated colourful scales will curve along the sides. Hong Kong certainly won’t have seen a tram like it before! This highly instagrammable dragon will have people reaching for their phone for a Ding Ding the Dragon selfie!
If you spot him, I'd love for you to take a photograph, follow us, share him on social media and tag @thelionrockpress and hashtag #whereisDingDing
as he travels along his route (PLUS you will be in with a chance to win HK$1000 showroom credit!).
Good luck, and I can’t wait for people to start spotting Ding Ding the Dragon and sharing their pictures!