I spent a fair amount of time working on preparing my taxes today. Pity us poor Americans for suffering through what has to be the most laborious tax code on earth. After that (I’m still not done with my taxes after 4 hours) I went shopping for paint supplies in Shau Kei Wan this afternoon. If all goes well, I’ll be working on a mural painting in the next month or so. Wish me luck with the proposal. And if you have a source for exterior paint in HK, let me know.
After a day of chores I finally had a moment to draw before daylight faded. I chose to sit at the tram turnaround in Shau Kei Wan and draw the red minibus terminus. Red minibuses are a world unto themselves. They are the only public transport in Hong Kong that is self owned or operated. They also don’t follow a schedule or strict route. Instead, the move along when they are full so the driver makes the most money. They also will drop you off wherever you ask as long as it is not too far out of the way from the final destination. What this means to the passengers is that the bus won’t move until all the seats are taken. If someone calls for a stop and gets off, the bus is likely to stay at that stop until another passenger comes along. It also means you better be able to speak Cantonese so that 1: you understand if another passenger asks for the bus to deviate off the regular route and 2: you can ask the driver to stop where you need to be. The other fun thing about these buses is that the price of the ride fluctuates depending on what day it is, what time of day it is, and whether or not you look like you know what you are doing. Because of excessive speed all red minibuses have a large digital speedometer hanging behind the driver for passengers to see. If the bus goes faster than 80km per hour (max speed in HK is 70km) an alarm goes off in the bus. So rider beware, but don’t let it scare you from trying out this very fast bus system. 😉
P.S. The green minibuses are regulated, hold a schedule and set fare. Don’t confuse the red and green buses.