Flowers, rats and more Sai Wan memories 滿姐的故事

Flowers, rats and more Sai Wan memories 滿姐的故事

Sai Wan Stories; memories of HK’s oldest public housing estate
In Kennedy Town you find Hong Kong oldest surviving public estate. 640 units in five blocks built in a rocky hill side, Sai Wan Estate is a living memory of the city’s first big housing crisis. Thousands of people moved here ‘temporarily’ in 1958 fleeing war and unrest, but many never left. Sai Wan Estate is a micro-cosmos of post-war Hong Kong, a place of survivors where the community spirit thrives. We met with some long-time residents. We learned about their hopes, dreams and memories.  Hear their stories, learn what they love.

西環邨
這個故事是《西灣邨故事系列》的一部分,故事由明愛莫張瑞勤社區中心及iDiscover撰寫,並曾在區內餐廳Little Creatures展覽。希望這個系列可以讓更多新街坊了解昔日的生活點滴,發現西環的美好。

Carol choir and pastors would come from the church to pray and sing and afterwards they’d eat: sweet soups, congee, noodles, cakes and sometimes red bean sweet soup.

 

「唱完歌,咪出去出面食嘢囉,兩張枱,廿幾人嚟,我搬我啲枱出去,買啲西餅呀、煲啲粥呀,煮啲甜粥呀、炒麵炒粉呀,拎出去開心到呢…」

 

Smell of rats

“Rats”, that’s the first thing that comes to mind when Moon Yeh’s recalls the early days of Sai Wan Estate. The memories still bring a frown to her face. “In the 60s, we had to clean the floors and wash the beds very often, because it was filthy, there were so many rats. When I first moved here, I was so scared of them. We always had the doors open so they’d just sneak in from the corridors or through the pipes. The arcade was a real rathole. It was dirty, not a great place to live. The floor was bare concrete, we invested in tiles and wallpaper, but because we live on the lower floors it was always damp and they didn’t last. But what can you say? The rent was only $99, they increased it slowly to the current rate of $1,400. You can’t even rent a storeroom for $1,400 now!”

老鼠的氣味

滿姐記憶中,西環邨不是一直也是這樣的舒適怡人,想著仍對從前的衛生環境猶有餘悸,「60年代時,大家要一起大掃除,要洗床板,洗太平地,因為那時真的好污糟,有好多老鼠呀!初初搬到這蜓時,嚇死我,老鼠跳來跳去,床下底有老鼠,於是搬哂啲嘢出去,哇!嚇死我啦!而家先乾淨返哂!以前蟑螂呀,咩都有!好恐怖!啲細路仔好驚呀,企哂喺梳化度,大叫『有老鼠呀!』又要揾老鼠夾夾呀!以前呢度真係好污糟!」

「那時候打開門,老鼠靜悄悄走入來,以前騎樓未有防火板,老鼠可以蜎窿蜎罅到入嚟,後尾整左防火板,先蜎唔到入嚟;好污穢呀以前,唔係真係好好住,依度裝修咗幾次喇,又揾人舖磚。以前無裝修,係石屎地,我地都揾人鏟過油,又舖牆紙,整咗好多野,起初舖牆紙又唔得,又潮濕,咁過兩年又拆哂,唯有油過啲灰水,一潮濕呀,地下濕哂,樓上就好啲,我哋近地下,潮濕好勁,廁所啲瓷磚浸水呀。但住喺度,唔要求咁多啦,初初嚟就交$99,一路加,加到宜家大約$1400。現在千零蚊租個廁所都唔夠啦!」不過現在,滿眼看去,現在的這個家十分素淨雅緻,滿姐把這裡打理得一絲不苟。小茶具、家庭照,一個家,由開始到苦心經營,一點點的愛心令家一點點溫暖起來。

 

Making flowers

Today Moon Jeh’s home is cosy, flowers and portraits neatly arrangement on a cabinet with a loving attention to detail.  “The kids run around, but I seldom go to my neighbour’s flat, I don’t want to make things dirty. They like mah-jong games, but I don’t play. I usually get some fabric or leather to work on. I used to make plastic flowers, a dozen of them earned 30 cents. There was a shop where you’d collect materials and bring back, dropped off the flowers when ready. They used a stamp card to record your earnings. My kids were good, they helped making the flowers. 30 cents would buy a full meal for the whole family. Beef was 20 cents, add a few cents for sprouts and if we were lucky a sunny side egg on top!”

班駁日常

滿姐溫柔地說,「依度呀個個打開門,隔離鄰舍一齊食飯,細路呀走過嚟食,就係走來走去囉,大家一齊玩吓,我就好少入人地間屋,驚整污糟人哋地下。」「以前有咩事都會互相照應,果時有咩事呀個個都出黎睇吓嘢。」

我們問她平日是否很多左鄰右里在西環邨四周活動呢?滿姐說:「係呀,鍾意打麻雀咪打麻雀囉,不過我唔打麻雀的;我通常攞啲布料返嚟穿下,到隔離鄰舍攞武師果啲皮嚟車。攞膠花穿吓,一打3毫子,佢係一間鋪頭,我落去攞,有張卡仔蓋印,每做一次就蓋一次。」

「我啲仔女好乖架,你又穿我又穿,好多嘢穿,一打先3毫子,果時3毫子買餐餸啦,2毫子可以買牛肉,斗零芽菜仔就可以炒牛肉,一人一隻雞蛋打落去,荷包蛋啦,佢地咪撈嚟食,一隻碗一隻匙羹,三隻嘢(三位孩子)喺到好開心架,嗰時環境唔同依家,我呢好少去人地屋企食飯,係拎啲野食俾人,你拎俾我,我拎俾你。」

 

Christmas celebrations

Every Christmas the Liu’s would set up two tables near South Terrace for a Christmas celebration. They had to apply in advance. Carol choir and pastors would come from the church to pray and sing and afterwards they’d eat: sweet soups, congee, noodles, cakes and sometimes red bean sweet soup. “All the neighbours were invited, sometimes we’d have more than 20 people. There are two grannies who live on the upper levels, they also believe in God, they’d come and help with the preparations and even all my non-Christian neighbours would come, sing and share our food. We’d sing carols until late at night”.

聖誕節

「喺聖誕節會喺外面(南苑台靠山邊的空地)擺兩圍,嗰時出面無嗰張棋枱,通架嘛,我廿四號晚就在寫字樓(現屋邨辦事處)申請,我係信主架,我要報佳音,我有好多詩歌班、牧師呀來我屋企,牧師帶人來祈禱,詩班入我屋企唱歌,唱完歌,咪出去出面食嘢囉,兩張枱,廿幾人嚟,我搬我啲枱出去,買啲西餅呀、煲啲粥呀,煮啲甜粥呀、炒麵炒粉呀,拎出去開心到呢……十幾年前了,嗰時鬼咁開心,真係好開心,因為成班嚟唱聖詩,唱完出去出面玩呀、食呀,一陣間又炒米炒河粉呀,又糖水,我又煲啲紅豆沙呀。」

「我去報佳音呢,啲教友由聯邦樓傳過嚟,最後話要去廖太(滿姐)嗰度,因為嗰度有得玩,有空地,人哋一層樓邊有出面俾你玩,邊有咁熱鬧。樓上有兩個阿婆信主,佢地都嚟幫我手,隔離屋唔係信主,但佢地出嚟望下,蛋糕會攞俾佢地, 報佳音會好夜,去到十一點十二點,但佢地玩到一點鐘先走。好開心。」

這裡是鳥語花香,家的氣味。

These stories were curated by Caritas Mok Cheung Sui Kun Community Centre and iDiscover, and exhibited at Little Creatures, a restaurant in the neighbourhood.

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