Mr Shing, Convenience Store Owner
Sweat and tears
Mr Shing bought his store off a friend over 25 years ago. He works here 7 days a week, 13 hours a day. He has worked incredibly hard to support his family all his life, but ironically, hardly has any free time to spend with them.
Plastic toys kingdom
Did you know that in the 1970s, Hong Kong was the largest exporter of plastic toys in the world? Mr Shing and many others sold these plastic toys and you could find them all over the city.
Tides of time
The cupboard-sized store is chock full of drinks, cigarettes, rice wine and lots of traditional Hong Kong snacks such as wah mui (dried plum) and dried orange peel. Mr Shing used to sell a lot of plastic toys, but now that most children have phones and iPads, these toys are no longer in demand. Despite the long hours and stiff competition from chain stores, Mr Shing enjoys working in Yau Ma Tei because of his friendly neighbours.
Small independent convenience stores like Mr Shing’s face stiff competition from 7-11, Circle K and other chain stores that people are more familiar with. Did you know that there are 900 7-11 stores in the city as of today?