Each morning this week I’m greeted with a Snapchat from one of the kids from HK. He’s there for the Sevens. Don’t ask how a student can afford to be in HK for the Sevens because I’d also like to know and I’d also like to be there.
I haven’t been to HK since the eighties when I enjoyed two weeks acclimatisation there prior to going to Brunei for a Jungle Warfare Instructors course. We thought we were on a jolly for two weeks; the Army didn't. We spent the two weeks doing early morning runs and PT on the beach and long tabs in the New Territories by day. We had just one day and night off at the end and we made full and comprehensive use of it. As I said to the boy before he left, “whatever you do son, don’t go near Hot Lips bar in Kowloon.”
Alas, I discover it is no more. Like many things it is consigned to history’s rubbish bin but I did find a description of Hot Lips on the "Going Downhill," blog which sounds pretty much like an echo of my own! Anyway, Going Downhill gives Hot Lips, and HK in the eighties, a pretty good description which some of you who were there might enjoy.
"Gone is the Hot Lips Bar romanticized by an article in the New Yorker magazine referring to reminiscences of the movie “World of Suzie Wong”. One executive guest, I took around to see the city, wanted to go there. Soon after we entered the Hot Lips, we sat down in a large booth, the required escorts came and sat down next to us, the obligatory watered down drinks came and we of course we gladly paid. The escorts were definitely not comparable to Susie as their glow of youth had now to be applied with brushes, but they were reasonably attractive and had good teeth."
As it happened, when there we moved on to a bar in Cameron Road, the name of which was forgotten about 5 minuteness after walking into it, but I seem to recall spending a solid shift in there with occasion forays to place next door for a rejuvenating sauna. We started chatting to an American there who was revisiting the places he'd been on R&R from Vietnam. I obviously wasn't in Vietnam but I'd kind of like to do a "bars of my youth," trip...... or would I just be left sad and disappointed? ...... probably.