While stumbling around the hills of Central Hong Kong on Wednesday night, I came across the quasi-familiar sight of a guy lying in a blue hammock strung across an outdoor escalator.
It suddenly clicked and I realised exactly where I’d seen him before. On an Island Line train on Monday night, a man erected a hammock between two poles and lay in it for several stops. A few passengers became pissed off and alerted MTR staff, who put a stop to the antics at North Point station at around 11.30pm.
[Hong Kong hammock guy's controversial MTR debut. Via SCMP]
When I approached the hammock guy and his friend, they were both more than happy to chat, and frankly a little surprised that they’d been recognised. They’re both in their early twenties and asked to be identified as Romanians for this article, though I'm not sure why - they definitely weren't Romanian. Other than that, hammock guy and his accomplice wanted to keep their identities a mystery and their motives unclear.
Though the MTR affair appeared to be a one-off - seemingly just an exhausted man going the extra mile to get a few winks during his commute - hammock guy revealed a much bigger objective to take his vocation to more extreme places in the city, including Hong Kong's rooftops.
The pair then told me they were going to a few other spots nearby to erect the hammock and asked if I wanted to join. Obviously I did.
[Hammock guy puts his life - or at least his general health - in the hands of a gate outside a residential complex in Soho]
After visiting several hammock-friendly places, including some bamboo scaffolding, we made a late-night trip to McDonald's before hammock guy and his friend wandered off into the night.
[Photos by Joe McGee]