How I Educated The Hong Kong Tourist Guide

The following was reported by a Sun Zhenjun (孙振军).  It appears to be an old essay, but the forums and blogs are fanning the flames and increasing tension between Hong Kong, mainland China and Xinhua.

(Chinazawen)  How I Educated The Hong Kong Tourist Guide.  By Sun Zhenjun.

[in translation]

At the end of June 2005, the Xinhua Agency organized a training/study session.  Afterwards, there was an arrangement for the participants to visit Hong Kong and Macau to view the prosperity and stability after their respective returns to China.

This time, the reception assignment in Hong Kong was delegated to a commercial tour company, and this resulted a mild storm.  Of course, it provided a life experience -- in mainland China, every person is the king inside his own home; once he goes outside, this does not work anymore, especially in groups.  Mainlanders need to change their habits.

At about 6am on July 1, we had to rise and go to the airport.  The airplane took off after 8am and arrived in Hong Kong after 10am.  When we got out of the new Hong Kong airport, a 40-something-years-old-looking (actually, she is only 30-something-years-old) female tourist guide named Huang directed us immediately onto a tour bus.  After a long trip, I thought that they would take us back to the hotel where we can wash up, have a sip of water, deposit out luggage and take a short rest.  This is a normal expectation and also the proper way to treat guests.  Surprisingly, the tour guide took us directly to the scenic sights.

This day happened to be the anniversary of the return of Hong Kong to China.  There were celebrations, there were demonstrations, there were traffic restrictions and we had to make many detours.  So we went and stopped at a number of spots briefly.  At around 2pm, we were taken to an out-of-the-way backstreet basement restaurant to have a so-called "group meal."  We thought, "Maybe they will now take us to the hotel and take a break?"  But tour guide Huang refused to listen to our suggestion and took us over to more scenic sites ...

At around 11pm, the bus finally pulled up at the hotel.  The busload of more than 20 men and women, old and young, had undertaken compulsory military exercises for more than 16 hours continuously already.  At that moment, tour guide Huang issued a directive: "Let's move it, people.  Go back to your rooms and rest early.  We will depart tomorrow morning at 7am."  At that time, a veteran news reporter almost 50 years old who could not take it anymore suggested in a nice way: "We are too tired today.  Can we get a bit more sleep tonight?  Can we start out an hour later tomorrow?"

But we did not expect that the apparent weakling Ms. Huang responded like an angry lion and roared: "This is Hong Kong, not mainland China!  I am the tour leader and you are not!  You have to listen to me!"  The entire busload of people were stunned.  The old comrade who made the suggestion was apparently not psychologically prepared to be berated and said angrily: "I only want to make a suggestion.  Why are you so angry?"

I was dozing off at the time, but I was awaken and I realized what was going on.  Ordinarily I would have just tolerated it.  But when I thought back to all the unfriendly acts by this Hong Kong woman throughout the day, I wanted to teach her a real lesson to show her the panache and strategies of the mainland news workers.  So during the several minutes while we were in the lobby getting our room keys, I reached agreement with five or six of the news workers.  Before I went upstairs, I went up to tour guide Huang and I said very politely: "Miss Huang.  I solemnly inform you that you have been dismissed!"  Tour guide Huang was shocked and her mouth turned into an "O" shape.  She pointed to her own nose: "Dismissed?  Me?"  I said, "Yes.  If we find out tomorrow when we get on the bus that you are still the tour guide, we will immediately withdraw from the tour and complain to the Hong Kong Tourism Board and the relevant media outlets."

Tour guide Huang's face was contorted.

Under the repeated pleas from tourist guide Huang and the mediation by the Hong Kong reception representative and the Xinhua team leader, we reluctantly withdrew our notice of dismissal provided that she will formally apologize to the entire group before we depart tomorrow and before then she must come to our room to receive formal criticisms from us.

After waiting anxiously outside our room for more than 10 minutes, we finally sat down and we agreed that she could enter.

I said: "Ms. Huang.  Please be seated.  On account of the fact that you behaved badly all day, and especially just then, we have discussed and decided that I shall represent the group to issue you the follow stern critical education:

First, Hong Kong has been returned to China.  Hong Kong, which is the piece of land that we are stepping on right now, is the territory of the People's Republic of China.  You must understand this point.

Second, the basic law of the nation is the Constitution.  From the basic laws to the derived laws, the regulations and the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China, there is nothing that says that Hong Kong citizens are higher beings or that Hong Kong citizens are the superiors to mainland Chinese citizens.  Thus, we are completely equal to each other.

Thirdly, to put it politely, we came here to visit Hong Kong and our relationship is a cooperative one; to put it more bluntly, we are the honored guests and you are just a service person who happens to be slightly older than usual.

Fourthly, outside of Hong Kong in the not-yet-unified Taiwan which is not hoisting the five-star flag yet, in Europe, the United States and Canada, we are high-class intellectuals who were born, raised and are now working in the new China.

Fifthly, you kept showing off today that you have a high income and you are wealthy; but according to yourself, your apartment is only more than 50 square meters in area and the total worth of your clothing and shoes is just over HK$1,500.  Although there are still impoverished areas and people in China, under the great, glorious and correct leadership of the brilliant Chinese Communist Party, uncountable number of people are living better than you are!  For example, I have two apartments each with more than 100 square meters in area (I was just bluffing her) and I paid for them with cash; my military pants are not expensive, but my underpants are Adidas and worth more than 2,000 RMB.  Would you like me to take off my pants and show them to you?  (Ms. Huang's blushed hotly and she quickly said: "No need, no need.  I believe, I believe").

Sixthly, based upon the above, you still have residual British subject citizen consciousness.  Your geographical bias is too heavy.  Your professional ethics is too poor.  Ms. Huang, what do you say?

Ms. Huang said: "I'll remember it, I'll remember it ..."

Over the next few days, Ms. Huang seemed to have transformed into a completely different person: she spoke softly, she smiled widely, the schedule met our needs and her service attitude was perfect.  I almost fell in love with her.  Anyway, we were all very happy.

Here is an example of an Internet comment (via Boxun):

[Preamble: Xinhua agency's Sun Zhenjun told the Hong Kong tour guide Ms. Huang: His underpants cost more than 2,000 RMB!  I wonder how many pairs of these underpants the great People's Republic of China can afford to buy after canceling all the bad and good debts?  More than 300 million Chinese people are struggling on the poverty margin, many young people and their parents kill themselves because they could not pay for tuition, many young children are prevented from attending school, Project Hope is really a beggar's project for handout, and yet someone is showing off his 2,000+ RMB underpants in front of a Hong Kong female compatriot.  Is there anything more shameless, disgusting, arrogant and overbearing?  ...

1. A Xinhua Agency worker's underpants are worth more than 2,000 RMB!

Sun Zhenjun is an employee of the national news agency of the People's Republic of China, Xinhua.  He claims to be a news worker for the Party in mainland China.  He is male, and 30 years or younger last year.

Sun Zhenjun boasts that he has "a home with more than 100 square meters in area paid for with cash; although his military pants are cheap, the underpants inside are Adidas and worth more than 2,000."  Sun Zhenjun did not say whether it was RMB or USD, but let us assume that it was RMB.  A pair of underpants worth 2,000 RMB is really awesome!  I  wonder how many pairs of these underpants the great People's Republic of China can afford to buy after canceling all the bad and good debts?  According to Hong Kong most gifted scholar Chip Tsao: "You wear silk underwear if you have hemorrhoids."  I don't think it is wrong to wear silk underwear if you have hemorrhoids, but it is f**king crazy to want to show off your underpants, especially to a female Hong Kong compatriot.

According to authoritative sources, the sales data in Beijing were 7,534 RMB per square meter in 2005 and 8,792 RMB per square meter in 2006 ...  Thus, the value of Sun Zhenjun's house is at least 1 million RMB.  Adding interior decoration, furniture, consumer electronics, processing fees, legal fees and taxes, he would have to pay more than 2 million RMB.  If he was able to put down 2 million RMB in cash, then he must be wealthy.  Even more importantly, his underpants are worth more than 2,000 RMB, so he must have at least several tens or even hundreds of millions to behave like that.  How does a Xinhua worker get so wealthy?  The Central Committee Department and the Audit Department personnel assigned to Xinhua should be investigating the source of his wealth?  Presently, Hu Jintao, Wu Bangguo, Wen Jiabao, Jia Qinglin, Zeng Qinghong and others make only 3,146 RMB per month in wages.


3. Why did this loathsome thug want to "educate" the Hong Kong tour guide?

First, he was dissatisfied with the reception.

1) Sun Zhenjun complained that "This time, the reception duty in Hong Kong was assigned to a commercial tour company."  According to Sun Zhenjun, Xinhua is an official government, party and Beijing organization.  Even though they suck up to the leaders, they are still official representatives in Hong Kong and should be received by the China Liaison Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Hong Kong office, the People's Liberation Army headquarters in Hong Kong and the Xinhua local Hong Kong office.  At a minimum, they should be received by the Hong Kong SAR government's Protocol Department.  Instead, their trip was "arranged by a commercial tour company."

2) There was no Rolls Royce or Mercedes-Benz to greet them.  Instead, they were taken directly onto a tour bus.

3) There were no pretty girls to hug and kiss them, but instead there was just "a 40-something-years-old-looking (actually, she is only 40-something-years-old) female tourist guide named Huang."  So the older woman ruined Boss Sun's expectations and caused him to create a mild storm in which he showed how tough Xinhua can be.

4) At lunch, they "were taken to an out-of-the-way backstreet basement restaurant to have a so-called 'group meal.'"  Please note what the terms used by this Xinhua thug: "out-of-the-way," "backstreet," "basement," "so-called" and "group meal."  The sense of anger fills these incoherent words.  This is such a letdown for this Beijing party official who lives in a place with more than 1,000 square feet and wore 2000+ RMB underpants.  According to His Honor, their lunch should have been a full Manchurian-Han banquet in a rotating restaurant on top of a palatial skyscraper hotel on the busiest main street ...

The above was just a small selection from this one Internet comment, but I'll spare you the rest of that.  Instead, I will bring you to the real point of this blog post.

If you read the entry at Chinazawen, you should note that the essay title "How I Educated The Hong Kong Tour Guide" is followed by this qualifier in parentheses: 幽默杂文大赛.  Literally, this meant that the essay was an entry in a contest for the best humorous essay.  This was intended as humor and sarcasm, making fun of everything in sight.  Unfortunately, the essay is now being propagated through the Internet and condemned without that qualifier.  Somehow, that is even funnier than the essay itself.