Searching for a Tail

Pottinger Street in Central, Hong Kong: named after Henry Pottinger, the first governor of Hong Kong; menace to all women in heels and many a drunken man.

Known in Chinese as “stone slab” street, this uneven flight of stairs is famous among residents for being both the bane and saviour of partygoers in Hong Kong. The upper part between Lyndhurst Terrace and Hollywood Road (pictured here) claims well-heeled victims on a regular basis, while the lower part serves as the go-to destination for every costume party-fancy dress emergency you could ever think of.

Leading up to Halloween and the Rugby Sevens when South Stand participants get decked out in everything from Bruce Lee jumpsuits to full Chewbacca regalia, Pottinger Street is thronged with people searching stall after stall for the perfect get-ups, wigs, and accessories. On a normal day, though, there isn’t usually too much activity besides the juice man and his freshly squeezed fruit.

This afternoon, as I was headed back to the office after lunch, I was making my way down the steps when I came upon a woman trying on a tail. Yes, that’s right. She was wearing jeans and a sweater… and a leopard tail hanging out the back. To be perfectly honest, I probably wouldn’t have noticed her at all, except for the fact that her companion was holding the end of the tail and shaking his head. “No, no, no, no… not this one,” he declared.

I wondered to myself what exactly he was looking for — was it fit? Was it style? Perhaps this one just wasn’t the right cut. I didn’t wait to find out how many others she tried on for size… just another work day in Hong Kong.

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3 thoughts on “Searching for a Tail

  1. That is AWESOME! Now I want a tail… can I get a tail? Seriously, though, what a fun way to think about what might be happening there. Thankful I never wear heels.. so I’d be just fine (until I tripped on a stone anyway)

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