If you're like me and you live far away from any Asian countries, Chinatown is the closest thing we have to Asia. I live on an island in the middle of the ocean, far from my hometown in Taiwan. I miss the feeling of being there, and the closest thing that I have is Chinatown.
On one of my visits to Chinatown, this was the first time that I’d gone after I received my Diana Mini. This time, I brought her with me.
I was on a field trip with my Chinese class and we were there for the whole day. Since I had 24 exposures, I opted to go with square frame.
At this time of the year, it’s already close to Chinese New Year so the decorations were up everywhere. There were these flags streaming from banister to ceiling to banister of the Taiwanese flag and the American flag. The familiar image of the white sun made me smile.
We visited a Buddhist shrine, a few of my friends lit incense and sent their prayers to the sky.
My class entered an art museum, there were lots of puppets, ceramic pieces, manikins along the shelves. Before I moved to Hawaii, I lived in Taipei, Taiwan. And seeing these artifacts brought back the feeling of being in Asia.
Small things like the cramped alleys and the little flower shops make you feel as if you’re not in Hawaii anymore. It’s a different place when you’re in downtown Chinatown.
And then there’s the Maunakea marketplace; there’s food stalls, fruit stands, and stone lions all around. The structure of the buildings and the entrance are so unique and different than anything else on Oahu.
And of course, there’s the people. All the people that I have met and talked to in Chinatown are the sweetest. They don’t nag at you to buy things, but they offer you everything they have. They smile and let you take pictures of them too! I love that you don’t even have to ask them, you hold up your camera and they simply smile.
It may not be the main tourist attraction but it’s got a homey feeling to it. The Chinese herbs and the smell of food fill your senses, and it’s just great. So if you ever get a chance to check it out, bring some money and your camera! The bustling streets of Chinatown is a great place to be. I know I love it there.