Monday 21 July 2008

St Andrew's Church

On Sunday afternoon, after our search for flats in the morning over in Happy Valley, we popped down to the ferry terminus in Wan Chai. The Star Ferry is famous for plying the waters between Central and TST in Kowloon since 1868, crossing around 500 times a day for about 15p. There are a number of lesser known routes - one of which is between Wan Chai and TST. This is very handy for us, and it's also very photogenic. The viewon this route is much better, as you get to see all of the buildings of Central in one sweep with Victoria Peak just perfectly framed behind.

Once over on Kowloon-side we managed to avoid going up Nathan Road, which is just far too busy and full of tailors and watch salesmen, and headed up to Kowloon Park. It's a lovely spot in the centre of TST, with fountains, banyan trees and lots of benches. It's also got a swimming pool at the top end which we haven't yet figured out how to use.

Opposite the swimming pool is St Andrew's Church, the target of our journey. This is the church where great-grandfather Norman Pope, Granny's father, was vicar and where Granny herself was born. The church is still there, an oasis of calm in otherwise frantic TST, and is a very active Christian centre with services in English, Cantonese and Filipino (excuse my ignorance, perhaps their language has another name?).

The Old Vicarage is known a Fellowship for Phillipino Christians, where they can bring their children while the parents work during the day, and where they can otherwise meet and take courses.
It's a pity Granny can't remember anything of that time; she left when she was just 18 months old after her father died of Peritonitus. He was clearly well-loved and had a lovely plaque in a line of three along the back of the inside of the Church. I hope we find his resting place in Happy Valley in the next few weeks.

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