Lamma Island, 3:02PM – Fair.

entry 13

I stand in solidarity with parasols. Do not forget them. They are not Victorian things of the past. They are not made of wood and Japanese paper. They are not feminine. They are available at every convenience store. They are made of metal and UV-protection fabric. They are practical. If you find yourself outdoors on a given summer day, around 3pm, a parasol is the difference between one final glass of water after a long night out or straight to bed. Braised of deep-fried? Vitamin D or heatstroke? I am loyal to mine, a hand-me-down from one of the first families I met in Hong Kong. A talisman of summer, my first parasol is a sign of initiation, or perhaps resignation, to a subtropical life. It is green and silver, the colors of jungle and hot concrete. It has the mechanical temperament of an older relative: stubborn and arthritic. Its neck is no longer able to collapse as it once would to fit into my black bag. Instead, it cranes its plastic head out, like a chihuahua determined to observe the world at an altitude of hip height. Older relatives and chihuahuas probably have more in common than we think.