I took off one afternoon to visit a coffee place at Duxton Hill called The Plain, but it turned into a sort of mini discovery-trail instead :)
In the meantime, I passed by The Pinnacle, just a few minutes walk away from my workplace….
And was intrigued by this gorgeous wall mural too. Can anyone spot the satire in the mural and this photo? :)
But anyway, back to my story.
The ‘trail’ lead me to a very fascinating Garang Guni shop. It reminded me of one of those tiny shops where something magical might be found inside. Though I actually had a nasty experience there but whatever, not gonna dwell on it.
A cute, yellow thing outside the shop, with a pretty rusted texture. I love that yellow! It’s so childlike and quirky. Is this a fire hydrant? Coincidentally I learned a few years ago that there are several different types of fire hydrants with different colours as indication.
Many shops and cafes with a rustic / industrial deco have been appearing island wide. But hey, this is the real deal!
I have a fascination with old, rusty items. I also have a curious love affair with bicycles (even though I don’t know how to ride one). So I was ecstatic when I saw this ol’ boy propped against a dingy wall.
Noticed the logo of the bicycle and creeped closer to have a look, and was informed by bicycle-enthusiast boyf that the brand of this bicycle – “Flying Pigeon”, apparently has a very rich history behind it.
I was quite skeptical. What could I possibly find with such a rickety old bicycle?? Well, a quick Google search lead me to a web page. And let me just hijack my own post (wait, whut?) with a video from a Toronto based Flying Pigeon online shop….because I certainly wasn’t disappointed! What a delightfully whimsical surprise :)
Credits go to Flying Pigeon Bicycles.
The Flying Pigeon is an iconic bicycle that was first launched in China in the 1930s. Designed to be light, sturdy and beautiful, it was a hit phenomenon and was soon declared to be one of the 3 necessities of living in China – right next to a sewing machine and a watch.
By the 1970’s, millions were sold – and prosperity was defined by political leader Deng Xiaoping as “a Flying Pigeon in ever household”. Today, it’s considered one of the most influential bicycles in the world! Imagine that!
The pigeon, perched high with wings spread, was an expression of peace in troubled times during of the Korean war. I can imagine how a humble mode of transport would come to symbolize freedom, liberty and most importantly hope, to an entire nation. There’s just something so intriguing and romantic about the whole history behind that rusted old pigeon, standing tall and proud. And it always makes me happy when I learn a little something new about the world we live in :)
With that, I put away my camera (well actually, the battery died), pleased with the knowledge that I’d learned about a brand as classic as the FP today.
In fact, I’m even thinking of getting one myself!
Like every iconic brand – or even place, or person – out here in the world today, the FP delivers a powerful message – one that inspires and touches the human spirit, one that shifts cultures and creates revolutions.
This message, or meaning, draws you in and forms an almost unbreakable bond between the consumer and a product. And that to me, separates a mundane, run-of-the-mill product that you buy on a whim, from a well-loved product that you carry around in your heart and mind for a long time – one that is passed down from one generation to the next, etched in history forever.
I’ve found a new love in the Flying Pigeon. And if anyone has such a brand like that in mind, I would love to know what it is and what it means to you :)