On day in the summer of 1967, I was playing with my friends. My father was a low level government employee, and we were living at a compound for government employees in Kennedy Town. We found a package about 6 inches long, wrapped in newspapers, in a flower bed. I picked it up, and started kicking it like a football, with my friends.
When my parents heard about it, they got very upset. I was made to kneel in front of the small family altar at the corner of our apartment for a long time. That was the last time I was punished physically, and I remembered it well.
Why were my parents so upset? Because it happened at the height of the 1967 riots by the leftists in Hong Kong. It was about this time that Lam Bun (林彬), was burned to death.
One of the leftists’ (左派) mode of operations is to place bombs on the streets, in buses, streetcars, etc. Government buildings and quarters were also obvious targets. These bombs were commonly called 土製菠蘿. Many of them were fakes. But there were also many real ones. A lot of people, including children, were injured or killed by these bombs. I was old enough to realize the danger. So it was really stupid of me to pick up the package. I could fully understand why my parents got upset, and I never blamed them for punishing me.
The behaviour of the leftists left a deep impression. I still remember how they gloated over Lam Bun’s death.
Why is there so much hatred in this world? To this day, I have a deep abhorrence of violence, even in the name of justice.