City Out of Breath
From the very first line in which author Ken Chen begins his essay made me anticipate some sort of hike that they would be going on or a mission of some sort. “So all night, we only walk in one direction: up” Could it be that they are escaping from somewhere? Are they on a vacation? Further into the reading I realized that they are in the city of Hong Kong and that he and his father are being led through the city by a “tour guide” When Ken Chen begins to describe the city, he is so descriptive that it makes me visualize what he is seeing as he is describing the city.
In my own opinion, when I’m reading essays or novels, the one thing I like the most is when authors are descriptive. The reason for that is when I’m reading, I begin to picture it in my head and then I understand the reading that much more. “This essay is an attempt to describe a city that is itself already a description—Hong Kong is a description of time. ” This sentence in the essay really made me think what Chen was trying to say. From what I understood of the sentence was self-explanatory, because Hong Kong has so much to describe within, trying to describe even more would be nearly impossible.
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The writing is what makes this essay. Chen encounters various people through his journey to Victoria Peak and they all remain nameless throughout the essay. That was another thing in the essay that caught my eye. The title itself was what made me think a lot. What did Chen really mean that Hong Kong is “out of breath? ” Then I realized- both the essay and the town are constantly moving relating back to the phrase “out of breath. ” The essay is constantly moving from one situation to another and the town of Hong Kong is a fast paced city,