This beggar has got to be one of the most graphic, gruesome and gag-inducing guys in Hong Kong. Usually seen on the bridge going towards the Immigration Tower from the Wanchai MTR Exit A5, I had almost forgot about him since I hadn’t seen him in a long time. However, one look was all it took to get his image emblazened into my head again.
You see, the Wanchai Parma Ham Leg Beggar is aptly named because he has a huge, rectangular raw flesh wound on one of his legs, which he displays proudly by extending it into rush hour human traffic. One just can’t help but stare at how deep, red, wet and fleshy it looks (not to mention painful)! Apparently, he (or his pimp) makes a new cut every morning so that the wound is fresh and bloody. Today, the wound is around 1-1.5 inches deep and sometimes, it even looks like he’s been cut to the bone.
At times, the Wanchai Parma Ham Leg Beggar can be seen with a piece of old cloth hanging near him on a makeshift clothesline, which has been stained multiple times by his bleeding wound.
To be honest, with the wide range of beggars in Hong Kong, it’s really a shame that this guy has to endure so much physical pain just for a few bucks. I mean, I don’t think he makes any more money than the old lady down the street who’s only kneeling down and pretending to be homeless. If I were him, I’d stop the painful cutting, but of course, it’s probably not his decision to make.
Anyway, do pay our latest beggar a visit and see whether you still have your HK-sized appetite afterwards. I, for one, have lost all my cravings for parma ham…
6 thoughts on “Hong Kong Beggars: Wanchai Parma Ham Leg Beggar”
I have seen him couple of times in the bridge as you mentioned and didn´t know what to think, a mix between sadness and surprise.
I think police should do something about it, no?
I think there should be a forced confinement in a hospital for injured people who beg in such a state until it is healed. I am sure it will be a different topic to make a new injury as opposed to just prevent one from healing.
Anyhow in many countries begging is regulated. If you cannot prove that you are in need of money, you do not get a permit, and the police arrests you if you still do. Same should go for these people.
Thanks for your comments! Unfortunately, the beggars are 'owned' and controlled by gangs, triads or larger forces that the local police don't dare to deal with.
I wish we could do something about it every time I see a mangled person on the streets, but I'm afraid the only thing we CAN do is refrain from giving them money, since it all goes towards their pimps. Instead, how about an egg tart, burger or something else tasty…?
I really got choked up by your recount. This morning's beligde broodje didn't go down so well. It makes me wonder what had truly been done to help the HK beggars. In a small way – you've probably done more by simply shining a light on this social outrage. Boo to the triads! Boo!! Get your money somewhere else….
Parma Ham? You're too posh – it's bacon around here…
I don't understand HK people, the rich have more money than they, and their children, can ever spend, yet they only donate money when they're made to feel guilty by witnessing some poor bastard suffer.