When former financial secretary John Tsang Chun-wah floated the idea of food trucks in 2015 as a tourist attraction, I knew the plan would flop. The food trucks started operating in 2017. After initial public interest, the food truck business began to limp. The government ended the scheme in June last year. Only six of the 15 food trucks now remain after the West Kowloon Cultural District invited them to operate there. To float an idea means to propose an idea to see if people are interested. If a plan flops it means it fails.
To limp means to walk with difficulty because of an injured leg. But to limp also means to develop slowly and with difficulty. Hong Kong's economy is now limping. It's good of the WKCD to rescue the remaining food trucks but it’s uncertain how long they can survive. Hong Kong has too many restaurants. The government has now floated the idea of night bazaars to revive the economy. During my six months in Taipei, I visited several night markets with many different types of street food. They are very popular with locals and tourists. Some streets are closed to traffic in the evenings for night markets to operate.
Will Hong Kong do that? Some officials have suggested that shopping malls remain open late to promote a night economy. But shopping malls are not bazaars. They lack the atmosphere of night markets. Prolonging opening hours is costly. If the government is serious about night bazaars, it should allow tai pai dongs, hawkers, and restaurant stalls on the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront. Visitors can enjoy food with a beautiful evening harbour view.
前財政司司長曾俊華在2015年提出美食車作為旅遊景點的想法（floated the idea），當時我就知道那個計劃會失敗（flop）。美食車於2017年開始營運。除了起初吸引到公眾興趣外，美食車其後便開始舉步維艱（limp）。政府於上年六月結束整個計劃。西九文化區邀請了15輛美食車於該處經營，現時只餘六輛還在。To float an idea是指去提出一個想法，看看人們會否感興趣。若一個計劃flops，那即是它失敗了。
To limp意即因為一邊腳受傷了，走路一瘸一拐的；但to limp也解作進展緩慢、舉步維艱。香港的經濟現在亦是舉步維艱（limping）。西九文化區去挽救那尚餘的美食車是好的，但也不能確定它們到底可以生存多久。香港有太多餐廳了。現在，政府又提出想法（floated the idea），舉行夜市以復甦經濟。我在台北逗留的6個月期間，拜訪了好些夜市，當中有許多不同種類的街頭小食。它們非常受當地人和遊客歡迎。有些街道會在晚上不予行車，讓夜市經營。
Michael Chugani 褚簡寧