Twenty Four

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Throughout the conversations I have had with fellow travelers in the past years of solo backpacking they always end with a rather personal yet innocuous question – how old are you? Aside from the obvious revelation of me being the younger or the youngest interlocutor, the implicated exclamation as to my outgrown mental capacity does give me a lighthearted disposition to give my honest answer.

‘Twenty [insert a number prior to my current age].’

‘You are so young.’

I smile.

Yet, stepping into the age of 24 has the cognitive development shrunk from a tantalizing state of mind to a tacit call-to-action in proportion to the standard life agenda. Why is it an indicator of erudition to own an apartment in one of the most expensive cities to live in before 30 (just the possession alone, not how and not what else), and why is any success before 30 in general a much acknowledged achievement anyway? I frown – while a 12-year-old kid admit to college is a proud family business and billionaires make their fortunes out of unprecedented concepts and technologies can certainly justify the deep-rooted tenacity in parenthood as college drop-outs (Steve Jobs, Evan Spiegel, Mark Zuckerberg, Tyler Johnson, etc) , the age-acquisition gap as a foundation of modern life goals is a complete fabrication by the media, the main (the most handy) source of information, who disregards the hard work and its corresponding social alienation of the so-called genius and privileged before the ‘overnight’ historical success. If you still remember, there’s such thing called hard-working. And yes, even when you are beyond 30s. I admire John Hanke as much as Tavi Gevinson. And there’s Maria Grazia Chiuri.

Never has there been a more accessible era than what we millennial is experiencing in the pursuit of dreams. The rise of Instagrammers as a job still blows my mind, and the continuous delegation of personal space (aka live shows) as a form of inter-space real time human interaction terrifies me. I guess, after all, human being conquers the geographic barrier and manages to make a living out of such intimacy between you and me. As much as I refuse spending one hour time watching other people’s life instead of living my own, I surmise that the fame as reality celebrities rockets the success in many other aspects. At least, Kylie, the nineteen year-old, has a makeup line.

And I have none.

Model: Yannie So
Photography & text: Hong Hiu Ching


    1. Hong Hiu Ching

      Thank you so much Christine!!! I love seeing your post too! I know, the world is changing so quickly that sometimes it’s tiring to keep up all the time. xx Marg

  1. Atsuna Matsui

    Enjoyed reading this anecdote dear. You really are a great writer and I always enjoy reading your stories. I get asked my age quite a bit as well, and get that same response, “You are so young” as well. Embrace being young. Time seriously flies by and I try to appreciate living in the now.


    1. Hong Hiu Ching

      Thanks Atsuna! It’s so nice that you actually read what I write!!! I’m so touched hahah yea, me too, I always live the now but at the same time be hopeful about the future! High five young creatives! xx Marg

  2. Carmen

    I really like your point Margaret and I definitely agree with you. Those standards are pretty crazy today. I also know what you mean when people say , you are so young’. I always think, yes I am but this doesn’t mean I can live my life and get impressions from all over the world.
    Have a good week!
    xx, Carmen –

  3. Rina

    You are an amazing writer. I always get a little more uneasy as I get a year older. I’m not even thirty yet and I feel like I wish I had started some of the things I’m just starting now a bit earlier. Unfortunately that is not the reality so I just need to seize the moment and give myself a little break =P

    Rina Samantha

  4. Mercy

    I would love to be this young again 🙂 It’s nice to know you are doing what you want this early on including writing your thoughts out and into this blog. I still don’t understand this Instagram invasion, I used to only look at the life of real celebs through it but it seems that if you’re not in it nobody will pay attention to what you do including your blog. So I start building my Insta account that I miss looking at my favourite peoples’ feeds due to lack of time. Oh my, what a weird world we are living now 🙂

    1. Hong Hiu Ching

      Thanks Jordan for leaving comments here!!! You have such a beautiful blog also! True right? 24 seems so grown up already! xx Marg

  5. Jenelle

    Happy Birthday! I imagine there is a lot of extra pressure these days to do an achieve things when you are so young as there are so many wonderful examples out there of young people like Tavi or Margaret Zhang etc. But everyone has there own time line. You have plenty of time!
    xx Jenelle

  6. Erica

    Your photos are beautiful, however your writing in your posts are always so thoughtful and considered. 24 is a wonderful age, and I wish you live to the fullest as well as learning and gaining as much experience as possible 🙂 Happy belated birthday dear xx


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