Our Xinjiang Beauties – Blooming in Hong Kong / 綻放在香港的新疆花兒

(按此看中文版)

There is a Chinese proverb that goes, “Hami is known for cantaloupes; Turpan is known for grapes; and Xinjiang is famous for pretty girls”. And with much honour, I am able to interview two beauties from two Chinese ethnic minority groups – Brittany WANG (Jockey Club Harmony Hall) and Dilireba TALIFUJIANG (Lee Shau Kee Hall).

With pale skin and big smiling eyes, Brittany is of Russ descent who is currently a Year 3 student studying Social Work at City University of Hong Kong. Dilireba, with darker skin tone and deep facial features inherited from her Uyghur genes, is a freshman of Civil Engineering and Architecture major.

Brittany of Russ heritage performs traditional Xinjiang dance at the Wellness Night back in April 2016. / 來自俄羅斯族的王炫月曾在今年四月份的Wellness Night 康體活動中大跳新疆民族舞。
Uyghur girl Dilireba enjoys the sunshine and city life in Hong Kong. / 來自維吾爾族的迪麗熱巴· 塔里甫江十分享受香港的都市生活。

Q: What do you think about Hong Kong?

D: I think Hong Kong is a place that respects the freedom of religion. It is really comfortable for me to live here. A few days ago I joined the “Feast of Sacrifice” hosted in the Student Residence, and it was a blast! As a Muslim, I have a diet that I need to stick with, and my friends are always attentive of my needs. There was a time when we went for a hot pot dinner and they took care of me and ordered food that I could eat.

B: Hong Kong is cold on the outside but warm on the inside. When I first came here, the city was in a politically sensitive situation, which I experienced a period of “coldness”. But since my major is social work, I get to learn about the real side of Hong Kong gradually. Although the city is fast-paced, people are actually very kind and compassionate.

Q: Is there anything that you are not used to living in Hong Kong?

D: I am not used to cooking. But it is inevitable since there is little halal food available in the school canteens. Actually there are not much halal restaurants in Hong Kong to be honest, and they are often far away from school. Also, I am not used to the humid weather here in Hong Kong, which is why I get allergies on my face.

B: It is so humid here! We are used to the sunny and dry climate in Xinjiang. After we came, we find it a little frustrating since clothes and blankets are hard to dry. Also, the fruits here are not tasty at all.

Q: Can you tell us more about your ethnic group?

D: My ancestors are of Turks. Ethnic identity and religion influence our culture a lot. We have many traditional festivals, for example Eid al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice), Eid al-Fitr (Festival of Fast-breaking), and Nowruz (Persian New Year). Nowruz is our biggest festival of the year. To celebrate, We eat Nowruz rice, wear flower hats, dance, etc.

B: My ancestors are Russians. As we did not follow any specific religions, we have had intermarriages with the Han Chinese since a long time ago. This has weakened our ethnic traces. Now, only the older generations know how to speak Russian. At home, my mother sometimes calls me Roya. It is a Russian name, meaning “the prettiest moon in the sky”.

D: My name means, “Loved by everyone, anywhere”. (She held her cheek with her hands like a flower)

Q: Not long ago, Brittany performed a Xinjiang dance in a hall activity. Do you plan to organize any activities so that people can learn more about your ethnic group and culture?

D: There are very few Xinjiang students here, not to mention students from the same ethnic group. It would be difficult to gather people to help organize activities.

Q: In fact, we would like to organize a cultural exchange activity with students from the 31 other provinces in China. We can be one of them, and at least let everyone know that Xinjiang is not located in the northeast of China.

Writer:   Betty WANG (Hall 10)
Translator:   Michelle CHIANG (Hall 10)
Images:   Brittany WANG (Jockey Club Harmony Hall), Dilireba TALIFUJIANG (Lee Shau Kee Hall)

~~~

中國有句俗語:「吐魯番的葡萄哈密瓜,新疆的姑娘一枝花。」今天小編有幸採訪到兩位來自中國新疆少數民族的大美女──王炫月(賽馬會群萃堂)和迪麗熱巴· 塔里甫江(李兆基堂)。

王炫月來自俄羅斯族,皮膚白皙,有一雙水靈靈的大眼睛,笑起來眉眼彎彎,社會工作三年級。熱巴來自維吾爾族,信仰伊斯蘭教,膚色偏棕,眉眼深邃,保留著祖先土耳其人的外貌特點,土木與建築工程一年級。

Russ girl Brittany enjoys the hall life very much in CityU. / 來自俄羅斯族的王炫月十分投入城大的宿舍生活。
Uyghur girl Dilireba enjoys the sunshine and city life in Hong Kong. / 來自維吾爾族的迪麗熱巴· 塔里甫江十分享受香港的都市生活。

在你們眼中,香港是個怎麼樣的地方?

熱巴:「香港是個非常尊重信仰的地方,在這裡生活很舒服。前幾天我還去參加了在宿舍舉辦的『伊斯蘭之夜(編按:宰牲節)』, 非常開心!因為信仰原因,所以平時飲食需要格外注意,大家都非常照顧我,甚至有次打邊爐,朋友們都細心買了我可以吃的肉和底料。」

炫月:「香港是個『外冷內熱』的地方,我剛來香港的時候恰好趕上政治敏感的時期,經歷過這裡的『冷』, 我的專業是社會工作,所以我會接觸更加真實的香港,所以慢慢我發現,這裡是個節奏快,但很有人情味的地方。」

在香港生活有什麼不習慣的地方嗎?

熱巴:「需要自己做飯的時候多一些吧,學校餐廳清真食品不多,其實整個香港也很少,還都比較遠。再有就是氣候太潮濕,臉上會過敏。」

炫月:「太潮濕!因為我們習慣了新疆晴朗乾燥的氣候,所以到這裡以後發現衣服被子晾不乾很苦惱。再有就是水果,咳,不太好吃。」(曾經滄海啊)

說說妳們自己的民族吧?

熱巴:「我們的祖先是土耳其人,民族和宗教共同影響我們的文化。我們有很多自己的傳統節日,比方說古爾邦節(宰牲節)、肉孜節(開齋節)、諾魯孜節(類似漢族的春節),這是我們最盛大的節日,要吃諾魯孜飯、帶花帽、跳舞等等來慶祝。」

炫月:「我們的祖先是俄羅斯人,因為沒有宗教信仰,所以很早以前就與漢族通婚,少了很多少數民族的痕迹,也只有老一輩的人會講俄語了,不過在家里我媽媽有時叫我Roya (音),這是俄語名字,意思是『空中最美麗的月亮』。」

熱巴:「我名字的意思是『所到之處人見人愛』。」(手托臉比花朵狀)

之前炫月在宿舍活動裡跳過新疆舞,妳們以後有沒有打算專門組織活動,讓更多人知道你們的民族文化?

熱巴:「想過,不過來自新疆的同學人數太少,來自一個民族的就更少了。專門組織活動會很單薄。」

炫月:「其實我們更希望連同內地其他31個省舉行一次介紹各地地方文化的活動,我們作為其中一個櫃檯,起碼讓大家知道新疆不在中國東北呀。」

文:   王琪 (舍堂十)
圖:   王炫月 (賽馬會群萃堂)、迪麗熱巴· 塔里甫江 (李兆基堂)

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