Your timeless memories at the helena may - by helga ann
My mother, Ena Simms, came to Hong Kong in 1965 after taking early retirement from the BBC. She was a resident of The Helena May for two years (in 1965/66) and I used to make the trek from Kowloon once a week by bus, ferry and taxi to visit her. Her room was the very last at the end of the corridor, just opposite the terrace which is right above your office. Here we would sit and talk while my little son Sean splashed about in a plastic pool that she had set up.
It was very quiet in those days with little traffic on Garden Road and of course Cotton Tree Drive did not exist. We’d sit on our deck chairs and watch the Peak Tram ply its way up and down and we’d wave at the passengers. Naturally, we always went down for tea in the beautiful lounge, and for our favourite hot cakes (whatever happened to those?)
My mother enjoyed the convivial atmosphere she experienced at The Helena May and fostered many lasting friendships with like-minded expat ladies. Here she learnt Tai Chi and Chinese painting and continued these hobbies when she returned to London in 1967. Ena Simms kept diaries and was always writing articles about Hong Kong. During her years here, she regularly gave talks on Radio Hong Kong’s “Women’s Magazine” programme.