Let us begin by introducing the characters you will hear throughout this work.
A semi-retired professor of art teaching at a university in Hong Kong. He has written several obscure books on art history, but earns most of his income translating technical documents from Chinese, English, and Japanese. He used to hide his homosexuality, and even married once to satisfy his traditional parents old-fashioned beliefs that "unmarried men can’t be respected in Chinese society". However, after his parents passed away, Wan-Sze divorced and he has gradually come to realize that there is no need to apologize for his personal preferences. At the same time, he has learned when to be candid and when to be strategically quiet.
An independent journalist working in Hong Kong, Nadia has published several books on Russian language learning and cultural anthropology. In her free time, she enjoys creating post-modern art, doing "hot yoga", and traveling to exotic destination. In recent years, however, she has become something of a workaholic. About a dozen years ago time she was romantically involved with Wan-Sze, but more recently she has become jaded about all intimate relationships. She lives with two pet cats and never complains about their indulgent behavior. Secretly, she envies those cats: they never seem to worry about where their next meal will come from, and when not sleeping, keen observe the world around them.
A retired poet and former meditation teacher, now working part time as a translator and manuscript editor for a very minor publishing company in Hong Kong. When young, he majored in Indian philosophy, and spent some time at a yoga ashram in northern India. Now he is skeptical about all attempts at nirvana and he spends most of his time in a coffee shop, drinking soy lattes while working on his computer. He has many friends in the LGBT community and has done what he calls "a good deal of experimenting" but come to the conclusion that sex is largely an instinctive biological reaction that has little to do with love.
The son of a Syrian refugee and a British journalist, Kasim is now studying medical interpreting at the University of Hong Kong. He works part time at a coffee shop that Wang-Sze, Nadia and Will frequent. Sometimes when he is not studying or busy serving customers he joins their conversation. Fluent in five languages, Kasim has become increasingly unsure of his identity. During his teens he identified as "Islamic" but in recent years he has become disenchanted with all religions. Nonetheless, he also rejects Western materialism and dislikes the way so many people in Hong Kong seemed obsessed about money. He seldom talks about his personal life. Most people regard Kasim as a paradox. He is frustrated by the way so many people try to stereotype him into various boxes.