Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Jan 12 2003

Er-hu music has been broadcast into my room all da…

Er-hu music has been broadcast into my room all day today, ranging from old traditional tunes to Pan Yue-yun’s Greatest Hits, thanks to today’s Annoying Community Program. I really hope my landlord decides to get me new windows, of course, but I doubt even that will keep all the noise out. Like a determined burglar, the activities usually held downstairs will find a way to let everyone within a half-mile radius “enjoy” their volume, thick glass or no. I suspect the Buddhist monks downstairs, and while I’m not sure I could take a monk one-on-one, I’m pretty sure I’d lose if they ganged up on me, as religious groups are wont to do.

I ruined my breakfast yesterday. I wanted to make pancakes, but I’m so inept I ended up burning them on the outside and undercooking them on the inside. The batter was too thin as well, so I ended up with just one large, burnt pancake that oozed batter from the inside. My resulting culinary disappointment coincided with a strange urge to go walk around by the river, so I took the subway over to the train station and walked over to the park that lies in between the floodwalls and the Danshui River. A few men were practicing their golf skills by launching small white orbs as far as they could across the river and judging their distance by the splashes they created. I would have protested at this pollution if I didn’t know that the acidic quality of the water probably dissolves the balls before they hit bottom.

The park was muddy and depressing after recent rains, and walking along the river was strangely unsatisfying. Perhaps what I need is a river that doesn’t look and smell like the runoff from a massive toxic waste-producing factory. I walked back towards the train station, stopping along the way at Beef Noodle Street, where I took this week’s video clip to show you not only Beef Noodle Street, the home of truly delicious (especially on a cold night) beef noodles, but also to demonstrate the crazy speed at which scooters fly through this bottleneck, despite the row of restaurants. Beef Noodle Street is in the middle of a pocket of old buildings from the Japanese era or even before, one of many such little pockets throughout Taipei, especially the western part of the city, along the river. HBO was on the TV, and the noodle vendor was celebrating his shop’s anniversary by handing out men’s dress socks to customers. I accepted the gift and quietly put them back in the box before I left. Taiwanese dress socks tend to be a bit thin for my tastes.

On my way back I took a couple of shots to put up on my photography page, which has been duly updated as well. Though the river was disappointing, the walk over there and back was worth the trip. I need to get out more.

Tonight someone’s showing a movie at the new Source, so I’ll probably go have a look. The Source is one of those places that seems to have poor patronage no matter how nicely it’s decorated inside. Perhaps that location has bad Fengshui or something, being located so close to CKS Hall. A shame, really, as it’s so much better than the old place.

posted by Poagao at 7:15 am  

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