Poagao's Journal

Absolutely Not Your Monkey

Jun 05 2003

I’ve gotten a lot done lately. I fixed my bike, di…

I’ve gotten a lot done lately. I fixed my bike, did my laundry and did my taxes. Turning in the tax forms this year turned out to be a lot easier than I had expected. All I had to do was go to the office, show them my ID card, and they printed out a list of all my income and exactly what I owed. Or, rather, what I didn’t owe, as I’m getting a small refund this year it seems. Every little bit helps. It was quite a relief as I really don’t have the funds to pay extra in taxes this year.

And yet there’s still so much to do. Yesterday, which was nominally Dragonboat Festival Day although all of the races were cancelled due to SARS, I took a trip up to New Beitou to scope out the Can-yuan, a teahouse that would be perfect for our interim scene. I took the MRT to Beitou, changed to the short New Beitou train, then got off and started walking up the mountain. It’s been years since Kirk took me up there, but I vaguely remembered the direction. My throat infection hasn’t quite cleared up yet, and I was going rather slowly, but it was a nice day and it was good to be out in the sun and hearing the sound of rushing water. The cicadas are finally starting to sing as well, one of my favorite sounds. You can tell it’s early summer because they’re pretty even and strong. Later, in mid-summer, they’ll start going in cycles.

The Can-yuan, however, was closed for rennovations, and has been for over a year now. There were other teahouses nearby, so I stopped in and had some tea at one of them, sitting out on the balcony overlooking Beitou valley. It was pleasant, and I was exhausted from the walk. One drink cost NT$260, but one drink plus two pieces of cake and a pudding cost NT$180. They must have really wanted to get rid of that cake.

None of the teahouses I visited on the way back down were any good, though, and another I had had in mind was also closed. It looks like we’re going to have to think of something else. I still can’t believe I can’t find a frickin’ office to borrow in Taiwan. I haven’t received any help whatsoever from my posts on Forumosa, which leads me to believe that most of the people on that board are stuck in boring, uneventful, and relatively low-paying jobs, a situation with which I can thoroughly empathize.

Part of the office problem is, of course, that we need it at a specific time as one of our actors, Rowan, is only available at one time. In any case, we’ll do what we can do. I captured the third tape of footage and it looks pretty good. We should have some more stills up soon. I think one of the hardest things about the editing might be choosing from all of the good stuff we have. The maxim of editing is, however, “kill your darlings”, and I plan to stick to it. If it serves the whole of the project, it goes in; otherwise, it’s gone. I see movies differently when I’m actually in the process of making one; I wonder about framing, direction, lighting, sound, looping, etc. Sometimes it even interferes with my enjoyment of the story, and I have to tell myself to stop thinking and just enjoy the flick.

Taiwan reported no new SARS cases or deaths today for the first time, well, since it started. I suspect this has more to do with the hotter weather than the government’s measures, but whatever works, works. Now we have to make sure it’s eradicated before the weather turns cooler again, and keep clueless government officials from crowing about it. We should keep our guard up, restrict travel to and from China, and keep enforcing quarantines. If they are actually being enforced, that is. Which I doubt.

posted by Poagao at 12:55 pm  

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