You ever wonder who’d be refusing to travel to a destination the second time where you know you’d be enjoying? It’s most probably because I’m in between old and new job, and it’s me wishes to cut down my expenses (clearly not working out with my shopping habit, even more so with the year-end discount). My sister eagerness had dragged me into the trip. I was not even in the mood for the trip planning. It’s a coincident in which my last minute picked motel was located a very convenient location to go anywhere we wanted. That had really set up great for a trip without a concrete to-go attractions.
I’d be lying I had not planned. I had the major attractions in mind but for the particular shops and restaurants, we had no clue until we decided let’s just explore an area on the map. ‘Life is like a box of chocolate, you’d never know what you gonna get.’ Forrest Gump said in the movie. And it’s making perfect sense as I explore during the travel.
I had been a tea lover since early last year. And to some extent, I’m particularly into the tea planted in Taiwan. It’s so exhilarating when I hear them introduce their teas for the season like a piece of art. The way they speak and the words they use had taught me a great deal what appreciation is all about. We all look up to that lifestyle.
As the flight enters the ‘Formosa’ from high above, the green fields on the island patched up like the last season’s patchwork fashion. They have the luxury to respect their land in the old fashion way still. They can grow and supply in some way; in contrary Hong Kong can only grow steel and concrete to meet a very different kind of demand. You just want to enjoy something that’s made in Taiwan. What’s made in Hong Kong these days? Do we instinctually buy the imports? It’s always interesting to learn about the differences of the Chinese communities and what represents the place under different governance and system.
I enjoy the quietness of evening simply because there’s nothing else but the music I listen to. It’s the only time when I read, think, type, arrange photographs. It’s all been clear that these are the most productive hours of myself in a day. This distraction free environment has been my mind palace.
Now when i think of my evening, there’s 98% chance I head home after work. Even on my rare weekend photo walkabout, I’d hardly stay later than 6pm. (Oh, this reminds me of when the last time I’d done these walkabouts?!) I feel like I barely know the city at night. Some people say the night is when a city come alive. Just what’s SOHO, what’s Lan Kwai Fong?
I was following a cinematic TV drama ‘Night Shift‘. The entire drama was filmed at night. It centered on a team of police emergency unit patrols in the most complicated quarter of our city. The heart of this show is how realistic the unit are taking on their jobs. The rest of the supporting characters all works at night, but often get neglected. Some come from complicated backgrounds in the gang, some are just ordinary people taking shifts in convenient store, and some are just the ambulance officers. All these interesting elements combined and collided into each other making the show so rich and alive. There’s often the intersection of life, the tension built up in complicated relationships, the sisterhoods and the life or death.
I often want to define what’s living a life to the fullest. I just don’t seem to have experienced this, experienced that. Is it about how much one makes in a month? the travel adventure one’d been to? the 3-star Michelin full course? It’s always about the money. I cannot help myself when I’m in a district where everyone just seem living better than I do. Maybe it’s the suit, maybe it’s the language. It’s the jealousy that I can hardly contained. Others all have a career in this stage of life, while I’m still on a lost boat. I figured whatever I do does not matter anymore. I’ll get it figured when time comes. Maybe that’s a story to tell years after. You can just call it fate.
There’s the space, the coffee, the locally crafted goods, the noon walk, the sky, the unfamiliarity between people, and of course the relaxing mood. I just can’t get enough of them ever since I’ve visited Taipei.
Some say the environment can put an impact on people, but happening that quickly in me was the first time.
I vividly remember in that late afternoon how the barista lady prepared a drip coffee on a wagon at the cafe. Later then served to a customer out at the corridor. I thought that was the coolest thing ever to have all the gadgets and precisions. Then someone appreciates coffee this way. I have seen enough this ‘popular-in-Japan’ coffee style on the internet, but to actually see it live was my first.
Ever since I stepped out of that cafe, I wanted to learn more about drip. I realized I’m already half way there with my regular coffee routine at home; from grinding the beans to brewing with coffee tools. All I needed is just a drip set, kettle, thermometer, expensive scale, and some good beans. I even paid for a cup at a local cafe just to know how it should taste.
In comparison to wine appreciation (which I also love), coffee is a much cheaper, more casual choice. There’s the technique involvement in order to get the perfect cup. It can be enjoyed alone anytime. And certainly not all about how a winery market and present their bottles. I never get why wine events always seems so glamorous with the attire. Moreover, I was never into the glam and totally not that type of person.
Interesting enough, at the time I was deciding which bean I should pick at a roaster,
I have gone from:
‘Bolivia grows coffee beans?!’
‘the Bolivia Peaberry tastes as round as the bean looks’