I want to try this thing where I post at least one entry per week, and I have to post about the things that happened that week. This is so that I can look back on it in the future and remember the little things that happened.
I got back to Taiwan from the Philippines past 12 midnight, and I was able to take the bus to the city at past 1am. When I got to the MRT station near where I lived, I took a cab home. The driver asked me if I prefer to be dropped off outside my building (which meant he had to drive inside the alley) or outside the main street. I asked him if he knew how to get back out if he went inside the alley. He said I didn’t have to worry about him because his driving/direction skills are good so I asked him to just drop me off outside my building so I wouldn’t have to lug my suitcase from the main street to my building.
I must have slept at around 3AM but I still had to wake up by 7:30AM to go to work. Zzz. It was a pretty normal work day but I had a bunch of emails to catch up on so the day passed by pretty quickly.
At night, I met up with some of my high school friends because Tifa was in Taipei for a weekend. We hadn’t seen each other since graduating from high school (maybe?) so it was nice seeing her again. We spent the entire night just talking about the things that have happened to us over the years, and where we currently are in our lives. Felt nice spending time with long-time friends, reminiscing about stuff from the past, and sharing about plans and goals for the future.
My first IMPIS (Taiwanese) friend has finally passed the diplomat exam thing and he’s starting his training next week. Yay, we’re so happy for him because he has spent a lot of time reviewing and preparing for this exam. To celebrate, and because our other friend came back to Taiwan to visit, he treated us to an all-you-can-eat hotpot dinner. The last time the three of us saw each other was last year. We didn’t even realize it, and we couldn’t believe how fast time flew. We only spent around 3 hours together that night, and the question I asked myself after was, “How do you fit a year’s worth of stories and life updates in just a couple of hours?” Well, you just talk about the “major updates” I guess. The next time we see each other again would probably be after another year. I wonder how we’ll be by then.
As I grow older, I’m slowly realizing that money isn’t everything. When I was younger, I used to think that having a whole lot of money would make me happier because I could buy a ton of stuff and spend money like crazy. However, over the past few years, while I still believe that money can buy happiness (through the things/advocacies you could spend it on), the amount doesn’t have to be so big. As long as I can comfortably live day to day and still have money for spontaneous expenses/splurges, then I’m happy. I say this because my friend’s sister who is in the finance industry earned a TON of money from her previous internships, and is about to earn even more money in her next internship, but she’s under a LOT of stress and pressure and she’s genuinely not happy. I wouldn’t know for certain but this is how my friend described the situation to be. Her sister doesn’t have time to make friends because she spends her days cooped up in the library sending out resumes, and she’s still young but she’s already burnt out. I’m taking her as an example of my previous realization, but this is not to say that everyone in the finance industry (or other high pressure/extremely stressful industries) are not happy. I guess it also depends on the personality of the person.
It was a pretty slow day that I had time to go to the bank in the afternoon. I needed to go because I got locked out of my online banking account. Ugh, that’s what happens when you have a bunch of accounts requiring different passwords, and for online banking here, you need 3 different sets of things to remember. Ugh!
Left on time because it was T’s birthday. We bought chicken chop and milk tea to take home, and we also ate his favorite fragrant oil rice and noodles from Jingmei night market. At home, we watched The Intern. It was a really simple birthday celebration because he just wanted to spend time together and he didn’t want to do anything special.
One of my high school friends Paul came to Taipei to visit, and so we met up for brunch together with my other high school friends Ann and Lorraine who are also here. He wanted to try Belle Epoque, this brunch/cafe located somewhere in Ximending and because I suck at directions and map reading (this is what I get for choosing knots as my specialty when I was still a scout – most of which I don’t remember anymore!), I got lost and had to walk a LOT to find my way to the restaurant. Eventually, I made it. We only had 1.5 hours in the restaurant so we quickly ordered and started catching up. I went for the smoked turkey panini with cranberry sauce and it was pretty good.
After lunch, Paul decided to have a haircut so we accompanied him to Crazy Cut. I couldn’t stay long because I had somewhere else to be in the afternoon, so I left after some time. Bought Krispy Kreme from Breeze Nanjing on my way home becauseHaritt’s didn’t have any flavors that I liked left.
At night, we wrapped dumplings and then cooked them. I gave up trying to wrap them nicely so I ended up doing them empanada style using a fork to seal the edges. Hahaha! Once we had eaten dinner, we started talking about the following day’s lunch and who was going to prepare lunch. We ended up playing mahjong to see who would be in charge of lunch. I lost. Huhuhuhu.
Since I lost, T and I prepared lunch (well, what’s new?). We woke up late and didn’t have time to cook actual meals so we made a typical brunch instead – toast, bacon, omelette, and beef! We watched the movie Absolutely Anything while eating brunch.
In the afternoon, I was too lazy to move so I was just in bed watching YouTube videos. By late afternoon, T asked me if I wanted to go out since it wasn’t raining so we ended up going to Sunshine Park to check it out. It’s this really huge park located in Xindian that has a track field, a lake, a long bridge (connecting it to Bitan, I think), an oval field for rollerblade practice (apparently, classes are held there but it’s also open to the public for leisure use at certain hours of the day), a jungle gym, and this area where you can rent bikes. They also have food/drink stalls and portalets. Since we got there at maybe around 6 or so in the evening, the bike rental was already closed. We made a plan to go back there one afternoon so that we can rent bikes and go around.
Despite not having bikes, we still walked around. We even crossed the bridge and took pictures. After some time, we were both hungry and it was time for dinner. We had heard from T’s brother that there was a night market nearby so we checked it out. From what my cousin told me, it’s probably the only night market in Xindian, and it’s also the only night market (according to signs around the place) serving South and Southeast Asian food. We started with the chicken chop because T wanted to try it, and then we fell in line for Char Koay Teow. When we got to the front, the cashier person told us that we had to wait at least 40 minutes for our order. We felt that it was too long so we’ll just try that next time. We went to other food stalls to order Bak Kut Teh, Mee Goreng, and Teh Tarik instead.
They also had other items there such as Nasi Lemak, Laksa, Roti, among other things. Those will be for our next trip.