If Bangkok is the place I think of when I want a short reprise from work, then Taiwan (and its many cities) is the place I think of when I want to take slow, long walks and photograph the small details of ordinary life.
Of all the cafes I have been to, anywhere, this is one of those I remember most vividly. It’s the kind of place that takes you away from reality temporarily. It has a bit of everything in almost the right amounts – nothing too whimsical or clinical, too bright or too dark – yet overall, maybe a little over-curated in places, but still oozing with character.
I’ve been saving these pictures for a good day, but I got carried away, and it has been perhaps two years since I visited this café and design store in Taipei. But, it is still there (I checked their FB page to be sure), although I am not sure how it has evolved since.
This late morning, I was on a comfortably-packed train, wondering if I should drop by the poke bowl shop to pick up lunch before heading for the office. I had a small craving for it, but not enough to rule out a simple sandwich, or a bowl of noodles, completely.
Lost in thought over my first-world problem, my idle fingers found the folder of film-taken pictures on my phone. I should post something on the blog, I thought above my lunch thoughts.
I flipped through pictures of my Italy holiday, my multiple Taiwan escapades, and weekend walks, pleased to see them again. Then my finger hit a folder of experimental double-exposed (and somewhat failed) photos. I had connected with a stranger on the other side of the world for this little project, and for my part, I wandered into the streets off East Coast Road to complete it.
But as I looked at these photos, it wasn’t the stranger I thought of. Or the streets I could no longer name. Or the reason why I couldn’t take a proper double-exposed photo. My thoughts strayed onto the companion who’s absent, yet undeniably present in all the photos.
Strange how life could change the course of a friendship, how archives and archives of fond memories were not enough to keep it together. Not nearly enough.
Then the overhead sound system announced my stop. I barely heard it, but my body has learnt the routine, and I stepped out to join the rest of the working crowd.
Many firsts in life,
and Green Bakery is where I had my first vegan bakes. Yummy.