Sometimes (all the time) work just gets too crazy and you get really desperate to GTFO. Well I didn’t have the balls to actually walk away from my life so a friend and I went to Taipei for a weekend.
I left work 2 hours early on a Friday (with permission, thanks for checking), and caught an early evening flight to TPE. This is also where I realized I really do love airplanes. I was on an A340, and even though it was one of my least favorite aircrafts on the CX fleet, I had about a good hour of zen, just listening to the hum of the engines and the opening and closing of those aluminium compartments. It was the calmest I had been in ages.
I landed in TPE, went and got my sim card like a pro, and hopped on a bus to the city. I suck at the whole bus thing even in Hong Kong, so that was a major win. My friend had already shopped all afternoon and I was quite exhausted from the week so we just went to an all-you-can-eat hot pot place (馬辣 “Ma-La”, it’s a chain, just Google it) around the corner from our ‘hotel’ (more on that later), and drank lots of beer. It was da bomb.
Our hotel. We had good rates, HK$600 for a double bed room for 2 nights I think. It’s a business hotel. It’s in a building with clubs, bars, movie-themed… something, and our somewhat newly renovated business hotel. It’s dark and kind of modern, but really just looks like a karaoke joint; it even sounds like it because that’s what’s right below our floor. NO FRET, RACHEL TRAVELS WITH EAR PLUGS. MAJOR LIFE WIN.
The next day we got up and decided to check out this place called 貓空 “Maokong” (it literally translates into “cat space/empty”. I was so excited. We even had to take a cable car to get the the bloody mountain. Cable cars that had teeny tiny windows and were effectively glass ovens.
BUT THERE WERE NO CATS THERE.
It was the middle of summer, and we were on a mountain with lots of sweaty tourists. We tried to walk around to find a nice place to chill at but surrendered to one of the few air-conditioned cafes, which to be fair, was actually a pretty nice place to chill at. We had a beautiful view of the city, which of course, I didn’t remember to take a picture of, since we just saw at the cafe for an hour or two playing dumb games on our phones… but here are some photos from the cable car! It was bloody beautiful.
Would I recommend it?
Yeah. If you have nothing to do, need a place to chill at and feel like you went somewhere. There’s a temple there if you’re into that stuff, but otherwise it’s really just cafes and… I think they’re famous for their tea there? The packaging has cats on it, because Cat Mountain right?
That night we did the usual, went to the night market and back to the hotel. Actually we were so tired from being in the heat all afternoon we barely lasted in the night market. We bought food and beer and went back to fall asleep while stuffing our faces.
The next day (Sunday) we were already heading back, so we went to 度小月 “Du-Xiao-Yue”, a Taiwanese restaurant, for a quick lunch before we picked up a few other things.
It’s such a cute place and there’s usually a line, but perhaps since it was raining and kind of early, not a lot of people were there. We did have to share a table with some other people, but not really a problem when the food is AH-MAY-ZING!
Did I mention we had a few things to pick up? Oh, you can get prescription glasses that only takes 20 minutes to prepare for you to take home! Let’s be real, it took way longer than that when you need to shop around, get your eyes checked out (optional), and if they have lots of orders you obviously have to wait. I am super happy with them though, I even got the tinted ones that are meant to be better for your eyes when you look at screens all day long.
So that’s my weekend in TPE, from… 3 months ago! One of the highlights for the trip was actually the fact that we got to the airport early and I caught an earlier flight home! Ha!