Woke up early Wednesday to some warm breakfast breads, soy milk, and the All-Star Game - remember, we're 12 hours ahead here. We didn't stick around to witness all 15 innings, but it was good to see some good old American baseball on the tube.
At around 11am, we headed out to pick up Megan. She was eagerly waiting for her release, so we hopped on the MRT (subway) and went towards downtown Taipei City. We decided to go to Sogo, a high-end shopping mall that caters to people with a taste for international fashion - Givenchy, Kate Spade, Lacoste, Balencia, etc. We window shopped through the 9 floors and worked up an appetite.
Like any good mall, Sogo has a food court, so we ordered up some Japanese udon and rested our legs. For desert, we enjoyed this little delicacy, mango shaved ice. This dish is worth its weight in gold, my friends. It consists of shaved ice topped with fresh mango (it's in season right now), sweetened condensed milk, honey, and a scoop of mango ice cream. My sister and I are discussing opening a stand at the state fair this year and selling only this. We would make a killing.
After food, Dad headed home and Megan and I went back to the Ximen District. We wandered around the shops, discussing the finer points of Taiwanese fashion and her annoyance with FOB-by Asians from SoCal. We decided to get out of the heat by seeing a movie and we settled on Hancock, disappointed that Dark Knight wasn't coming out till the next day. After the previews, we were watching a Japanese kid's anime cartoon for about 5 minutes before realizing we were in the wrong movie. Oops. Megan used her Chinese skills to figure out we followed the wrong crowd, and we scurried off to the proper theatre. My review of Hancock: it was 80% of a movie. Not totally bad, but only because it wasn't a full movie. About the best thing I can say about it was that the theatre was cold.
After the movie, we called my cousin Su Miao (Diane) and her daughter Heidi, who is about Megan's age, and made plans to meet at the Shilin Night Market. I've written about this place before, and not too much has changed. We were wandering through the crowded market when apparently the cops showed up. All the illegal vendors scattered, pushing their carts into alleys and the backs of shops. It was quite hilarious.
After some more mango shaved ice and more Taiwanese iced, gelatinous, soupy, beany goodness, I dropped Megan back off at camp and headed home.
Thursday morning I decided that I needed to work out. All I've been doing here is eating, shopping, and sitting around. So, I walked over to the school down the street and started my routine. It was so humid, I felt like I was going to puke by the end. It took me a good hour, after I had showered, to stop sweating. New Jeremy rule: don't work out in Taiwan during the summer.
In the afternoon, we went out for tea with my aunt and cousins. The restaurant we went to was an Italian pizzeria (I know, weird) where they served us small pizzas, tortes, canolis, and cappucinos until we couldn't eat any more. To the left is my dad with my cousin Lannie.
After tea, Jo, Heidi, and I met up with Megan to go to the movies (again), but this time to see Dark Knight. A strange thing about movies in Taiwan is that you are given assigned seating. We ended up with crappy seats, and Jo complained, scoring us free tickets to a new movie. Peoples: go see this movie! Even from crappy seats, this movie blew me away. If you liked Batman Begins at all, you will be blown away. And, Heath Ledger will win a posthumous Oscar.