Saturday, 26 December 2009

A day shopping in Táibèi

After a long trip across Táiwān, my mother and brother decided that for our last day on the island we should aim to have a look at shopping in Táibèi before travelling to Tōkyō on a morning flight.

It was a little unfamiliar travelling around on Christmas Day, but of course East Asia was never Christian. Thus, all the shops were open as normal and we did not hesitate after my usual big breakfast of chocolate cereal, bread and fruit to go to the nearby Metro station.

I was looking for a black belt to supplement my brown one, which was naturally of the wrong colour for my black jeans. I was used to belts selling for something like $20, as I had bought my two current ones for at Victoria Market. However, in Táibèi I was in for a rude shock when I looked with my mother and brother for a new black belt and for a bag to replace the worn, cheap leather one I had bought for $35 several years ago. Almost every belt cost the equivalent of over $100, and my mother refused steadfastly to pay that amount.

However, there was a wonderful treat in store nonetheless! I was able to replace one of several poor-quality leather bags I had bought several years ago at the Victoria Market. My mother, upon seeing my old bag, promised me that she would give me such a Christmas present, but it took us a little looking in Táibèi's department stores before I was able to obtain the right bag. Although it is not wholly leather - in fact only the sides are - my mother said that this bag will provide me with a greatly superior quality to the bags I had bought at the market. Probably as a result of simply feeling high-quality shoes and bags given to me as gifts, I have grown very averse to shoddy goods and am afraid of my tendency to treat everything I encounter very roughly without care, which is seen terribly in the condition of many of my books - most especially a 1984 VFL yearbook that made the amazing error of saying Chris Mew first played in 1908!

After the shopping expedition, we had some lunch. The food in Táiwān was remarkably good all through, though I will admit I made a few choices that were bad for my mass like buying cream cakes instead of the abundant vegetables found in Táiwān. In the afternoon, I was, as was by now becoming normal, completely exhausted and I rested for the trip to Tōkyō tomorrow.

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