On what I walk to see...

"Objects do not have any intrinsic meaning- that meaning is conferred on them by us- and that different people, and the same person at different times, may confer different meanings on the same object." (Hammersley, 1989, p. 135)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The White Peacock of St. John the Divine

Feeling like to pay St. John a visit these two day but... alas, with my physically capablility, it might be a bit too far for me to walk down there-- since 13 hours time difference and an ocean and a continent apart with me sitting in Taipei, typing this note. 8-O lol

So I went back to some pictures I took and came across the white peacock leisurely strolling alone in the park.... all aloof and paid nobody no mind... on August 9th.

Nice peacock.  Hope you are keeping yourself warm.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The music clock at Sogo Department store

There is this nice fancy clock right above the east main entrance of Sogo Department store on Zhongxiao East road.  At around 4-5 minutes before the hour, little people would come out and sort of perform to the music of "It's a small world."

How cute!

Yet, somehow I have this feeling that they seemed to have remodeled the clock and it doesn't look as exciting as before.

The most interesting thing, though, is that I saw a group of 4-5 Caucasian-looking foreigners came out of the door right beneath the clock as I was waiting impatiently for the show to start... I looked at them and thought... "Wow... foreigners..." as if I have never seen non-Taiwanese before... (although, God knows, maybe they are also Taiwanese).

I am a nut case... I know... 8-O lol

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

北門-承恩門 Chengen Gate- and 北門郵局 Beimen Post Office

北門-承恩門 is one of the four remaining gates of the old Taipei city.  The adjacent 北門郵局 Beimen post office has also been there for almost a century or so.

Following are the pix of 北門-承恩門 Chengen Gate as per the model of the East Metro Mall.

In my senior high school years, for three years, the bus trips would take me to where Beimen is but I apparently only saw an old building.  8-O lol

The most memorable story I had was that, one day in my senior year, I got on to the bus, woke up maybe an hour or two later, and saw the  building.  I thought I had missed my stop only to realize that, because of the demonstration on the street, the bus didn't move much.  8-O lol

Saturday, December 3, 2011

The temple & Keelung Miaokou 奠濟宮/基隆廟口

Since I was in Keelung, I had to go to the Miaokou Night Market where one could find all types of nice eats and a whole lot of them are traditional Taiwanese dishes.

I would love to test them all out except for... man... only have 1 stomach and there's only so much one can eat! 

Though it is called night market, many of the venders start to run their business during the day time. 

In my much younger and ignorant years, when I heard the term "Miaokou," which means the entrance of the temple, I thought it referred to the Mazu temple next to my uncle's clinic.   Guess it was because, when I go to the market, my focus has always been on food and most of my blood would be busy rushing to my stomach-- leaving little in the air.

Then, one day, I realized that there was another temple there.
It was not until yesterday did I pay the temple a visit for the first time--- and came out with this question in my mind-- whose temple is it?  8-O

After some research, I realize that 奠濟宮 is a temple dedicated to general 陳元光 (Chen Yuangguang).  General Chen was from the Tang dynasty.  He had led the Han people to settle in 漳州 (Zhang-zhou), a region in the Fujian province and contributed greatly to the development of the region.  After his passing, people in Zhangzhou call him "開漳聖王" or the "Sacred Prince, Developer of Zhangzhou."

Because a lot of early immigrants in Keelung were from 漳州, the 奠濟宮 temple was built in 1873 so that the people could continue to worship and seek spiritual support from "開漳聖王" or the "Sacred Prince, Developer of Zhangzhou."  And, because there were so many worshipers visiting the temple, street venders started to gather around the entrance of the temple (Miaokou) and eventually formed the market as we know today.

Gotta say sorry to the Sacred Prince for not knowing who he was until today.... and... especially when my ancestors also came from 漳州 (Zhang-zhou).

At least, now I know.... better late than never... I guess.

I also saw for first time how the night market is set up.  I have been going to night markets alike my entire life but it never occurred to me, sort of, how venders set up their stands and form the night market...

Eagles at the Keelung Harbor

I have been to Keelung so many a time but never knew that there are eagles hanging out at the harbor... speaking of the lack of observational skill... 8-X

Just so happen-- yesterday, I was thinking to myself... bye bye hawks... don't know when I shall see ya again. 

Today, I went to see my uncle who owns a clinic in Keelung for my sinusitis and throat problems.  Didn't get to see him because he happened to be going overseas today.    Instead, I saw them big birds flying low above the deck...

So I asked this gentleman, "What are those big birds?"

He responded, "They are eagles.  They are like migrating birds and you get to see them in winter."

And, apparently, eagles are the city bird of Keelung.

Guess, hawks... today I saw your cousins? 8-O lol

To see the above pictures, clip on the slideshow...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The day the day dragonfly stood still

Came across this clip of da dragonfly in front of St. John the Divine.  Took this friend of mine around town that day and showed her the unfinished.

On our way out, she took a pamphlet of St. John which the dragonfly came resting on and we walked the dragonfly.


One thing I said that day... in our conversation... health first and all shall follow.

There ain't no nothing grander than health... however piece of crack kinda state I am in... ain't no nothing grander than health. 8-X lol

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Andrea Bocelli in Central Park

I made it to see Andrea Bocelli in Central Park on Sept. 15.

It was windy and rainy that night.

Not to mention that I was psychotic almost at the institutionalizable grade-- and it was not really too much a good idea for me to be amongst "a lot of people" (apparently, more than 70,000 people- and can you imagine feeling thinking all 70,000 of them have you in their mind- of course, NYPD included).  Yet, since I was not yet institutionalized, I could walk and I got the free ticket, I made it to get to the concert to see Andrea Bocelli in Central Park

The wait on the outside was long, time-wise but the path towards the great lawn once passing the check point was even longer.... man oh man... all those slopes.  At the same time, I also had to deal with the delusional facts that everyone knows me, including Andrea Bocelli, and they were talking about me.

Go figure....

But-- ain't no nothing was gonna stop me especially when I was not behind the gated door-- which one can check in voluntarily but not getting out in the same fashion.

I was determined to see Andrea Bocelli in Central Park.

Regardless, my friend and I made it to the concert before it ended.

Would have been great if we had the front row VIP seating.  Unfortunately, we were so far back that we could hardly see Andrea Bocelli on the stage... Yet, we did spot him once every so often as some small white figure up there.  lol

Regardless, Andrea Bocelli in Central Park on Sept. 15, 2011?

I was there, I lived it and I have my own clips to prove it! :-D

The Prayer: Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli
VIP section version

From where I was

New York, New York
VIP Section version

From where I was...

Time to say goodbye: Andrea Bocelli and Ana Maria Martinez
VIP section version

From where I was

Nessun Dorma
VIP Section version

From where I was...

Time to go....

Monday, August 22, 2011

Riverside park

Marianne Moore: "Beauty is everlasting And dust is for a time"

I think this is beautiful...

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Friday, July 29, 2011

The day the big bird saved me from the pouring rain

"How do I tell this slow rat that the rain is pouring down in no time?"
After the first "videography" gig in my life, I decided to take the remaining of my walk along Riverside park at around 5-6 o'clock.

It was getting a bit cloudy though the weather seemed to be relatively fine still...

Then, I saw this gentleman filming something with his camera... also... a red-tailed hawk hanging out on the nearby tree...

When I got closer, I stopped for the big bird and tried to take a clip or two before it eventually flew away...

It was at the same time when I heard the sound of "rain" although I didn't feel the rain drop yet.

Just when I was watching the big bird landing on another distant tree while wondering to myself, "Am I hallucinating the sound of rain?"-- that gentleman who was then back on the bench asked me, "Did the hawk fly away?"

So I replied, "Yes.  I think it heard the rain..." while huge raindrops finally started falling on my arms.

In my imaginary world, this was what happened from that gentleman's perspective...

So I asked that woman with a cane, "Did the hawk fly away?"

She looked back at me with this response, "Yes.  I think it heard the rain." as she looked down on her own arms.

I remained seated, thinking to myself... "Strange woman... what rain is she talking about?  She must have disrupted the hawk and now the hawk is gone..."

It was then when I felt raindrops coming down.

Since we were by the exit of 108th street, all of us near by tried to get out as fast as we could at our own top speed.

As for me- without an umbrella and unable to run- all that I could do is keep walking on....

The rain eventually came down to Broadway from Riverside Park as I was arriving at my building... just so happened... quite a few heavy drops caught me but I escaped the heavy rain.

So I thought... I would have kept on going along the park should I have not stopped for the big bird...

The big bird saved me from getting all trenched from the pouring rain...

The rain brought forth by the same storm causing all the havoc...

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Joe's Shanghai

I took my mom to Joe's Shanghai in Chinatown the other day... ordered our favorite juicy buns/soup dumpings and the Shredded Eel with Yellow Chives.

Some people who shared the same table with us seemed to have some problems with the juicy buns... the way I was taught is to bite and suck... 8-O

Biting the top of the bun off and suck the juice or soup out...

Monday, July 25, 2011

The first same-sex couple married in NYC

A picture of the first same-sex couple who got married today in NYC.

Another record-setting day I and many others live through in New York (state)...

Saturday, July 23, 2011

what it takes to get there (unmentioned)

This question comes up to my mind again and again, "What is the biggest challenge I find in traveling?"

Transportation itself.

On moving vehicles... airplanes, subways, buses or cars... two words summarize my entire existence: "pain" and "discomfort".

Forget about the explainable discomfort as a result of the sitting in any vehicles that move-- or not.

Them bumpy roads... them bumpy roads... them bumpy roads.....

To the others such are only roads bumpy; to those in pains, each bump wakes up a whole universe of pains... one bump at a time-- up or down-- undiscriminating... all bumps together weaves up a web of pains.... inescapable... inescapable... shall you be blessed with such to endure...

On foot... the body gets tired easily and needs frequent rest while the speed ain't so fast and the distance I could travel is actually still pretty limited.

Interestingly, whenever I tried to get to a place or to partake in an event nowadays, one thing that comes to my mind first is-- what it takes to get there-- while, the trip itself often unmentioned.

So I thought, many a thing I see and experience might be nothing grand to anyone else...

I had climbed not up to Mt. Everest and either did I dive down to the Mariana Trench (only if I could- though I did move myself down to Bed, Bath & Beyond.  8-O lol)

One thing that might have made things meaningful to me- what it takes to get there (unmentioned).

Friday, July 22, 2011

I am hot

I am hot and you might be hot, too.

According to weather.com, the temperature in Central Park was as high as 104 degree, which set up a new record high for July 22nd.  It is also the second hottest temperature on record.

How hot is it?

So hot that I did not take a walk today... although, on a day when I voluntarily stop my daily walk, I live through a record-setting day in NYC.

The temperature at 6:23 PM by 110th and Broadway
Current temperature by Riverside Park.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Caffè Taci

I tried to get some old friends together to go to Caffè Taci last Saturday.

It was a nice night out since it's been a long while since I went to the opera night... almost a year or so.

Took my mom as well although she was not too familiar with opera at all.

Following is the clip I tried to take when Marc and Scott sang the nice duet "Au fond du temple saint" from Les pêcheurs de perles by Bizet, and, of course, with Iya on the piano.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Tree skin

I never really pay much attention to the skins of the trees...

When I look at trees, I look at their leaves, branches, the trunks, roots and... OK... the bark also.

These past few days, I started to touch the trees... weird as it might sound... it makes me feel good touch the trees... almost like it helps the flow of energy or qi... and I feel they benefit from receiving my energy.

It was then and after when I started to see the bark of the trees.

After many a trees I touched, it occurred to me....

When many living things grow up, they change skins or shell etc...

What about trees?

Wonder whether it would hurt when the trees try to out grow the once-upon-a-time new skin that no longer fit?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

You don't see what you don't know?

I took a rest by the once-dead though seems to be back alive tree during my walk today... observing it with due diligence and extreme degree of curiosity-- trying to figure out whether them leaves belong to the tree itself...

All is serene and calm.

All of a sudden, this huge noise on Riverside Drive gave me a real good shock... thought there might have been an explosion of some kind, or,  firecrackers.

I turned around to see what might have happened and saw this cyclist and his friend came up to the sidewalk from the road.

It was a flat tire.... the tire all of a sudden exploded.

I overheard their conversation-- pondering about where they might be...

"We are at around 94th street."  So I had the info volunteered.

Another guy stopped by... a friend of these two.

It must have been pretty annoying... a nice ride interrupted by an accident as such.... so I thought to myself.

The tire needed to be changed and they were wondering where they might be able to get it done.

Although I had no idea, I couldn't help opening that big mouth of mine again, "Try 96th street.  It is a big street."

The guy with the flat tire asked, "Is there a bike shop?"

"Not sure."

Seeing his friend of a phone, so I replied further, "Google 96th street and Broadway and see."

Not too much longer, I found them getting ready to move...

Out of curiousity, so I asked the last cyclist to arrive, "Anything on 96th and Broadway?"

So he replied, "Yes.  There is a bike shop at 96th and Broadway."

I went... 8-O

How on earth did I know that there is a bike shop at 96th and Broadway when I don't even ride a bicycle?  Not to mention, it's been over a year since I walked along 96th between Broadway and Amsterdam....

Isn't it what they say... you don't see what you don't know or... what your body no longer knows?  8-O lol

Regardless, I didn't see and I didn't know... though... I guess... I sort helped.

View Larger Map

Saturday, July 16, 2011

So... I have to keep on walking

Something happened overnight... I woke up with the pressure inside of my head all blown up...

I tried to shake it off but it simply wouldn't go.

As I was trying to explain to people what exactly it is that I felt... I thought of an analogy...

You see.. it is similar feeling you get in an airplane when the plane decendes too fast from the sky... as a result of the pressure change... you sometimes might feel that pressure build up in your head and in your ears...

Except for, it doesn't even require my being in an airplane... it comes when it comes and it feels like eternity waiting for it to go away...

Might have something to do with the walk I took yesterday although, to be honest, distance-wise, 111th to 65th street is actually within the normal range of distance I travel through on foot nowadays.

The whole pressure building up in my head kinda feeling, logically, might have something to do with problems in the cervical area.  Yet,  it ain't like I was walking on my neck?! 8-O lol

Regardless, I felt I should keep on walking today even though the body was still tired.

I walked along Riverside Park-- going from 120th street down-- in search for a tree, or, more exactly, a once-up-a-time vivacious on-its-own-capacity tree.

I had forgot where it was and finally found it again between 93rd and 94th along riverside drive.

I paid it a visit and bid it farewell... and was on my way back to Broadway-- that was when...

This big bird came down with wings spread wide at full speed from above, almost flew right into my face, continued shooting across the riverside drive, and, took its landing on the other side.

When I finally got to the other side of the street and managed to do a bit of the tiny hill climbing... off went that big bird again back to the other side.

So I reckoned... "I think that red-tail hawk recognizes me and it is playing hide and seek with me."

Although...  it was not really necessary for it to scare the heck out of me... dear.

And, I moved on and, at some point, I got back home.

Come to think about it...

What does it mean to see a red-tail hawk crossing my path?

So they say... "The hawk is one of the Spirit Guides. It is a messenger of the Great Spirit, and encourages us to be observant and aware, and to break through a life of being unaware so that we can see the truth."

Thursday, July 14, 2011

65th street benchmark

Nothing fancy about my walk today... other than...

Yo... I made it down to 65th street after a few hours and many a stop--- and even paid a visit to Bed Bath & Beyond by Lincoln Center.

I used to walk down there and further... though it was also my first time to be in the neighborhood of Lincoln Center this year.

I did take the M104 back uptown.... on my priority seating in Zen moments most of the trip...

Did hang in the office and got my body rested for an hour or two.  Yet, on my way home, my body didn't seem to be feeling too hot and it was doing the crippling thing in all different ways.

The way I see it... come on, that body of mine, you could have told me to stop. Not my fault.  8-O lol

Regardless, that body of mine took me down Riverside Park first and all the way to Bed Bath & Beyond from 111th Street today.

I am so proud of that body of mine!!!  Good job!  Good job!  lol

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Rainbow over the sky of NYC

A question I have for myself... why am I tired all the time especially in recent days?

Might have something to do with them walks of mine that last for hours... 8-O lol

Anyway, after I got home from my friend with a broken foot's place, I went for a walk... a shorten trip since it was almost 6 o'clock already in the afternoon.

On my way back, I got caught in the pouring rain... though... my body was feeling all nice as soon as it started to pour.

The clouds and thunder quickly moved east and I continued to travel back north... that was when I saw the huge rainbow across the New York sky... and took them pictures in the rain under the rays of the setting sun.

And, I thought... gotta be someone else caught under the pouring rain right underneath da rainbow.

P.S., I thought that I had caught the secondary rainbow on my camera... unfortunately, can't find its trace anywhere.... unless I am started to see thing... 8-O 8-X lol

Sunday, July 10, 2011

There is a grandmom at the next stop

Took my mom down to Chinatown today... and, to avoid stairs for the elderly and the disabled, we took the bus back.

Used to be, we would take M103 till 3rd avenue and 42nd street before switching to M104 across the street.

Unfortunately, little did I know that MTA had change the route of M104 at some point during this past year... M104 no long goes cross town to UN... instead, it turns back uptown at 41st.

Can't blame no one else except for my own ignorance.... and... who said ignorance is a bless? 8-O lol

So I figure, if we were not to take the subway from Grand Central station, we could catch M4 on Madison avenue right off 42nd.

So yours having more and more problem moving and my mom the doesn't fancy to walk anyways dragged ourselves down to Madison avenue only to find out that...

Oops... the roads were blocked... possibly a street fair earlier on....

So I said to my mom... "We have to walk down two blocks to get to the bus stop."

We got there- both dead tired... accompanying us was a grandmom standing there all alone.

Grandmom started talking to me... telling me that she missed the bus at 7:32, the 7:52 was a no show and it was already 8 o'clock something.

At some point, I saw a bus... my M4...

I was so happy and appologized to Grandmom because our bus had come.

Grandmom decided, though, to take M4 with us as well...

Just when we were busy deliberating, communicating, and planning, M4 turned at the corner right before reaching our stop.

Seeing another M4 coming, we thought... maybe that one was not in service and we would have to take the next one to come.

Then... that second bus turned as well... aiming to continue its detour on 3rd avenue.

All three of us stood there and went... 8-O

I decided to walk down two more blocks to reach the bus stop before that one...

Thinking... "Well, now I can catch you before you turn away!"

Sometime after my mom and I got to the other bus stop, I saw M3 coming... the bus that grandmom had been waiting for for over 40 minutes by then.

The bus driver stopped and the door opened.... and... I opened my mouth...

"There is a grandmom waiting for the bus at the next stop for over 30 minutes."

The bus driver might have been sort of confused and might be thinking to himself... "When aren't you getting onto the bus but telling me there is a grandmom who has been waiting for the bus for over 30 minutes at the next stop."

So, eventually, he asked, "Which bus are you taking?"

I replied, "M4 but there is a grandmom who has been waiting for M3 for over 30 minutes at the next stop.  Please don't turn around before your reach that stop.  Thank you."  8-O lol

So the bus took off while passengers on that bus must be starting to get annoyed by this non-passenger was causing a delay in their journey...  oop... can't please everyone... lol 8-X

Both my mom and I watched the bus moving like a mama hawk and a younger hawk... wanting to know whether that bus took a detour before reaching the next stop....

At some point, we both thought it reached the next stop though we had no idea whether grandmom finally got onto her bus or whether my big mouth has anything to do with the bus reaching the next stop (could have been the road block was finally removed)....

Since we missed two buses in a roll, I can think with my knees that it would have been a long wait before we catch the bus.

M4 finally came... and... by that time, of course, the road was no longer blocked. lol

Friday, July 8, 2011


My friends took my mom and I out for a dinner at Ouest the other day.

I must have walked by this restaurant a million and a time but had never stepped in there.

In addition, for all these years, I had thought that this is a small bar-- not knowing that it actually is really huge on the inside.

Nice decor, great atmosphere and family-friendly, too!

I had the Roasted Rabbit while my mom had the Pan Roasted Sturgeon....

When everyone tried out my rabbit, they all seemed to like it!

Roasted Rabbit with Garlic Capellini, Mushrooms, Pearl Onions and Natural Jus
Hope the day will come soon when I am back to the money making business-- so that I will be able to take my friends out to nice places, too! Or, pick up cooking some fine food other than noodles at least! 8-O lol

And, come to think about it... haven't taken my mom out too much this round...  If it were not my friends, my mom would have been stuck eating my 5 for 1 bananas plus vegis and meat purchased only on discount during her stay in New York... 8-O lol oops...


肥前屋 is supposed to be a Japanese restaurant that is really famous for its "eel rice" or  鰻魚飯.

So, one day, my sister decided to treat my parents for some Japanese and I went along... lol

Because this restaurant is so very packed most of the times, we got there really early... right at the opening time for the dinner hour.  After we arrived, in no time, the line was forming at the front with people trying to get in.

Personally, I like the food there... though... well... I love food in general... lol

Would recommend you to try it out shall you be in Taipei...

Sept. 15th, 2010

View Larger Map

104 Taiwan Taipei City Jhongshan District Lane 121, Section 1, ZhōngShān North Road 13之2號

Something I learned from Da first trip- diabled

My trip to Seoul and Shanghai last summer was the first trip I took on my own since I became some kind of a handicapped.

I did select these two cities for a reason-- there were people I knew at these cities and I was staying with them, which saved me quite a few dimes-- although I did spend the majority of the time touring around on my own.

I have to admit to the fact that, well, the whole concept of going for that trip was a highly anxiety probing one because of the reality of my physical limits.

What makes it even more difficult was the fact that... oops... I was on a low budget...

Should I be rich, I could have gotten a whole bunch of obstacles out of the way easily... taxiing here, taxiing there, even hiring someone to carry everything everywhere...

Yet, in reality, I had no income, not much money and not even much physical strength and capacity.  One thing I did and still have is-- I've got guts. 8-O lol

So I bought the cheapest tickets I could find over the Internet and packed my luggage as lightweight as possible since people were not able to pick me up from the airports.

My brother-in-law did tell me to take the taxi from Pu-dong airport to his place but, a bad habit of mine, why wasting das geld away if such is what I might be able to handle.

I had packed it so light- (the luggage weighted about 3-5 kg for a 2-3 week trip) that I had to forgo the intent to bring the computer along.... 8-O lol

I did make it through the entire trip.... though got even more disabled and sicker at points en route.

Yet, I made it through that first trip after Ratology entered into the physical disability era... with one lesson learned: 

Since the only time I have to deal with the weight of the luggage is between the airport and the place I will be staying at.  Next round, I will spend that extra dime on the equivalent of super shuttle or taxi, which would take me directly to the door. (That's the lesson learned? 8-O lol)

Although there is nothing I can do about the mobility-related issues, I surely can do without the unnecessary worry concerning the weight of the luggage-- Sort of like... cheapskate from hell... even there is a limit in hell... ok? lol 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

West End Avenue, New York

I was so very proud of myself on July 4th because I walked down to 93rd street along West End Avenue and came back up to the Columbia University area along Broadway.

It was the first time I walked down West End Avenue for a while...

Comparing to the distance I took today, that trip was more or less a Mickey Mouse.  Yet, might not have been able to get back from 82nd without them Tour de Mouse all the other days.  8-O lol

Down by Riverside Park- and up

So I decided to take my daily walk by the Riverside Park today...

How I missed the Riverside Park!

My steps stopped or something stopped my steps when I was passing this tree at 106th Street.

So I thought-- why don't I sit down a bit to enjoy the still life.

It was around noon though it was fairly nice in the shade.

It was nice to be sitting there in the shade... eyes closed... shoes off... listening to the sounds in the surround and... simply relaxing...

At some point, I thought... the trees and the surrounding like me and they replenish me with their energy.

Just a though and it ain't matter too much whether there's anything true in it...

That was the beginning of my walk.

Thereafter, I walked all the way down to 82nd street, found that red-tail hawk en route, and, walked all the way back to 110th and Broadway-- by which time-- I was really too tired to move half a step more...

My body is tired and I hope my body didn't go over its own limit... (not my fault... my body's own judgment call... lol)

It might have taken me 4-5 hours to complete a former routine that would take about 2 hours...

Within the 4-5 hours...

Somebody made his or her first million dollar...

Somebody got promoted or got a raise.... 

Somebody got published for the first time...

Somebody gave birth to a baby...

Somebody came up with an idea with the Nobel prize potential...

Within the same time... (and more time dedicated for this time spent)... I walked-- from 111th down to 82nd street and back to 110th.... a distance I haven't been able to entertain for a while.

Red-tail hawk by Riverside Park

Decided to take the route by the Riverside Park today for my walk...

En route, I came across this red tail hawk... the upside of being a slow walker for, otherwise, I might have simply passing it by without noticing it.

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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Renai Road

One of my biggest accomplishment at the beginning of May, 2011... I successfully crossed Renai Road at the intersection between Renai and Fuxing South Road.

I did have to sit down to let my body have rest a bit in preparation for the crossing as if I were preparing to run a 5k marathon.

Yet, I made it... this crossing... with a few brief stops en route.... within the time limit allowed for by a traffic light... something like 89 seconds or a bit more.

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Mr. Possibly Horace Mann

For years, every time I walked by this gentleman, I would greet him or bid him chow chow.

Walked by him by again yesterday and decided to take a picture of him for the first time...

Then, it occurred to me... what's the name of what's his face here... no disrespect intended...

When trying to check the name plate out, I found that it has been torn off...

Asking people around... people weren't quite sure either....

A professor of mine once mentioned to me how the statue of Horace Mann was moved to Mann Hall... or now Zankel Hall at Teachers College.

Don't recall whether this is the one that my professor was telling me about...

For the time being, I might call the gentleman, "Mr. Possibly Horace Mann."

Will get back to you on the real identify of Mr. Possibly Horace Mann... unless you know... please inform.

9/1/2011 Update: Based on some old writing I generated years back, I am almost 99% sure this gentleman is Horace Mann.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Want a ride?

One nice thing about roaming around at large is that you get to see things otherwise would not have come into your existence.

For instance, on my way to the office to help my friend with a broken foot getting some stuffs done yesterday afternoon, I saw this nice car parking right by the corner of 120th Street and Broadway.

When I stopped to take a picture or two while giving my compliments to the nice car, this gentleman emerged and asked... "Want a ride?"

"Your car?  Nice car!" So I complimented.

It was not until after I walked a few more steps away did I come to the realization... Man... should have said yes!

Looking back, I didn't see anyone by the car anymore...

So they say... opportunities knock once... lol

Towards 82nd street and Broadway

It is an historical accomplishment for Ratology 2011... a benchmark...

I walked my body or my body walked me all the way down Broadway from 111th street to 82nd street yesterday.

Although it is a route I have traversed a million and a time, it is the first time in 2011.

I did have to stop to rest and the body was getting really tired before I hit the 82nd street... with each picture included in this slide one of the "tiring point." lol

Yet, I did it and saw the world on Upperwest on my two feet.

The ending point... 82nd street and Broadway.

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Lazy Beauty 美麗

美麗 or Beauty has to be one of the luckiest dog on this planet.  She was originally a stray dog and got adopted by my uncle/cousin's family.

She is well-fed by everyone and gets to roam around in the field.

She is such a queen that she would be lying in the middle of the road (our front yard) and all the cars have to go around her rather than her moving herself away from the road.

If, unfortunately, reincarnation is inevitable, it would be nice to reincarnate into a happy and lucky dog like 美麗.

One of the reason why 美麗  is not on leash is because...  her body is too big and her head not big enough.  As a result, when my cousin tried to put her on a leash, the collar fell off because Beauty's neck is as big if not bigger than her head.  8-O lol

The white building you see here is the House of 美麗 (Beauty). 

At the intersection of Zhongxiao and Dunhua

This is a picture I took at the intersection of Zhongxiao East Road (忠孝東路) and Dunhua South Road (敦化南路) during my daily walk on Jan. 5th, 2011....

The day before I got a "potential job offer."

2 days before that chiropractor's manipulation pushed me back into a state of total disability.

This is one of the most popular shopping and entertaining area.  A must-go for visitors and local people as well.

Really bad traffic as well especially during the rush hour.... 8-X

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杭州灣跨海大橋 (Hangzhou Bay Bridge)

My brother-in-law drove me over the Hangzhou Bay Bridge during my first trip to China last summer...

As a matter of fact, all that I did through out the entire day was sitting in the car while my brother-in-law drove us within a day from Shanghai through the Hangzhou Bay Bridge, enroute Nimbou, Hangzhoud and back to Shanghai.  Also visited some other towns en route.

For sure, I didn't do it alone... and who say that I have to see the world alone just because I am some kind of a handicapped?  Think I am crazy?! Duh.... 8-O lol

Following is what I posted in Ratology Reloaded about this Bridge.

Aug. 29, 2010

Ratology Reloaded: 杭州灣跨海大橋 (Hangzhou Bay Bridge)

I took a trip over the 杭州灣跨海大橋 (Hangzhou Bay Bridge)....

This bridge is 35.673 M or around 22.167 miles in length... It is now the longest trans-oceanic bridge and the second longest bridge in the world (with the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway in the United States still ranking number 1).

I found many pictures online... on fair-weather days... Unfortunately, it was as foggy as possible... the day I took my trip.

So what does it feel like to cross the longest trans-oceanic bridge in the world on a foggy day?

Experience for yourself.... 35.673 KM at the average speed of, say, around 110 KM/HR... a trip of about 20 something minutes, perhaps...

The S-shape bridge...  

One thing I found most interesting about the trip is that... at points, the bridge was so closed to the water that I can't stop worried about... what if... in the season of Typhoons?

盆菜 at 博多新記

My sister and brother-in-law took us out for a dinner ordering only 1 dish plus soup... during the Chinese lunar new year.

Gotta be really bad economy... One dish only?  Except for... not your ordinary dish... a dish that fed multiple families many more days afterwards... lol

Feb. 5th, 2011

Monday, June 27, 2011

St. John the unfinished (the Divine)

It is not like I am too much of a religious kind of person.

However, as I was trying to climb out of my personal version of infernal since January this year, St. John the Divine kept on coming into my mind.... although all that I did was sitting there resting with my eyes closed most of the times.

Why St. John the Divine?  Close to home and open to public 24/7 most of time. (OK, actually, from 7 AM to 6 PM)

And, I somehow made it back to St. John the Divine.... to simply sit there, with my eyes closed, most of the times.... one Monday afternoon...

June 7, 2011

田子坊(Tian Zi Fang)

I thought that my body was in a pretty bad shape when I went to 田子坊(Tian Zi Fang) for the first time in a steamy hot evening on Aug. 30, 2010.

Only to realize that my body was in a much better shape during my first visit when I revisited 田子坊(Tian Zi Fang) the second time in the winter cold on Feb. 7, 2011.

Things surely are relative in life... 8-O lol

Regardless, I made it to 田子坊(Tian Zi Fang).

Sunday, June 26, 2011

How I got back to Taiwan from JFK last summer

There were twice in previous years when I needed wheelchair services because I either fractured or sprang my ankle in Taiwan before returning to the US.  At that point, disability services were simply some random thing I had to call for...  It was novelty... wow... they wheeled me all the way...

Then, there came these years of being incapable for carrying even 2-3 Kg for short distances and even slower than ordinary people's speed at walk... even in the top shape.  The thing is, if I don't call for the wheelchair services, by the time I get to the gate, the connection flights I have to catch might have already arrived at the destination.... 8-O lol

Since 2007, I have had to use the disability services to travel by air.

Most of the times, you go to the website of the airline companies and you click on something to request the service.  If the design of the website is usable and if the internet connection is good between your end and the server, the process might take less than a minute to complete.

All that has to be done thereafter is to get me to the check-in counter and someone will come with a wheelchair to pick me up.

Before I got back from the US last summer, I got my body in really bad shape again because I was trying to clean things up in my place.  The trip to the airport didn't help either.  By the time I got to JFK, I was  immobilized by the pain... and couldn't even get off the van.

As a result, I first managed to slide my butts from the chair to the floor, slide one step down at a time, and, somehow got my body up to standing position... at the curbside.  The nice driver of Supershuttle either placed the luggage next to me or placed me next to the luggage... or... simple put we all luggage together... can't quite recall.

It was sort of surreal to stand there with two pieces of luggage all along by the curbside at around 5-6 AM while I was overcome by pain and could barely move my body or speak...

Then, there were these two gentlemen working for the airline who were stationed outside...

I tried to call for them but I could hardly talk because of the pain... although I was still able to keep myself in standing position.

I tried to wave at them but I could hardly lift my arm...

Eventually, I got their attention and someone came with a wheelchair, took me and my baggage to the check-in counter of United Airlines...

The lady asked me for my documentations but I didn't have much capacity left to process anything other than pain.

Worst of all, I didn't have any pain killer with me because I had managed to not use pain killers much for almost two years by then.

Conversation between the two of us at the check-in counter might have been...

"Anyone else traveling with you?"


"Where are you traveling to?"

"Back... to.... Taiwan."

"Can I have your passport?"

Too in pain to search for anything in my purse, the gentleman who was wheeling me passed my purse to the lady to let her fish my documents out while, me, trying to calm the roaring pain down... 

She found my password, got me checked in, and, checked my luggage in.  That gentleman wheeled me along my carry on luggage all the way to the security check point where someone else came to take over.

Since cheap tickets always requires more than 1 leg, so at each of the airport, someone would come to pick me up with the wheelchair, drop me at the gate where the connection flight will take off, and, pick me up at the boarding time from the waiting area to get me to the entrance of the flight.

Through out the entire trip, all that I did was popping more and more of the non-aspirin the flight attendants gave me while trying to relax the muscles from neck down with the nice hot bottle prepared by the flight attendants--  one leg at a time. 

So it is-- how I got back to Taiwan from JFK last summer.

Come to think about it today, it is actually pretty comical... although something I can really do without.... 8-O lol 

My wish list

I am a simple girl with a simple life.

Some things I would love to have- to go on the world tour of my dream- my low-budget backpacking style:

512 GB USB drive might not be in existence yet. Therefore, 256 GB will do.

Forget about 512 GB SD memory card for my camera.  Not even sure whether 256 GB exists yet.  Therefore, a 128 GB will do if only this one could work on my not-so-young Canon.

Why do I want these two so bad?

When you are like me having problems carrying weight , you have to travel light and lighter... (though... if you are rich--- well, you can simply hire someone to do the carrying, I guess.... 8-O lol)

With them, all that I need to bring with me to the long trips of my dream is my camera, the charger for the batteries for the camera and the access to some equipment that would allow me to download data from the memory card... a few things to wear and my meds and pill cutter, too... 8-O lol

If you ask me why not simply a portable drive, which might give you more storage space at a far cheaper price?

Well, the difference is in the weight... for people like me, each every ounce counts because they all add up...


I love traveling.

Came across the pictures and clips I took in my earlier years the other day and thought to myself...

"When will I be able to run up and down the world again?"

Might be or might not be though I am not going to sit around waiting for the terminal verdict.

All else I know not...

I do have an additional lens today to see and experience the world: the lens of a handicapped-- visible sometimes and invisible at times.... shared by some and unknown to many.

This is the beginning of a new pursuit-- a handicapped at large: Tripping in Ratology (hit the road Jack... no more no more fall).  8-O lol