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  • Writer's pictureTim and Lindsey

Mike and the Mosquitoes

Days 929 – 930

After 3.5 hours journey, we arrived back in Hengchun. For those of you who regularly read our blog you may remember that we stayed here at the beginning of April, so why have we returned? Mainly to see Mike. And the Mosquitoes? – no, thank you!

When we were here in Hengchun 8 weeks ago, we met Mike from the USA. He has come over to Taiwan to join his girlfriend Audrey, who works here from the Philippines, and we have kept in touch. We also met Cathy, Zeff and their lovely young family and wanted to reconnect. So here we are.

Apart from travelling and eating at a lovely local vegetarian restaurant, we didn’t do too much on Saturday. The quotes in the little diner, together with a conversation I had with Donny in Kaohsiung about the book “One Word that will change your life”, inspired us to ponder on what our one word is for the rest of the year. As it says in the book: “people do not remember paragraphs or even sentences. Such complexity leads to procrastination and even paralysis. One Word is sticky and memorable.” And our words? Curious and Flow. Whose is who, do you think?

On Sunday, we called up Mike and met him for a coffee. We were chatting so much that it was then lunchtime and found another vegetarian restaurant just around the corner from where Mike now lives.

The owners at the restaurant greeted us warmly. They must have seen our confused faces as we looked at the menu, so unbeknown to us, called a friend who could speak English. As they handed me the phone, I thought I was talking to a Translation App and was surprised when a young lady started conversing with me. We all had a good laugh.

The table we sat at had a glass display cabinet with lots of beautiful rocks and shells. The owner must have seen us admire them as he then gave us all some stones to keep, then offered us tea. He seemed thrilled when we asked to have our photo taken with him.

We walked down the side road with Mike to see the new place he has rented with Audrey. Wow, you would think he was in the middle of the countryside, not at the edge of a bustling town. Mike has only been here for a week and has already planted pots of herbs and vegetables. It is basic, with one room and a bathroom, and he has created a lovely outdoor kitchen. What else do you need in life? Nothing.

Mike explained that he had been at a local bar in town and chatted to one of the staff. The Spanish owner has built a smokery in the courtyard garden, and this inspired Mike to make one for himself. He found a metal container and showed us how he was going to convert this and smoke pieces of meat and fish in it—sound fab.

We had been standing out in his yard for some time, and I kept feeling stings on my legs, arms and even fingers. I looked down and saw a mosquito having a nibble – Yeowch! We moved inside with the breeze of the a/c cooling us down and safety from those blasted insects.

We had listened to Mike’s stories for so long that I realised the Night Market would now be open. We wandered into town, down the narrow cobbled lanes past places we hadn't noticed before. We do see some weird things on our journey. We reached the market and immediately saw the man with his deer again, then joined the merry throng of people enjoying eating the delights of the local cuisine. Not so local for us; we had some delicious sushi before Mike took us to the bar he mentioned earlier.

While we were there, we got in touch with Cathy and Zeff and found out that they too were at the Night Market. Mike wanted to get back home for when Audrey returned from work, so we said goodbye and went to meet the young family. Cathy was busy organising an event with another guy, so I played with their adorable son Zion, while Tim chatted to Zeff and arranged to see them tomorrow. That’s all for today, folks!

#Hengchun #HengchunNightMarket #OneWordThatWillChangeYourLife #Mosquitoes

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