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“Waiter, there’s a turd on my table”

Hop onto the thrown at Modern Toilet Restaurant

Of all the things that brought a big smile to my face today, the Modern Toilet has to trump the list. It was never a wonder that the South East Asia culinary experience can be quite something, but this is something that the most valiant connoisseurs of the ‘weird’ would scrunch their nose at – atleast just for a second. The manga character, Dr. Slump on the toilet, inspired the ‘loo’ themed restaurant and it was only months before it became a rage with locals and tourists alike. It’s been just over a decade since it started and the excitement around the Taipei restaurant doesn’t seem to wane. A trip to Taipei without the welcome ‘squirt’ from a western commode or plastic yellow turd replicas and a ‘throne’ for a seat would not be complete. (www.moderntoilet.com.tw)

Changing of the guards ceremony at Chiang Kai Shek Memorial


While a quick peek into Modern Toilet came pretty late in the day, the morning didn’t leave that much time to think as we whizzed past the ‘Best of Taipei spots – the ‘junk’ boat in which the Chinese ancestors of the Taiwanese arrived through the Strait of Taiwan, the mesh of streets bearing Japanese Baroque styled architecture and some with a definitive dash of Chinese with ginseng sculptures, the guard changing ceremony at the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial and the reams of fabric at the Yongle market.
Xia Hai City of God Temple




Another grin worthy spot is the famous Xia-Hai City God Temple, tucked away in the Dihua Street of the old town, especially for those looking for love. Of the cluster of many Gods who resolve a number of issues for devotees to temple, one of them is specifically assigned for matchmaking and fidelity. The busiest building in the block, the temple has a steady stream of devotees armed with incense sticks, scrolls of holy paper to burn, fruit, chocolates and more for the Gods. Photography is allowed and no one seems to bat an eyelid with tourists knocking devout locals with elbows, lenses firmly pointed at the small shrines inside. Infact, a polite bow and sorry is what you get in return.

And if I were to point out the one place that got me excited to shop (I’m a terrible shopper), it would have to be Frog Café with their contemporary, wooden and minimalistic designs that spread over magnets, post cards, pen holders and even chopping boards. So while the lure of Ximending Market bargains may be hard to resist, save this one to pick something for someone special. The all brown store also has a café at the back. One can traverse the store and the café with a saunter through the kitchen.


Frog Cafe, Taipei
Speaking of brown, remember, Taipei maybe the only place where you may have to tip the waiter for a turd on your table!

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