I love this t-shirt.

On the 29th April , Moscow was washed clean by a thunderstorm. The air was delightful; it mellowed the heart and made one want to start living again.

Mikhail Bulgakov, ‘Black Snow’.

I know we are already way past April, and I’m definitely nowhere near Moscow, surrounded with days that are wrapped in high heat and humidity over here. The air is also far from delightful….. but somehow I found these opening lines from Bulgakov’s Black Snow, to be quite apt for reviving this little space with a sort of ‘comeback post’.

The unplanned absence from this blog for the past three over months was largely due to a lack of inspiration for writing/ posting (among a host of other factors), but fortunately, not from reading. In fact, I have been feeling more ‘alive’ and voracious in my appetite for books and reading in the last two months, than what I could remember having felt, in years. And it feels great.

I find myself pulling out books from forgotten stacks and shelves every other couple of days or so, and wanting to read everything at the same time, or something different every time. This haphazard kind of a reading may probably seem absurd and even frowned upon by serious readers out here, but all I can say is that, I found much comfort and pleasure in doing so.

As for the hodgepodge of stuff I have been reading, I’ll probably save it for another post.
For now, I thought I’d just share some long overdue snapshots of some highlights (bookish ones, that is) taken from my trip to Taipei early last year.

First off…. The Moomin CafΓ©.

My dinner. (That’s probably the cutest piece of carrot I ever ate!) πŸ˜€
And that’s my Hattifattener rice with olive eyes. πŸ™‚ Shame though, that one of them fell onto the floor shortly after the photo was taken. :p
Check out the cutleries.
And the delightful artworks lining the walls leading to the washroom.

One doesn’t need to worry about dining alone here…. there are some friendly (& not-so friendly :p) companions to be had, if one fancies.

Next up….. ‘the most beautiful secondhand bookshop I’ve ever seen’.

The cosy Mollie Used Books is truly a haven for book lovers to escape from the bustling city.
Having a kitty to stand as sentry at the shop front just makes it all the more purr-fect!! πŸ˜‰

Besides busily snapping away with my handphone, I did also manage to come away with a Tatyana Tolstaya hardback. πŸ™‚
Loved the place so much, had to come back for another visit during the daytime as well.
Kitty guard wasn’t looking as sprightly this time, but that’s probably because it had just gotten off the night shift, I guess. :p
Back to work again…… (this is definitely one ‘meow-del’ employee, I’m telling ya!) πŸ˜€
“Hey, will you please keep it down? There are people trying to read here!” (kitty on the job)

A few other beautiful bookish nooks around the city…..

This lovely little book shop is located at the grounds of the Songshan Cultural and Creative Park in central Taipei.

This was definitely one Dickens I’d never come across before, have you? And you thought you’ve seen them all. πŸ™‚
I just love the design of this building and the cool, soothing colours of the exterior facade. So therapeutic.
This is one of the few Japanese chain bookstores that can be found in some of the popular malls around the city.

This one was taken inside the Eslite bookstore (Dunnan branch) during the wee hours of the morning. Yes, it’s a 24 hour bookstore, and makes for a great hang out spot for nocturnal readers. πŸ™‚

Whose Books – another great little nook for used books, located in the Zhongzheng district..
You might find gems like this at the top of those inviting stairs. πŸ˜‰

“Let us now praise pretty book covers….”

This was the one that really made me wish I could read Chinese.

This one did actually come home with me, though. πŸ™‚

6 thoughts on “Of books and bookshop hopping…. and oh, some Moomins too!

  1. Welcome back. So glad to know you haven’t completely gone off grid. Your trip looks amazing – 24 hour bookshop??? Does it have a big ganger alert sign outside – it could do serious damage to your bank balance

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, for the heartening comment. πŸ™‚ It was an amazing trip, both the bookish and non-bookish parts as well. The 24 hour bookshop does help to fulfil the bibliophile’s fantasy of being locked in a bookshop overnight and having a free run of the place all to yourself. πŸ˜€


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