Monthly Roundup for August, 2019

August literally started off with a bang. I was shaken rudely from sleep in the early morning by an earthquake that sent my clock bouncing off the wall, and my books helter-skelter. I opened the door to my bathroom to find that the strength of the earthquake had actually tipped over my de-humidifier, and there was water all over the floor. The earthquake was followed by a typhoon, and a few days of unstable weather.

Poor Taiwan! (Original image source: Central Weather Bureau)

The severe weather conditions gave me some extra time to spend at home, and I spent the time pottering around and doing some de-cluttering. The latest items to make it to the bin is some of the old notebooks that I’ve had stored in these boxes my Hobonichi planners come in every year. As you can see, I’ve built up quite a collection, and these boxes have followed me from apartment to apartment.

I may have mentioned this before, that a friend of mine eliminated 9-10 huge boxes of personal memorabilia and only kept 3 meaningful photographs. She says she feels that her mind feels more clear now that her living space is no longer weighed down with excessive clutter. That’s exactly the feeling that I am after, so I emptied out all the boxes, and laid out all the notebooks and decided to throw away several of them. The ones I currently can’t seem to part with are the planners, but maybe that feeling will change soon.

I was also forced to do a digital declutter on both work and home computers- seems like I’m under an gloomy technology cloud. I had my own Carrie Bradshaw moment, when my laptop screen turned black and died. Luckily for me, most of my files were stored on the Cloud, and the Apple store engineers were able to restore my laptop. My work computer for some reason also decided to go on strike (time for a holiday, maybe?). The office IT guy restored my operating system in Chinese. Gulp. As much as I would like to brag that my Chinese has improved in the past 10 years or so, my abilities have definitely not improved to the point where I can read computer instructions. Thankfully, there are plenty of YouTube videos, which helped me change everything back. It was a humbling experience, but I’m happy to report that I figured it out ALL BY MYSELF. (No help from the IT guy who said “just reinstall everything.”) Interestingly enough, my computer ran faster and smoother after the whole processl (metaphor for life, maybe?) Anyway, after that ordeal, I turned off the computer and will be out of office all week.

Lastly, August is a special month because it marks the anniversary of Ciao Desserts. I can’t believe that it’s already been six years!  This has been one of the quietest years since then, because I am trying to decide on new directions for the blog.  Ciao Desserts originally began as a way for me to document my dessert and baking adventures. Lately, due to differences in work commitments and life priorities, there has been decidedly less time for baking and for finding new dessert places. However, I’m pleased to report that new interests are in the works- I’ve rediscovered my love for organizing, and I’ve started my quest for living a more streamlined lifestyle.  I’m also thinking about developing a series about small space living. Space is precious in Taipei, and since moving back almost 10 years ago (!!) now, I’ve adopted some strategies for urban life and living in small spaces that I would love to share with you. What other parts about life in Taipei would you be curious about? Please let me know in the comments section!



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