Monthly Archives: June 2012

Mill Street genius developer (no age) responds to Oxford Mail

IT CAN be found just here….  But it is Mrs Miles, isn’t it? And how come the developer Nik Lyzba (age?) doesn’t have his age behind his name, while Brendan and yours truly do?

Government inspector turns down developer’s appeal on three storey building


A GOVERNMENT INSPECTOR has turned down an appeal to build a three storey building at the bottom of our gardens at Mill Street, Oxford. ♥

The Old Power Station is not a listed building. But it should be

JUST BY THE Thames Isis there is an enormous brick building which at one time supplied Olde Oxford Town with all of its energy.

It is the Old Power Station on Arthur Street, a place where after it stopped generating energy for the city, Concorde engines were tested.

We are appalled to learn this enormous building is not a listed building. Perhaps our local Labour councillors, Susanna Pressel and Colin Cook, could put this on their agenda.

Anyway, last night it was free booze for the residents of Mill Street, as the finalists of Ruskin entertained us with their wondrous creations. See below. ♥

Falun Gong maintains vigil outside Taiwan’s pineapple cake tower

Falun Gong, Taipei 101

NOW IT is much easier for people to fly from China to Taiwan and to Taiwan to China from the, er, domestic airport, a stream of visitors from the mainland come to Old Taipei to sample, we’re told, the excellent pineapple cake produced here and to buy expensive watches.

Where better to do that than in the stunningly expensive Taipei 101, full of high class brands that you and I cannot possibly forward.

So as the coaches unload the mainland visitors, there’s a small group of people, pictured here, who are Falun Gong devotees – the Falun Gong is proscribed on the mainland. In Oxford, most weekends, a small group of people hand out leaflets about the Falun Gong, they seem to be the most peaceful of people. Ah well…. Φ

Everything is fine, dandy, handy and even a little randy here at the Dandy in Daan

SO OFTEN you get to a hotel on a foreign shore – well I do anyway – and there is little to read apart from a Gideon’s Bible; it doesn’t often happen in Asia that there is a Gideon’s Bible – heck you don’t want to read the Song of Songs for the 300th time, do you? You would be far better off reading the Yogini Hridaya (Heart of the Yogini), trust me. I am a journalist.

Well you might like reading the Bible, but you read the Song of Songs and before you know where you are it’s Ecclesiastes and then the Apocalypse, Babalon and all that. No not Babylon, Babylon is in Kent. Or was Kent in Babylon?

We are very pleased to report that the only reading matter in our room in the Dandy – not the Beano, you understand Jings! – is a magazine called Body, which seems to be jam-packed full of adverts. It’s all in Chinese and it’s advocating healthy living – for example on page 31 of the current issue there is a very healthy looking young woman releasing what look to be pink balloons into the sky.

I always travel light, knowing that getting my laundry done locally is nearly always far cheaper than packing a big bag to the gills and lumping it from one hemisphere into the next and back.  So in the search for the laundry bag – which I found – I also made an inventory of what is in the same drawer. Some of you may remember the then famous Bangalore “Laundry Wars”.

To wit, here in Ole Taipei: Two pairs of throw away slippers clearly marked “CAUTION! DO NOT WEAR SLIPPERS INTO BATHROOM TO PREVENT FALLING”; one Dandy Hotel shoe mitt; one Dandy Hotel shoe horn to get in and out of those boots you might wear; one sewing kit; and a mysterious package labelled Safeway, no not the supermercado, and including the symbol for the planet Mars, which we have every reason to believe from touching and feeling it, but not using it, is clearly a condom.

Other useful things in the Randy DandyHaving a beano in the Dandy in Old Taipei include free bottled water, a real plant in the corner, free wi-fi that works very fast, charming and efficient hotel staff, pens that don’t work and piped music just outside my front door.  The rooms are really very nice, although a bit small but that hardly matters if you’re a little geezer like me. The frosted glass is inefficient so you can see what’s going on in the bathroom – but if you’re a dandy, a little bit randy, so what?

The breakfast is inventive, the water is piping hot and everything is handy and dandy for the Daan park and for Computex. With a 711 next door, and a Subway only feet away, what more could any visitor require? Pineapple cakes, or TAG Heuer OEMed Swatch watches?

Answers on a postcard to the Randy Dandy, por favor. And no, they’re not paying me for this. If only.

A History of British Tech

A History of British Tech.

We take the Daan dare

A STONE’S THROW from the Dandy Hotel in Daan is Daan Park. We took a stroll through the park to encounter almost mythical beasts…

Daan Park, Taipei
A bird

A terrapin

Black squirrel

I’m having a beano in the Dandy

EVERYTHING seems a bit odd in this hotel called the Dandy in the Da’an district of Old Taipei. I mean it’s fine….

Having a beano in the Dandy in Old Taipei