After meeting up with Julia and Ray at the station, we walked back to NOVA and the camera area. Julia bargained with a couple of the vendors and got Liz a good deal on a Fuji instant camera. Polaroid is dead, but Fuji is still making the instant film. Then, we stopped at a hair salon so Liz could get a haircut. The salon was pretty posh looking, but is in an area full of students and is dirt cheap. The haircut was about $8. We're told that the expensive haircuts ($100+) are in a different part of town.
Once Liz had her camera, we made our way up to Tienmou for the hot springs. We went to a restaurant on the side of the mountain
Julia and Ray thought it might be easiest if we went for the set menus. The food was certainly more interesting that way, but maybe not best.
First up were salads. They were having a vegetarian course as they were on a Buddhist vegetarian diet for 30 days before the wedding. The left salad was ours (with the shrimp) and the right theirs (with the fruit).
The second dish was a beef dish that I've forgotten the name of. It was decent if unspectacular.
Third course: Black chicken soup. The chicken looked weird but tasted like chicken. It was the odd broth and the medicinal herbs that tasted weird. This was our first of, I think, three black chicken soup experiences.
Fourth and fifth courses: winter melon soup and shrimp balls (complete with mayo and sprinkles). The soup was not great. We didn't finish it. Liz really liked the shrimp balls. I, not being a fan of the mayonnaise, appreciated them a bit less.
Last course was a funky chicken dish that was pretty good.
Following our meal was 40 minutes in the hot springs. The room we got was basically a big bathtub with controls to turn on the springs. The experience was oddly relaxing. It was a bit weird at first, but after a few minutes, we began to relax a bit. We cleaned up and caught a taxi back to the MRT. We stopped for bubble tea across the street from the station and drank it out front as there are no drinks allowed on the MRT. This was my first bubble tea experience and a positive one to boot. I didn't get the funky things in my tea this time, but I would on all subsequent tea trips.
Saturday, November 22, 2008