Wednesday, 23 December 2009


I walked home from Taipei 101. A long walk in the night. I had no money to take a taxi, the MRT wasn’t running anymore. The only solution left was to walk.
I had just seen Andy and we had been drinking in one of those fancy bars in the 101 Tower area. Andy…
I had not really talked to him since last May. He had been avoiding me whenever he’d bump into me. The situation saddened me; sometime it would anger me. But after all, I asked for it in a way. I was more concerned about myself instead of trying to understand the signals he was sending. The battle of ego. As hard as I may try to better myself, I still see all these paths I’m taking which lead to nowhere if to more self inflicted headaches and miseries.

I was invited to attend the performance of Song of Pensive Beholding – Chants de la Destinée, by the Legend Lin Dance Theatre, a company that enjoys quite some reputation in France. This was the third and final offering of a trilogy that Legend Lin had been working on for the past decade. It was visually beautiful. The show was more like a religious experience than a dance performance. Dance theatre, they like to call it. The dancers had to suffer extremely slow movements throughout the two hour long show, not unlike Japanese Noh, which had a powerfully lulling effect on me. The music didn’t help matters for it was long sequences of chanting with occasional gongs and percussion to round up the mystical effect. I have this feeling that I spite of the beauty of the piece, there was something slightly artificial and contradictory in its content.
The repetitive chanting, gong and drums did indeed induce the idea of a spiritual quest. Legend Lin’s idea was that the human story repeats itself incessantly, without end. Once the life cycle was completed, it would start again with a new generation and would repeat the same human errors and tragedy. Yet to me it also was a never-ending battle against her ego. However hard she would try to aim at naked simplicity, the way she staged her show and appeared on stage to take a bow in the end showed a goddess, not a woman.
But don’t all great artists have monster ego?

Andy was in the audience. I saw him at the end of the show. I expected him to run away and avoid me as he usually has done the past months, but he didn’t. To my greatest surprise, he even asked for my phone number. However happy I was to see him, I still expected for a blow or two. I congratulated him for winning the first prize at the flute competition. He had been hired by an orchestra in France. Things were looking good for him. 

We met for a drink tonight. He took me to BarCode, a trendy bar in the XinYi area. Cool crowd, cool music. We didn’t hit the sensitive topic, just told each others what was going on in our lives. A girlfriend of his joined us later. A very pretty girl named Amanda who's a jazz pianist. Her presence eased down the tension. 
Andy and I had both heard a lot about each other through common friends. It was very tentative first attempt to meet again. Yet it was a first step.
Whatever happens to in the future, at least we gave it a nice end. I don’t like to carry on with a burden of repressed anger and frustration. I felt relieved. No expectation, a faint hope.
And a long way to walk to home!

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