There are always little nooks and crannies around Taipei that you will come across if you veer off event the tiniest of bit. For me, that veering off has been happening everyday for over a year and I didn’t even notice the little wonder on my daily morning walk on my commute to work.
I live near Nangang Park and to get work, I walk to Kunyang MRT station. There are two ways to walk there, one is down Dongxin Street, and the other is an alleyway with a military complex on one side, and old loading bays turned into housing on the other side in one of the lanes on Kunyang street.
Kunyang street is the quickest route to the MRT station, though you do miss all the 7-Elevans and morning breakfast shops. I think it is worth it considering the quiet walk through this nice area.
Despite walking through the area for over a year, I never noticed that down the steps to get to Kunyang street from Donxin street, there is something really odd.
The stairs are next to temporary housing that is probably owned by locals who earn their living by collecting waste. They are really nice people and I suspect that they have been decorating the staircase next to their home.
I could be wrong about that but I hope I am not because the little wonders on this stairway are so weird and cool that I would hate to not know who is doing it.
Before you meet the stairway, you are first greeted by what I can only guess is an old abandoned military building, although it is next to the old house owned the sanitarium owner and that article written by Foreigners in Taiwan is a great read.
Once you hit the corner of this little alley you come across this.
Stairway to Tetanus
At first glance it looks like a mess and rightly so, it is where people organize the recyclable rubbish from the ordinary stuff and sometimes they forget about a bit.
You could forgive me for not even giving this spot a second glance. It looks derelict and has seen better days. But, I took some time and found some really weird stuff
Whoever lives near this staircase has been putting old toys, mirrors and tiles, and added them together to form a wall for the stairway.
The baby toy head kind of freaked me out at night the first time I seen it. I had just come back from the mountains in Heping District and I was frightening my partner about stories of the little red girl on the mountain. I guess she got her own back when I had a mini-heart attack when I seen this after having a few drinks.
This little guy is one of many little figurines lying around too.
They are using old pipes and other rubbish to put their plants in. Hopefully when spring comes I can grab some photos of this place in its true beauty.
So there you go, if you keep an eye out in Taipei you can come across some weird little places that you would never have seen if you didn’t open your eyes a little.
Sure, a lot of this is just garbage, but it is a beautiful mess of garbage that adds some character to Taipei because this city’s architecture is not old or new enough to have its own distinctness.
It might not be Taipei 101, or some neon covered building in Ximen, but it is more interesting to me.