miyahara! i'd already stopped in for some ice cream but had to go back again before leaving taiwan. on the saturday before i left, claire and aileen met me there for some taiwanese snacks and iced milk teas in the cafe on the second floor. it's been a few weeks since i left, and looking at these photos made me want to go right back! i've said it before but miyahara should be one of your must-see spots on your visit to taichung. and there are actually two of them now, just minutes from each other on the same street, so there shouldn't be a problem getting in. (it does get very crowded on weekends!) try the taiwanese snack platter and one of their house tea concoctions...you'll be happy you did.
during this season of things, things and more things...a few of the ones making my day.
it's a whole lot colder in brooklyn than it is in taichung. i've been back for about a week now, and am wishing for those sunny 70-degree days, especially now that it's getting dark at 4:30 here. ugh. to comfort myself, i'm revisiting photos from my trip! here are some that i took at fantasy story, which i first checked out last year (although i didn't get around to posting about it until september).
i spent a bit longer there this time around - it was a weekday and things were slow, but there seemed to be more shops associated with the fantasy story brand. in fact, they were all strangely marked by strings of halloween pumpkin lanterns, which you can see in some of the photos. since my visit was in late november, i'm not sure if it was leftover from some halloween event, or a year-round thing the way christmas decorations tend to be. (i can still remember how my favorite restaurant in middle school had a "merry xmas" banner on its door in the middle of summer. tangentially, it's strange how so many american holidays have migrated to taiwan. my mom mentioned thanksgiving to me and i was like: "why do taiwanese celebrate the survival of pilgrims and squanto's good will?" these holidays were definitely not on any local's radar when i lived there in the 1990s....) but i digress. back to fantasy story: it's definitely very cute. but hey, i like this kind of thing.
the spaces are available for events and exhibits, and it looked like a crew was scoping out the space for a future event while i was there. there were also more restaurants than last time - a tea shop and a japanese restaurant on the second floor, as well as a large western restaurant called isabella.
it was so peaceful just wandering around and exploring alone. on the weekends though, it's probably packed with friends and family having tea and brunch and running around the courtyards.