There is a place in Taipei that glistens with promise and the hope for a better personal future.
Not really. That's just what one of the fortune tellers will tell you. In truth, the underground market near Longshan Temple and subway stop in Taipei, Taiwan is just...odd.
Two stories underground, market visitors are greeted with the biggest draw during the summer months, cool air. Because it is such a large free, cool public space, it has attracted hordes of Taipei's elderly. They mill about, sit and chat, sell artwork, and karaoke to old tunes.
This is where Taipei's older apparently go to finish out their days of retirement. It is hard to tell if they're enjoying themselves behind the plastic screens of the individual karaoke parlors, or if only a few enjoy the actual act of singing while the rest tolerate it so they can escape the summer heat (Taipei gets into the 100's).
Taipei is known for it's markets, especially night food markets, and stumbling upon what can only be described as Taipei's "Retirement Karaoke Market" makes for a pleasant surprise and subsequent look at some of Taipei's culture that otherwise might be missed during a short trip.
MRT To Longshan Temple Station and follow the signs.
This old guy was really working it. After a grueling session of karaoke, get a quick, brutal massage.
Unwanted facial hair or skin? Not to worry! String facial scrapes are available.
Original artwork produced by senior citizens is for sale.
Old stuff. Get old...stuff. Posters, pottery, and more...stuff.
Inside each booth a soothsayer ready to tell you about future indiscretions and love.
Lining the halls are side shops covered in see-through plastic where you can sing your heart out to old school Taiwanese tunes.