November 2nd, 2006

Tinkerbell Interlude - just being with her

Tinkerbell Interlude - just being with her

photoset in

Folks, I am back in the Internet cafe with a big glass of ice lemon
tea next to me and making this entry an hour later after I came in.

That hour was spend in notifying various groups this started. I will not
do that again. So even though this entry is earlier, that left me one
hour less in that wonderful sauna to relax in.

This morning, the man in tuxedo came to shake me awake at 745am. He need
not do that. One arsehole had an incoming phonecall on his handphone and
that woke the rest of us up before he woked up to multiple curses at 715am.

Eventually, I reached Yu house at 845am, a mere 8 minutes away on my bike.

He had a rush order that day and I agreed with him that order must take priority
over the planned visit to Tsaoling. I had no trouble with that at all as that meant
I would have a happy day with Tink all to myself.

It was not the same as the good old days where Tink would fly to me when I hold the
harness in hand and stuck her neck into the loop. Unlike yesterday when after she
realised I was truly back and she did her best to be a limpet on me, she amused herself
at my expense by staying out of reach of me and that wonderful new harness. A good 5 minutes
were spend persuading her before she relented.

I tried to call Lin of Tsaoling but his phones were all off.

The weather was muggy and misty, not a good day to go up to the mountains. But it
mattered little. We set out on the bike with her carrier at my foot and her on her
perch and sunflower seeds in her Tinkerbell treat box. Breakfast was the first order of the day.

This was not just a trip to be with Tink. Ok, 99% was to be with her, but it would also be nice
to enjoy very traditional food here too. Such as the mee ger, some sticky rice with delicious
pork gravy in it. When I was in Saudi Arabia, I dreamed of pork when I was not dreaming of beer.
Since Tink loved that, the choice was natural we would have that for breakfast.

Got lost looking for that place which used to be on the back on my hand. I promised myself no more
short cuts until I reorientate myself once more. Eventually got unlost to be warmly greeted by
the proprietress of that shop. All of them knew I came back for Tink and for their food too.

We both ate our fill and headed off to the Langtang and Renyi Tang reservoirs. Because they are beautiful,
nearby, and not on mountains. Then I realised I needed to stock up on Tink essentials. Tissue paper that
I need not have to explain to those with parrots. Orange juice drinks with wide deep caps that
I will drink the juice and keep the caps for drink for Tink. Ciggies of course even if this make non smokers

I dropped by at my favourite fermented starfruit stall to have my usual quarrel with the proprietress
there. She made the most wonderful starfruit drinks and she always undercharged me. Her eyes opened
wide when she realised it was me and Tink. She refused money from me and I refused to take that free
complaining to her she was not a good businesswoman. We compromised at two for price of one.

Eventually, we reached our favourite place by lakeside of Langtang. Tink was placed on the side
railings and I unloaded the supplies and got comfortable. Light breeze was blowing making the tall
bamboos creaked so nicely. The book I brought with me by Bernard Cornwell was not touched. I did not
read that yesterday either on the train ride down. I spoke softly to Tink replying to me with
head bobbing before she decided preening herself was more marvelous than listening to me.

Note how loose and wide the new harness I made for her

Her line was played out so she could fly about as she wished.


Just lost 15 minutes of writing because I forgot to save and my 2 hours ended! A R G H !!!


I moved away a couple of meters thinking that would prompt her to lovingly fly to me. She did not
turn her head so perhaps she did not know I moved. I called her for her to turn her head to me
and moved a few more meters away. She nodded at me as if that was ok with her and went back to her
preening. So she decided being a limpet on me was below her dignity today unlike yesterday. After a
few attempts at calling her, I did what I told you all repeatedly not to do. I tugged her line.

She flew up, headed to me, hovered and promptly flew back to where she was at to continue her
preening. I took note and surrendered. I felt so guilty that she got undeserved beak rubs and some
sunflower seeds as expression of my guilt. She ignored those seeds.

After a while, she felt she was pretty enough not to need further preening and told me it was time.
By flying to my backpack to inflict further damage to it. So I set her up on the edge away from me
and did a short 5 meter recall. She came , rejected the seeds, and got her beak rubs. After a couple more
short flights, she felt that was enough. She poised almost as if she was about to take off when I called
her, then relaxed and went back to preening.

I learned to be obediant to her and let her preened. Watching her preening is hypnotic. Maybe like watching
rock breathing. So I fell asleep. Might have been that idiot who robbed me of 30 odd minutes of sleep this
morning when he let us woke him up with our curses. Might have been the emotional release from yesterday.

People must have come and gone during that time when I slept. Tink landing on me with her beak up my nose
got me up. She made her usual sounds and posturing she wanted water. So nice to be remembered for my servitude
to Her Grace. I opened an orange juice, drank some of it and used the cap for the bottled water with some
juice in the way she was accustomed to. She drank it nicely just to make me feel good at being given
the chance to be her lackey once more before she went back to preening.

In time, I knew we had to have lunch. I packed up under her watchful eyes. She must be peckish too. She
came to me on recall for the walk back to the bike with her on my shoulder.

Rode the bike down to a traditional fatty pork stall to order. Of course, I served her first with rice,
pieces of veges and a tiny bit of the fat from the pork. Her not eating of sunflower seeds compelled me
to make sure she got some fat for the oil. She immediately discarded her veges, threw out the white rice
and took only the rice with some gravy on it and the little bit of fat.

Fortified, we rode on to Renyi Tang reservoir by beautiful winding roads edged with trees and green.
A far cry from yellow and brown vast expands of sand , dust and deserts. Most of all, with Tinkerbell
in front of me on her perch. That day was still muggy and foggy. I wonder how I would write if
that day was bright clear and sunny. Maybe dead poets and writers would still turn in their graves.


We sat by the edge of the lake. BanTienYen was not visible. Neither was the mountain it was on.
That shot my theory about day being very clear the day after typhoon left. But then, we were
on the fringe of typhoon so another theory need to be conjured up. Tried to call Lin of Tsaoling
to receive nothing. So called up another friend , AT, in Taipei to talk. There was only so much you
could admire in a preening bird.

Light faded early and I decided to go to this beef noodle place which was a favourite of both of us.
In the last trip, you recalled that little ball of grey felt a nice portion was 1/4 of my plate. She might
had taken more, but I was hungry then.

There were two stalls near each other, both so good that me and my wife could not decide. So if the
first car parked after a junction had odd number ending, we went to the first stall, and the second on
even number ending.

I pulled up there to glazed looks from the people there unlike the warm welcomes before. I checked the name
was the same and the cooking arrangement was the same. I then had queer questions if Tink talked or not.
I even had to repeat my order twice. I had few chances for meals and I was determined to enjoy all that I could. The order came and I placed some of the noodles on the coffee can specially used to serve Tink.

She was an artist in eating noodles. She would take an end and kept drawing and drawing it in never dropping
it. She bit the noodle in half to let it drop on both sides of her beak. I kept taking that up to place
on her can. Than I started to eat the noodle. It was so ordinary, unlike the feast I was used to.

The soup was uninspired, the beef required hard chewing. No wonder we were the only entities there. What
a waste at the chance of a good dinner. I realised why Tink gave the noodle the ultimate insult of biting
it to let it drop on both sides of her beak.

We rode on to find the other beef noodle shop gone with a waste land all about. I recalled Yu telling
me yesterday that other noodle shop moved to a couple of lane back as that land was going to be
made into a park.

We got back to Yu house. He told me he forgot to tell me the second noodle shop changed ownership. He
need not tell me that for me and Tink to know.

They finally got internet connection into the PC we gave them. So I showed Yu for the first time the thousands
of photos I had in flckr and entire collection of Tinkerbell Revisited and how he could download that
into his own PC.

We tried to call Lin of Tsaoling again. To my nice surprise, I got him this time. He was delighted I
was back. But he was in Taipei, having just landed from Mainland China and would take time to be back
in Tsaoling.

He also told the very sad news that his wife passed on late last year. He was so happy that we visited
him and took photos of them. Those photos were the only photos he had of his wife. She was so well
and looking so good. We both were shocked.

I knew I had even more photos of both the Lins that I had not posted on the Internet. My wife would
have even more photos of Mrs Lin. I made a mental note to have those photos printed for this truly
great man that I had the chance to meet. Without him, the world would not have seen Yingshiong as I
never would have dared to think about trying that with a shama.

Its close to midnight now.

I like to go early to sauna and relax.

Goodnight folks



If what I wrote help you and you like to help, give a thought
for the wildlife sharing our planet.

Do write that cheque to Gerald Durrell wildlife trust

or to WWF or other conservation bodies of your choice

If you liked the photos of Tinkerbell and Taiwan, most of those photos were taken by Joy with my camera.

For even more photos of Tinkerbell and Taiwan, you should check out Joy's other folders in

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