I woke up. Opened my eyes, and realized that my trip to R16 Taiwan has finally ended. A bit of sorrow, but I know it’s all for the best! Knowing that all is over, I have to save my last day here for my family. Unfortunately.. I wasn’t able to visit my grandpa who was one of the biggest reason why I’m here in Taiwan this trip due to my sickness, but I will save up and see him very shortly. I got ready and went out with my parents and my sister since my mom and my sister arrived the day before.
We went to the Honda Dealer to buy some new things for my SnowFlake, and then went to get my new glasses and contacts. Afterwards we spent the rest of the day at my grandma’s house. I’m sure going to miss this place. Packed everything and ready to go leaving the place where I grew up was a bit hard, but it’s something I have to do.
On the way to airport I was really tired. Spent the last hour with my parents walking around the airport and picking up BBoy Pants from A-Ga of Underworld / Double K. He even gave me a free towel! He’s honestly one my best dude in Taiwan!
The flight back was cool, there was an angry vietnamese grandma sitting next to me the whole time. I have flight attendants giving me special VIP services since my mom used to be one for China Airline and her sister is still in it. They gave me free bottle of red wine, nice slippers, extra food, extra Taiwanese oo long tea, and some Italian brand utilities!! I stayed up the whole flight watching movies and reflecting on my trip… It was truly an amazing 12 days I had. I watched Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Couple’s Retreat, and Mission Impossible 4. The food, delicious, and next thing I know? I’m back to reality…
End of my R16 Taiwan trip of 2012.
(Thanks for reading)
I woke up at 12 because Thias have a workshop at TBC needs me to translate. But before that, I went to pick up Fabio and Greta because it’s their first time in Taiwan and needed help to get around. So I left and met up with em and took them to TBC studio to check it out.
Through his workshop, it was very interesting. A different approach, making everyone around him comfortable instead of intimidated. Almost 2 hours workshop and we wrapped it up with cyphers and what not. When the class was over, Thias and Choco left to the R16 area because judges need to talk before they use Dyzee’s system. I took Fabio and Greta to this Asian place where they can get all veggie noodles and they loved it. There we talked about so much things… Anyways, afterwards I took them to Xi Men Ding.
They were shocked how many people were there. It’s one of the most popular shopping district in Taiwan. Afterwards we split up. They went back to their hotel I had to go home and pack for R16 and stay at my bro’s place because I gotta pick up Fabio and Greta at 6Am. I got home, handled some business. So tired, and left the house. Met up with them again around 10 and head to a nearby popular night market called Rao Shu night market.
The beginning of the night market there’s a super famous stinky tofu place that was there for years. Since both Fabio and Greta was vegetarians, I told them they have to try it. They were really scared at first, but when Greta took the first bite, she loved it!
Took Fabio awhile to take his first bite, and after that? it was on! Stinky tofu is one of my favorite food, but I can only find good ones in Taiwan. That night, we had stinky tofu twice, it was funny! Second time it was so spicy that I cried for the first time… well… tear up. But anyways, I showed them around the night market they said they never seen nothing like it before. We left around 12:30, and got back to Luxy lobby and split with them so I can go to my brother’s place which is right down the streets and pick them back up at 6:00AM for R16..
I woke up, and chilled at my place so I can meet up with Choco to practice at TBC. Took me awhile to get there because of all the people at the MRT stations. Finally arrived at the studio, I practiced for a few hours then head towards Luxy area where Choco was meeting up with his girlfriend Queenie. After we met up with her we head upstairs to 13 floors above Luxy to say what’s up to My new friends from Italy: Fabio and Greta. They’re from Italy, and Fabio is founder of FLUIDO CLOTHING. Remember Skill Methodz vs. All Areas crew? Yup! Thats his jam! We went out to grab food for them because they’re vegetarians. Afterwards we dropped it off for them and head towards the tattoo shop where Thias is getting his tattoo. When we got there, he was already faded.
Too funny. I left the shop with Choco and Queenie so I can drop off my things at Choco’s so afterwards we can go to Luxy. It is Party Rock Friday, and they’re hosting a shuffling contest… Which I got it confused with Wednesday..
So I was interested. After waitin for Choco to finish working, we went to pick up Thias to Luxy. The night was just grooving and VIP’s. When the shuffling contest was up, it was 1v1 me against this dude. Whoever wins gets to meet LMFAO. So you know… I gotta bug out. On the big stage of Luxy, I was up first because the Party Rock Anthem was on… Too hype. And all of a sudden, Thias hopped on the stage and the DJ cut the music. But someone else jumped on the stage to back the other dude up, so it turned out to be a 2v2. When the song was over.. It was up to the crowd to decide who wins. The dudes we were battling was taking off their shirts and shit, so the ladies was screaming for them more. (oh well) we hopped off the stage and continue cypher the night away. After we left Luxy, all hell breaks through, but I won’t go in detail. All I can say is that I walked in the rain from 3am to 7:30am and got back to Choco’s around 8:15 almost had to sleep outside. That Was the beginning of my sickness…
I woke up three times at Choco’s place. My nose was running like crazy and couldn’t even sleep right. So I left the room and saw three cats running around (my heart almost melted..) so I sat down on the Remix chair, the black one hopped on my lap.. I was like oh my god this is heaven. He hopped off, and the other cat hopped back on… T_T Anyways, after trying to sleep many times finally we all woke up around noon, I showered and got ready because we were suppose to do this REMIX shoot for R16 gears. We went to the parking garage and Choco’s brother started shooting us… with his camera.
After the shoot was done I had to dip out because I was suppose to meet up with my dad at the hospital for my gramps. Finally arrived, I ran all over the hospital still couldn’t find my grandpa and it was last five minute before ICU closes their visiting hours I found it and left shortly after. I also had trouble finding my way out of the hospital which sucks big donkey ass. But surprisingly I found Kevin and my dad at the bus stop so we took the bus for some Dante’s Coffee. Ordered my usual, Caramel Macchiato upside down with extra caramel but the dude just gave me a normal one… Stupid..
Then we left home to kick it for a bit to get ready for the movies at Miramar. When we arrived at the theater, man I sure miss this place… One of the most beautiful mall / theater I’ve ever been to. I will let the pictures do the talking. (iPhone 4 for the win)
Today I woke up at my grandma’s place and had some breakfast, then my uncle and auntie met up with us to take us out for some more food. We first stopped by my place to pick up my things so I can get ready for practice later, so we swooped up my dad also and walk towards the food place. It was like few thousand NT all you can eat for one table so the food was legit. Sucks I didn’t take any pictures, but I remember all I had was rice and one dish.. it was amazing. Afterward we were suppose to watch Hunger Game but we canceled it instead since I gotta hit up TBC studio to practice. My dad and I head back home, rest up a bit and we both left to do our own thing. On the MRT, it was crowded.. This Asian girl came in sat in front of me since there are seating on each side of the train. I was wearing my Ray Bans on the train just chilling… and she sat down started doing all her girl things like fixing her hair, checking her nails and what not. Took off her sunglasses, checked her phone and organized everything. And then, she used her cellphone camera as mirror and then.. the demon unleashed it’s power.. She began raising her phone above her head and started taking hella Asian ass pictures and I’m looking at her like are you serious? You’re in a train, filled with people… NO SHAME AT ALL. THUG LIFE.. She’s doing all the peace signs, peace sign backwards, the baby lips, the big eyes, and as she’s ready for the picture she constantly fixing her hair and what not I literally almost got up and walked to the other side of the train.
BUT ANYWAYS… Enough about the demon.
I got off the train and head towards my final transfer station, Taipei Train Station which is the biggest station in Taiwan. All of a sudden I heard “JOEY!!!” At first I was like who the fuck calls Joey or speaks English in public like that… but I remember that voice.. turned around it was Choco and Thias! HAHA! What a small ass world honestly, but then you know, saying our whats up and what not started walking towards the TBC studio.
We got there, Choco and Thias ended up chilling, while I hit the practice. After awhile Thias joined. While I was all sweaty and nasty after everything, I found out that there was actually a SHOWER in the studio!!! So I let Thias get his shower on first so I can record around the studio to show everyone later. Choco had to handle his business things, so me and Thias waited near the lobby to watch this New Jack Swing class. After a long ass wait, Choco finally finished his business talk, and together with KongRoc we head towards Xi Men Ding… IN SCOOTERS! I don’t have the best experience on scooters, but this time was legit! Recorded the whole way there, so you guys will see the video when I’m back to the states.
We got there walked around and had this awesome dinner and head to Remix clothing so Thias can get some free gears. After awhile we went to Choco’s house until he wraps up his work before we head to Luxy. Choco have FIVE CATS!!!!!! It’s like my HEAVENN!!
And all of them are people friendly.. But after an hour of playing with them.. I couldn’t breath and kept sneezing.. My allergy was off the chart.
We got free entrance to one of the finest club in Taipei, and it was LEGIT!
I wish I can bring my friends here one day, if they’re committed to save up and go.. But anyways, the whole night we were in our own world, bugging out to the point that Thias got pushed and if he ain’t a bboy he could’ve died. He also got in a argument with the securities… But shit, electro and shuffling.. y’all already know! Someone also wanted to shuffle battle me who later on ended up in the ER because I killed him. (heh) We left the venue around 3, and had dinner at this place where Thias claimed he’s gonna pay for but I ended up treating everyone out.
Got back to Choco’s place me and Thias started freestyling. The night was super long, and finally hopped in bed. Interesting day.
I woke up around 8 am today because my dad arrived to Taiwan, after kicking it for a minute I went back to bed. Woke up around 12 and got picked up by my dad’s friend to see my grandpa at the hospital. Looks like he’s doing a lot better but the doctor still said he’s in danger zone. We left the hospital later on for some Starbucks but got sucked in by the evil forces of Taiwan’s convenience store. We all bought ice cream, and then got picked up by my uncle to talk business with Honda dealer so I will STUN in the summer.
Later on my dad got a call saying that my grandpa finally got in a ICU room. I am so thankful for the hospital at this point. My dad and Kevin head towards the hospital first because my grandma, uncle and aunties wants to have dinner so we split up.
We ended up at this soup drinking place where we saw two Taiwanese celebrities eating next to us. I was going to say what’s up but they were with their two kids, and I didn’t want everyone to see them and what not so we kept it cool. I had some Taiwanese beer with my family and it was an honor cheering to my 81 years old grandma.
I got burnt by the soup up until now my tongue still numb. Afterwards we left back to my grandma’s place to kick it where I spent most of my night talking to my girlfriend and watching movies with my cousins.
The moment I opened my eyes this morning is hearing Dyzee yacking..
No, we didn’t get shit faced last night, nor had any sort of alcoholic beverage… but we did go to this famous juice joint. After he finished, we both went back to sleep. Then next thing I know, I opened my eyes again and he ran to the toilet to yack again… For him to yack this bad isn’t a good sign. Normally, I would log on google and look up what to do when someone had food poisoning, but there’s no internet nor wifi around us, so it was bad. I started making calls but no one’s picking up until my brother Kevin picked up and googled it. When he called me back, he said “Take him to a hospital.” I was like oh shit.. situation has reached critical level. A-Ga finally called back, and he was shocked about the news and rushed to the hotel immediately. It took Dyzee awhile to get up off the floor and we rushed to the Emergency Room.
There, I’m not going through any details but they gave him a painkiller and after a good 20 minute nap he felt a lot better. We left to take the bullet train back up North because he’s flying back to Korea.
After awhile, we had to split up because I gotta head back towards Taipei. (THANK YOU A-GA UNDERWORLD / DOUBLE KILL FOR EVERYHING!!!) I hopped back on bullet train, then MRT, and bus to the ER where my grandpa’s staying. First thing I ran to his bed and took out my KOD trophy and showed him. I was screaming “FIRST PLACE YEYE! FIRST PLACE!!” all he did was nod, and slowly closed his eyes. Seeing him like this in bed is such a painful experience… A 100 year-old war veteran who fell twice at the age of 95+ in order to still be alive, that’s basically on the same level as Jesus Christ performing miracles to people. People at the hospital was so shocked after finding out his age… After being at the hospital for awhile, I left home to rest up. Finally get a chance to talk to my lady, but I got a phone call from my maid who stays at the hospital to take care of grandpa telling me that grandpa isn’t doing so good. I packed all my stuff, and called Kevin telling him the situation and rushed to the hospital again. The doctor told us that he might not make it through the night, and my dad was already on the plane to Taiwan… so my uncle asked the doctor if they can try their best to keep him alive until my dad arrives… They put some new blood in my grandpa and hope he can pull through. After awhile, the doctor told us that he is stable for now and we can go home and rest up. My uncle’s son dropped my brother and I at the MRT (bart) station first so my brother can pick up his stuff from his house. We went around his area, and got my favorite food which I haven’t had for four years…
Oh Ah Mi Swah! (exactly how you pronounce it) and it was indeed amazing! Stopped by HRC Dance Academy to see if the homies Bojin and Ghost was there, unfortunately they weren’t!
We head back to my house to meet up with my uncle who hasn’t sleep yet and was looking through old photographs of my grandpa. He took out an ancient piece of paper and told us that’s my grandpa’s diploma when he was 19. Which means this piece of paper is 81 years old… and also all kinds of stories from long ago.
My grandpa’s brother was a movie star back in the days, probably as famous as Jay-Z or Brat Pit status. Same with my grandpa, college basketball team captain also a sport champion. Almost everyday he made it to the front cover of newspaper. All these stories from my uncle really made me kind of depressed because I really wish I learn more about my grandpa when he was still able to communicate..
First of all, It’s April Fool’s day in Taiwan!
We woke up early in the morning because Dyzee got two workshops in Taiwan today. So we had to get ready fast and dip out to the bullet train station. A-Ga picked Dyzee, Choco, and I up then we head towards the station. Choco had to split with us because he have to get everything together for R16 because that’s his job. (MISS YOU MAN!) So we said peace out and hopped on our bullet train to Kao Shung which is the very bottom of Taiwan. We talked about a lot of random things and bboying experiences. In about an hour we arrived at Kao Shung. When we got out the bullet train station I realized we were under a sky scraper shopping center. Taiwan’s normal shops comparing to America’s is like comparing a Lego toy to Gundam. No doubt Taiwan’s scene is most definitely way ahead of America. They notice the smallest things to make sure everywhere people go its precise. For example, super high tech auto everything for every single public restrooms, product packaging, food selections, things to make sure everything around us is convenient, and more.
I wish I can take more pictures, but the trip is just too epic.. Anyways, a Bboy was already expecting us at the station, so we head towards the studio together. When we arrived, so many bboys greeted us. Some even remember me from KOD. The workshop was very interesting over all, but It was hard to translate everything Dyzee says perfectly.
The workshop went on for two hours, then we had to rush back up North for another workshop. We were 30 minutes late so we had to catch the next bullet train to Xing Zhu. Both Dyzee and I were so tired, translating workshops isn’t as easy as you guys think.
When we got there, the scenery was SO beautiful.
We weren’t in the city, just farming area and mountains around us. A Bboy picked us up and head to Monster studio. A-Ga bought us microwaveable popstickers, potato wedges and fried chickens from 7-11. When we arrived, the place outside looks janky but surprisingly the studio looks really nice. Just like any other places in Taiwan. (don’t judge a book by its cover!)
workshop was a whole different approach than the last one earlier today, so I learned even more from the man. After two and a half hour, we wrapped up the workshop and head out to a famous chicken rice place to grub. Being with A-Ga, everything’s paid for. Hotel, drinks, food, taxi/train fair everything! Thanks once again A-Ga! Afterwards we head to this famous drinks place for some fruity drinks, and then back to Monster Studio. We rest up a bit until our time to aboard the train, the Bboy dropped us back off at the station and we went back to Tai Zhong. After we picked up A-Ga’s car, we picked up his Gf and head to this massage joint. One hour full back massage holy shit it was the most painful experience I’ve ever had. Same with Dyzee. After the massage he doesn’t feel well so we went straight to the hotel.. Next morning.. All hell breaks lose..
Today, I woke up on the hard rock solid floor with sore neck because my pillow was made from two small face washing towels. It sucked. Got ready for KOD with Dyzee and Choco, and head to the venue super sleepy. We got a taxi and head towards to venue.
When we arrived, it hasn’t started yet so we walked around to look for things to eat. Arrived at a random 7-11, Dyzee and I got cold noodles and few energy drinks and head back.
The noodle was fresh as always, energy drinks and bam. I’m ready to go. Entered 1v1, the MC couldn’t pronounce my name so the whole night I was known as “USA BBOY”. (lawlz) the competition itself was dope, nice venue, in front of this huge sky scraper around a popular shopping district. Anyone who wants to watch can come. Throughout the day, I kept falling asleep because I’m still running on jet lag schedule. Next thing you know, I’m against Taower in the finals. Taower of HRC is known as the best Bboy in Taiwan. All kinds of insane tricks that will easily blow me out the water but surprisingly I still got a lot to do. One thing I was upset about is that my second round I gassed out fast so I didn’t do as good as I expected but still did okay overall. At the end of the jam, they did the 3,2,1, raise the winners hand thingy. It was super nerve wrecking but guess who’s hand was up?! I’m super happy about my win but definitely still got a lot to learn. With all these experienced bboys, I’m trying my best to learn as much knowledge as I can. Especially Dyzee, who calls me Cowdick. But I call him Carl.
But anyways. One thing that inspired me the most lately is that he kept telling me that I reminded him of his old self. He said “you remind me a lot of my old self, except smarter.” to me, that means a lot. The way I act, the way I dance and also “never gets fat.” after the Jam, we went to this food place around night market in the cuts, Bboy A-Ga of Underground / Double K treated everyone out. Thank you!!
It was truly an experience. We went to a friend of A-Ga, Choco, and Bojin’s apple product shop called Apple8, and I’m telling you this place shits on Apple Stores. On top of that, each and every one of us gets one item of any choice for free :) There’s some of the dopest iPhone cases, chargers, accessories, and so much more!
Right next to the store there was a 7-11, Dyzee wants to try Taiwanese hard liquor so we went and bought a few drinks, I got this super healthy veggie drink though.. haha!
Took a few shots in Apple8 then we went to a hip hop party strictly dancers and underground hip hop performances. It was SICK! VIP all you can drink, free entrance and all! Later on, electro house all night. After everything we had this certain hotdog with rice wrap and head back to the hotel. Finally get to cupcake with the lady for a short time. The drunk Carl said some things to the lady but it was extremely flattering… haha! What a night, I must say I had an amazing day over all and winning my second oversea battle ever! We KO’d till the morning.