Yesterday we woke up for our usual 4:15am meditation, then got up to go to the park. We sat near the giant Kwan Yin statue and watched a curious guy doing his exercises behind the golden bamboo.
He had a halo of white hair & though clearly in his 80’s, had more energy + vibrancy than an 18-year-old. His body was slender but he looked very strong.
We started following his movements and doing his exercises with him, as he rolled his head, and vigorously massaged his scalp, cheeks & ears - for much longer than I thought I ever could.
Afterward, I could hear better, see better and it felt like the whole world opened up around me. It felt like my aura started to glow around my head.
He left and so we went to walk, jog, sprint, rinse + repeat around the park. It’s filled with massive groups of elders doing exercises + tai chi practice. Supremely inspiring.
We jogged around until we found a pond, surrounded by trees host to huge white birds. I got excited because I saw a reflexology rock pathway. Taylor & I hopped on ... ouch, oooo, ouch, ouch, ouch. Then we went to the next one, holding on to the railings. A more advanced one, rocks more pointy and compressed & extremely painful to walk on. We spotted the curious elder man again, swinging his legs and then rubbing his calves on the rails, like a giant guasha treatment.
He saw us and came over and chatted in Mandarin. I could understand the gist - and words here and there - but not entirely. He showed us how to walk in the rocks and explained that it’s good for ‘wei chi’ (auric strength/immune system) and also for releasing tension in your shoulders, easing lower back misalignments + improving posture.
Taylor & I could only stand it for about 15-20 minutes. He stayed and kept walking like a pro. I tried doing the guasha on my calves with the railing as I stood on the rocks. Holyyy. New goals for equipment at the office. You’d never know you have such incredible knots in your calves until you do that!
Now one of my favorite parts of the day is heading to the park at 5am to run and do exercises like this. We've even seen people hanging on the bars like monkeys ... stretching the fascia in the lower back + massaging the organs.
Every day we look for our new friend, who we’re almost positive is a Kung fu master. Radiant as hell & super strong.
Love from Taipei,
Katie + Taylor
P.S. Guess who we saw biking around our neighborhood today ...