jump to navigation

No United unfriendly sky for me April 30, 2017

Posted by hslu in Travel.
add a comment

I have told my wife and my friends a long time ago that I didn’t like United. 

More than once. I might add. 

And I haven’t flown with United for years despite the fact that United usually had one of the lowest fares on cross Pacific Ocean flights.

I didn’t like United because of their lousy customer services at the ticket counter and poor in flight accommodation. I especially loathed the United counter at Chicago’s O’Hare airport because it had probably the least efficient, least friendly and least helpful ticket counter staff that I have ever encountered. Once was enough for me. 

I am no big star or famous but I can always walk with my feet if I don’t like this or that company. United, AA and Delta have grown so much after de-regulation, they think they own the sky in the U.S.. They try every way they can to charge extra money to the flying public and totally forget that they are service companies.

The attitude of United agents at O’Hare were terrible, not only to me but to other customers as well. He wouldn’t or couldn’t tell me anything about our Chicago to Tokyo flight which was terribly delayed. While many people were waiting in line to be checked in, the one and only United agent didn’t make any attempt to request for additional assistance even though we were all very anxious for fear of missing our flights.

Over the past ten years, we have taken many flights between DC and Shanghai, DC and Taipei and JFK and Taipei. A few of our flights were with United in late 2000’s because their flights often had one of the lowest fare on Kayak or other websites. 

On these busy cross Pacific Ocean flights, it appeared that almost all flight attendants on United were women in their 50’s. They got these assignments probably because they have earned enough seniorities to be eligible for these lucrative routes.

During those 15+ hour flights, United flight attendants treated us in the coach section like a herd of cattles. These mean old women shout out instructions and demand us to comply. If you wanted a blanket because cold air was blasting down from the ceiling, they asked us to wait. When we asked them to turn down the temperature or lower the speed of the fan, they said they couldn’t do it. 

The food United served us was always very bad. On the way over to the Far East, we’d have beef in brown sauce with rice. On the way back, it was penne with marinara sauce. Lettuce with brown spots looked like it was three days old . Dinner roll was cold and the butter was hard. It was impossible to spread the butter on the dinner roll. The hot food looked disgusting with dried and burned crust on the edge of the aluminium container. A few pieces of penne not covered by the marinara sauce were burned and tough to chew. Rice was dry and tough to eat. Broccoli was soggy and soaked in dark brown sauce with a layer of film over the top. The green peas, corn and diced carrots tasted like they’ve been microwaved two or three times too many. Beef was dry and chewy and it tasted like rubber. Dessert was always a piece of carrot cake and friut consisted of 2 slices of apple and a slice of soggy honey dew.

After the first hot meal, these old women turn off the cabin lights even though it was bright daylight outside. They disappeard to their own quarters and took their beauty nap. Once a while, one or two would come back to check on us. Four or five hours later they passed out a cold and dry ham sandwich with a piece of lettuce as flat as a sheet of paper inside. The sandwich was wrapped so tight in saran wrap that it made the sandwich looked like a small football. The bread was tougg and chewy and it tasted like a 2-day old sandwich you found in the back of your fridge.

Exactly two hours from landing the entire crew got busy. They turned on the lights, rushed out the carts, passed out drinks, gave you a small tray of egg with cheese, mushy tater tots, a cold dinner roll and a cup of fruit. Before you finished your breakfast, they started to collect dirty trays and glasses. Soon after, they asked you tO dump all your garbage in a bag so that they didn’t have to dig it out from the front seat back pocket. After a round of coffee, it was time to get you back to your seats and prepared for landing. After landing, these women hid in the back of the airplane, got their bags and suitcases ready and marched off the airplane as soon as the last passenger walked off the airplane. One unlucky flight attendant had to stand by the door to say goodby to us and that’s probably the only smile we’d see on the entire flight.

So much for the friendly sky. It’s not for me.

三義鳥人餐廳 April 30, 2017

Posted by hslu in Chinese Food, Restaurants, Taiwan, Travel.
Tags: , , , ,
add a comment
















Potato soup. 不夠濃。

這是我叫的。名字好聽:南瓜杏鮑菇松露燉飯。你看像不像 bacon。嚇我一大跳。怎麼吃都吃不完。

不記得這是什麼了。好像是一種香菇吧。Deep fried。

Baked mushrooms with cheese.

Pasta 還不錯。Cheese 夠多,味道不差,Pasta 八分熟。我覺得這是比較好吃的一道菜。



梨園湯包舘 April 29, 2017

Posted by hslu in Chinese Food, Restaurants, Taipei, Taiwan, Travel.
Tags: ,
add a comment




果然不錯,排隊有理,沒讓我們失望。總管很客氣,耐心的跟我們介紹他們的特色。我們問他是不是老闆,他說他是店長。可能也有分紅吧。點菜的小姐和送菜的小姐都很年輕,很客氣也很有禮貌。不像有些餐館,忙起來把客人當牛趕。真差勁。店長還說 他們有很多外賣的,都是附近的居民,在他們餐館吃了好多年了。







台北車站紅豆小館 April 29, 2017

Posted by hslu in Restaurants, Taipei, Taiwan, Travel.
Tags: , , ,
add a comment











Jean-Paul Hevin Chocolatier, Taipei 101 April 28, 2017

Posted by hslu in Restaurants, Taipei, Taiwan, Travel.
Tags: ,
add a comment

The first time my wife and I came to 101 several years ago, we had xiaolongbao at dingtaifeng; 鼎泰豐小籠包。I got a case of very serious food poisoning from eating crab-egg infused xiaolongbao. For at least 45 minutes, I went in and out of the bathroom just around the corner from dingtaifeng five times before I could walk by myself. From then on, I have stayed away from 101 because, as Chinese would say, once bitten by a snake, a person will for 10 years be scared of ropes; 一朝被蛇咬,十年怕草繩。

A few weeks ago, my daughter and my son-in-law came from NYC to visit us and they wanted to do what most tourists do in Taipei: go to the observatory deck of 101. That’s the time when I came back to 101 and discovered the food court at the basement of 101.

Today, we are back to 101 to explore. First stop is the Jean-Paul Hevin Chocolatier on the fourth floor. We skipped the afternoon tea for two ($1,280 NTD for 2) and went for coffee, tea and couple of slices of cakes. 

The coffee/Chocolate shop is in the middle of the center court on the fourth floor. It is surrounded by world renowned boutique shops like Prada, Miu Miu, DeBeers, Louis Vuitton, Dior and Bvlgari. Another coffee shop, Sweet Tea, shares the spacious and high (80′ tall) ceilings center court with Jean-Paul Hevin.

Six sets of comfortable leather seats with wooden tables and eight 2 tops surround the glass-enclosed service area. Dark blue carpet, wooden cabinets and a display case filled with enticing chocolate desserts make Jean-Paul Hevin a relaxing but rather expensive place to spend a cozy and pleasant afternoon.

Each of those small squares of chocolate can be had for $130 NTD

It turns out that our coffee, tea and cakes cost more than the afternoon tea set for two. Silly us.

Why not April 26, 2017

Posted by hslu in Global Affair, Travel, Trump.
Tags: , ,
add a comment

Go ahead, Mexico, tax Americans. 

Trump has treated you like second class people. It is time to do the same to the Americans. Trump asks for it and he shall get it. In fact, tax every thing sold in Mexico but made in America too.

Here are some facts: 

1.  About 7.2 million Americans visited Mexico in 2014.

2.  America imports about 660,000 barrels of crude oil from Mexico every day.

3.  America/Mexico trades in 2016:

America export to Mexico: $231 billions

America import from Mexico: $294 billions

It is apparent that America doesn’t like Mexicans but others might. 

Go to Japan instead. It needs immigrants bad. Very bad. VERY very bad as Trump has done on his tweets when he wants to emphasize his point.

Brownie April 26, 2017

Posted by hslu in Life in Taiwan, Taipei, Taiwan, Travel.
Tags: , ,
1 comment so far

Taiwanese brownie sold at Taipei Fine Arts Museum (台北美術館) is probably ten times less sweet than its American cousins sold at any art museum in the U.S.

The brownie measured about 3.5″ x 4″. I kept searching for sugar in the brownie until it was almost all gone.

I have to be frank with you: it looks like a genuine piece of brownie but it just doesn’t taste good at all.

I get it. I really do: eating less sugar is supposed to be good for me, especially when “sangao,” or 三高 in Chinese, is an inevitable outcome for me after I get older in the near future. “Sangao” literally means “three high”: high levels of blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure. People in Taiwan have a way with words. They make complicated sentences and difficult to comprehen concepts simple and easy to remember. “Sangao” is easy to understand, easy to remember and easy to relate to.

But, eating a slice of brownie is supposed to make you feel good in your mouth and fulfilling inside. It is also supposed to make you temperarily forget about “three high” and enjoy life as it is suppose to be enjoyed?

Well, almost every kind of dessert in Taiwan tastes like the baker is three months behind on payments to his sugar suppliers. 

Then again, there aren’t very many fat people in Taiwan for a reason.

Shall I image bites of ultra sweet brownie when I consume my Taiwanese brownie next time?

蔥油餅 – 特大號 April 13, 2017

Posted by hslu in Chinese Food, Taipei, Taiwan, Travel.
add a comment


台北永康商圈 April 10, 2017

Posted by hslu in Chinese Food, Food, Life in Taiwan, Restaurants, Taipei, Taiwan, Travel.
Tags: ,
add a comment












我們選永康牛肉麪,因為 Yelp 和 愛評都給它很高的評價。













兜不攏 April 7, 2017

Posted by hslu in Taipei, Taiwan, Travel.
Tags: , ,
add a comment



112 萬陸客 – 106 萬非陸客 = 6 萬陸客。

6 萬陸客 = – $300 億新臺幣遊覽車損失。

1 個陸客 = – $500,000 新臺幣。









  • 台中市遊覽車公會理事長張治本說全台遊覽車至少有1000台待售。
  • 可是,新北市遊覽車公會理事長馬景仲說全台準備拋售的遊覽車已達3000~4000台。
  • 他還說,更慘的是,遊覽車售價只剩原價的1/4,等於總值超過300億元的遊覽車賣不出去。