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Home » Articles » Destinations » Asia » The Night Market in Kaohsiung
The Night Market in Kaohsiung
Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-03-30 00:34:36 (via
Night markets are a part of life in Taiwan where the old and young, the wealthy and the poor mix together as equals.
9  votes
Submit Your Vote   |   Add Comment      23 comments   |   Topic: Taiwan  
Submitted by kiwi on 2007-03-30 07:05:45
This of course is possible to imagine, but you also have a good sense of humor.

How would you like to live in such country?
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Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-03-30 07:13:55
Erm Kiwi, your comment and more so your question defeat my understanding. I have lived in Kaohsiung for over seven years, I am married here and have one son - going to the night market is a weekly if not twice weekly event.
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Submitted by kiwi on 2007-03-30 09:51:18
Reaaaally? Man, sorry I thought you were just visiting. So, did that thing with the three finger glove happen your family actually? ;O)
Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-03-30 10:19:49
Hmmmm, that might be giving away trade secrets!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Submitted by kiwi on 2007-04-13 08:47:41
Hmmmmmm.... does that mean you are in this kind of trade, too? ;O)

So, what do you sell... mmmmm... let me guess: Reabok or Gor-Tex:O) Just kidding.

You probably have a Starblocks cafe or a Pitsa Hot?
Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-04-15 02:03:45
Nope, we just sell three-fingered gloves for a living!
Submitted by roxy on 2007-03-30 10:47:21
Hey ieuandolby and kiwi,
seems that you having a nice discussion:)
I just can't seem to understand, why would people choose to go shopping by night? Don't want to look silly, but is it kind of fashion there or just cheaper prices?
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Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-03-30 20:29:44
Hi Roxy

Yes does seem strange but 'Night Market' really only means Evening not night! The Night Market I go to has typically wound down by 11pm. Others in taipai do go on until 12m or one from what I understand.

The reason for this is simple; the Tiawanese and Chinese work till they drop. Typically both parents work and the children live with their grandparents or do extra schooling until 9pm. So the only time to shop is in the evening - and ofcourse they have no time to cook at home so night markets cater to all those who are too bust to cook, providing cheap and mostly decent food to eat without waiting longer than one-munite for it to arrive on the table.

Look at Singapore - most department stores open until 10pm. Then again look at America as they cater more and more to people who feel the need to have a cup of coffee at 3am or go shopping for the groceries at 4am - now that is sad when compared to the joviality and fun found at a night market!
Submitted by roxy on 2007-04-06 09:12:06
Hi ieauandolby,
Thanks for explaining me:)
actually it is true that because of the high demand some of the shops may work 24/24, and anyway, as you said, the mass shopping in the night markets should be accompanied with much more fun than shopping in the 24/24 shops.
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Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-04-06 21:58:05
Hi Roxy
This is something that is never amiss at a night market - there is always fun and laughter! Many people go simply because of the ambiance, many others because they want to eat and the rest because they need to buy something. But I would say that most people go just to walk around of an evening - to get out of the house in a convivial atmosphere.

Are you by any chance from the states - I did not mean to be rude about them having 24hr cafe's and things?
Submitted by Amber on 2007-04-06 10:32:06
Look at what people have come in this rush to survive or make money. I kinda think how much certain relationships suffer because of this.

I guess it depends on a person's values. I"m sure for a visitor this is quite entertainig - going to a market and buying all kinds of quality things at night...:} I'm sure you can find Dolce and Gabana and Gucci there, except for some reasons it's Dolce and Gobana or Cucci...
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Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-04-06 22:10:35
Hi Amber
My wife has more Dolce and Gobana and Cucci than we can count. unfortunately they all fall apart after one use! The latest purchase, a Gucci purse for 100NTD (3 pounds - 6 US dollars) smells so awful that I can't be near it. It is some sort of paint fumes or something! We've washed it, we've had it out to dry for a week but still the smell remains! What a waste of money - I am positive that if we put together all the fakes we have bought we could have afforded a real one by now.

But to mention your comment about relationships suffering; the life in Taiwan is certainly not about the need to make money - most working married couples with children, work because that is what they do best. It is not because they need to work as Taiwan is by itself quite a wealthy country. Something in their make-up and partly to do with society makes them work, and their children to be pawned off to grandparents. This was great 50 years ago in more communal spirit, but now communities don't exists and the children live during the week with crabby old granny who doesn't really know how to cope with young people.

As an example of friends of ours; the father said that his son and daughter stay with the grandmother all week and in-fact they only get to see them on a Sunday. Why? Because the father said that their noise kept him awake at night and that he felt tired at work! Okay la - there answer, get rid of them, pawn them off so that they no longer make a noise. Why have children I ask myself?

yes, you are right, society suffers and so do relationships - although in Taiwan not many people have time to consider relationships as they are too busy working or having affairs!
Submitted by roxy on 2007-04-10 03:09:17
hi ieuandolby,
I am not from the states, right now I am moving around Europe, but seemingly 24/24 shops are in most of the counties around the world. Isn't it?
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Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-04-11 21:17:33
I found one place in the world where there was no 7-Eleven, starbucks, mcdonalds, piza hut or anything that stayed open past 5pm! It was on a little Island in the middle of the South pacific called Tuvalu, population 9000 people over 27 kilometres squared. Strangely enough though they did have a chinese restuarant!
Submitted by Amber on 2007-04-11 11:33:36
That's too funny... Yeah, that's one lesson I have learned in my life: buy quality products, although it seems like a lot of money, because the money you save on cheap stuff it's not worth it in the end...

I don't undestand it either, when a father avoids his children because they complicate his life... My guess is that, as it is everywhere with many people: you want the fun without the responsibility that may result...

I'm curious about a couple of things.

What made you evaluate the reality of relationships in such a way, unlike others in Taiwan?

How accessible is for a Taiwanese to travel with the money one makes?
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Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-04-11 21:40:07
I only subconsoiusly evaluate relationships here - just that my wife comes back from work or from seeing her freidns with so many terrible stories. Take this one for example: the family consists of two children, a father who works non-stop in his moped business and the mother.

The mother told us many years ago that her husband makes her work from 10 am till 10pm everyday, helping in the shop. We felt so sorry for her. So the first duaghter they had was given to the grandmother to look after and they only saw her on sundays for six hours or so. Then they had a second daughter, they gave her to an aunty to look after!

Soon the husband decided that he could afford to hire someone else to do the work at the garage and told his wife that she could put up her feet up more often and that they should think about bringing the children to live backhome like a normal family.

She put her feet up and did no work at all. Her two duaghters still lived with the grnadmother and aunty. My wife asked her why she doesn't bring the children home, now that she doesnt have to work (or cook as all meals are bought from outside). Her asnwer; impossible, the two girls hate each other and try to scratch the others eyes out everytime they meet.

her husband never forced her to work! This was just an excuse - and now she is getting really fat as she sits around all day doing noting and eating food from outside - not good at all. And her chidlren live happily, hardly knowing who she is!

The second question....................Taiwanese people are basically some of the wealthiest in Asia. They travel worldwide with many of them in America, studying in Britain or europe. Note this; that if Taiwan stopped producing computer chips, LCD screens and mobile phones today, the computer market would fail tomorrow the world over. Look at some of the companies they own, Evergreen one of the largest shipping copmpanies in the world, Yang Ming not far behind. BenQ, Acer Computers, Hon Hai Precision, largest manufacturers of electronics and computer components worldwide, Realtek Semiconductor Corp to name but a few. Oh and not to forget that yahoo was founded by Jerry yang, taiwanese born in taipai, Steve Chen one of the founders of you-tube was born in taiwan, trend micro was another Taiwanese start-up and Nautica, the clothing brand! The Taiwanese have allot of influence, there a number of billionares living here and they are a race never to be underestimated. Most of them have money to spend!
Submitted by christine on 2007-04-13 04:29:41
Hey everybody:)
How you're doing?
Just remembered a funny case from my life about wearing stuff from Prado and Cucci:)
It's 2-3 years ago that I was visiting Istanbul. It's a fantastic city and also known for its bargaining and shopping. I was so amazed to see so many clothes from D&G and Chistian Dior for $3-5, I could't believe my eyes! Of course I bought a lot of them.
Can you believe that after I came to states many people still believed it was genuine Dior and D&G?
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Submitted by Amber on 2007-04-13 08:34:24
Ha-ha-ha! I remember when I was in Tukey I also bought a Tommy Hilfigher blouse for $5 from 10, but it has a defect... o well, and of course is full of cotton...:o)

Wow, Ieuandolby, thanx for sharing. That too incredible... Look, I guess for some people that's the fulfilling lifestyle: to sit with your feet up and do nothing. Yeah, she's not a happy person I think - it's just a mask to compensate for the void inside.

I'm very impressed with the data about the wealthiest people from Taiwan... Who would thing... So, Yang Ming would pass for quality? Pretty impressive...

Is there a big gap between social classes in Taiwan? Is traveling accessible to the majority?
Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-04-15 01:32:21
Hi Christine

Thanks for your comment!

I have one here for you; my friend at college many years ago had an expensive rolex watch! He managed to buy a copy rolex in singapore that looked exactly like the real one. The difference being the price, 1000 plus pounds to 6 pounds! One day he was showing off his watches to some fellow students and once finished got into his car and drove away. Unfortunately he left a rolex watch on the top of his car (or so we can only assume)! He therefore had only one rolex watch to his name. He insisted to us all that it was the real one, stuck by his guns and made sure that everybody knew that he had only lost a cheap copy!

I can't prove it but he spent so much time and insistance trying to tell us this fact that I can only presume that he lost the real one. One other thing to back this theory up was that he stopped wearing a rolex altogether, resorting instead to an off-the-shelf seiko!

Submitted by ieuandolby on 2007-04-15 01:41:55
Hi again Amber
Yep, there are the rich and the pooor! Just like in the UK and America and the rest of the world.

There are people who are too lazy and self-centred who automatically assume that the rest of the world owes them a favour and who don't lift a finger in an honest days work! I could be talking about any country here.

The large social plight on Taiwan at the minute are the hundreds of thusands of the old soldiers of Chaing kai Cheks army, all around 70, 80 or 90 and who are all marrying foreign brides from mainland china, vietnam, ect! So here we have thousands of non taiwanese or mandarin speaking young girls of anything between 18 to 35 who are having chidlren to (not exactly far above the bread line) ex-soldiers of nearly three times there age!

These 'oldies are dying' well before the children grow up, the wife to survive marries another 'oldie',

These ex-soldiers have often never done a days work since running away from the communists, for the last forty to fifty years they have lived off the welfare provided by the government.

I bet you can only imagine the social discrepancy all this imbalance causes!

In my opinion the gap between classes is widening, not only through education and wealth but also through a language barrier that prevents some from gaining the other.

But compared to many countries in aisa the average Taiwanese has money to spare and that includes for travelling!
Submitted by christine on 2007-04-17 08:40:07
Hey guys,
Seemingly Chinese and Turkish are the best fake makers:)
I remember when I was in Turkey, I entered a boutique in one of the Istambul malls. All clothes seemed to be original from Channel and other well known brands. Even the tag showed "Made in France" or "Made in Italy". However, when you looked at the inside bottom tag of a clothe where it was indicated the textil, there was indicated "Made in Turkey".
Very interesting:)))
I was feeling like Sherlock Holmes, indeed!
As about your college friend, I also feel that he has lost his original Rolex, mamma what a lost!!! It's understandable that he has not wear Rolex anymore. And again, this makes me think that Chinese make excellent fakes:)
Hey Amber, bad for you that the blouse from Tommy had a defect. I like this brand and it's a pity that they make "low quality" fakes:). I know it sounds weird:)
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Submitted by lazzybug0608 on 2007-10-24 12:05:01
Hi ieuandolby
I'm a Taiwanese living at Tainan for 18 years
before but now living at Taipei now for studying
I'm happy that you really the night market we
have.Isn't it a wonderful place to take a rest
after a tiring day? haha
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-10-24 12:46:45
It is certainly great - not for the rest, but for enjoyment. I sometimes come back from the night market feeling exhausted - smile!
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