Photos of Taipei at 4:00 a.m.

(photo by CNA)

(photo by CNA)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News)—4:00 a.m. is the strangest moment in the city of Taipei and the strangest moment between us, said a Central News Agency report excerpting a photo essay titled “4 a.m. in Taipei” in the media outlet’s latest biweekly “Culture Plus” (文化+). “We can easily shut our eyes and believe that the world would stop running even though it never did,” the excerpt said. “There are people with lost mind still looking for comfort in the street, and there are more people already up and working diligently to earn their living."

The following is the English translation of part of the CNA report.

People are waiting to register with a doctor in front of National Taiwan University Hospital

At 4 a.m., many people are waiting in front of National Taiwan University Hospital to register with a doctor.

Online registration with a doctor is available for most departments in the hospital, but the vacancies are usually filled very quickly. So NTU Hospital allots certain vacancies for onsite registration.

The hospital will begin to let waiting patients take a number at 5:40 a.m., but by 5:00 a.m. there is usually a long line of people.

(photo by CNA)

(photo by CNA)

A chef at an old brand traditional breakfast store is getting ready to serve

A chef at a traditional breakfast store on Jinhua Street that is more than 30 years old is busy in the kitchen getting everything ready. The store starts serving breakfast at 4 a.m., but preparation usually starts at 1 a.m.

When the breakfast store opens its door, the empty eating area comes alive immediately. Early risers, on-duty police officers, taxi drivers, a grandma with a grandchild come one after another. The store owners and employees greet their guests heartily.

(photo by CNA)

(photo by CNA)

Street cleaners are sweeping up in the streets

After a night of hustle and bustle, Raohe Street Night Market becomes quiet but is full of trash that visitors and stall owners left behind.

A group of street cleaners silently show up in the street and begin to sweep up the mess. They are working against the clock to restore cleanliness to this place before the day breaks.

(photo by CNA)

(photo by CNA)

A greengrocer is digging up bamboo shoots before dawn

A greengrocer surnamed Hsiao who has a stall at a traditional market in Wanhua District has to dig up bamboo shoots in the grove and pick vegetables in the garden between 3 and 4 a.m. so that she can take them to the market in time for sale.

She says sometimes she has a good harvest and sometimes it’s not, adding that she has to depend on heaven for food.

In the dark and silent bamboo glove, she actually depends on a headlight and her good eyesight to spot bamboo shoots that have just come out of the ground.

Digging up bamboo shoots is a challenge against time because by daybreak they will become too old.

(photo by CNA)

(photo by CNA)