Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Taipei

We have just returned from a 4D/3N company trip to Taipei. It was the Merdeka weekend and with the National day falling on Sunday, we only had to take Saturday and an extra day (Tuesday) off. We did the rounds of most of the tourist spots in the day and every night was spent at the night markets.

We went to Raohe Street night market on Saturday, Shihlin night market on Sunday and Shihda on Monday.
At Shihlin we saw the hawkers packing up every time the police appeared and reopening their stalls after the cops left. This appearing and disappearing act was repeated a number of times throughout the night. Don't know how they do it. I would have closed shop long ago.

People in Taipei eat the yuckiest stuff imaginable. Every and any part of the animal.

Tucking into the famous gigantic chicken chop at Shihlin night market.

We enjoyed the Shihda night market best of all. Lots of clothes and not so crowded.

For those of us who are "banana," the greatest snag was the language problem. We could not understand most of what the tour guide was saying and trying to string together enough words from our minimal, sub-basic voacabulary to make a coherent sentence was a herculean task. Of course, the four tones only served to make things worse.
One language blooper came about as a result of reading the name of a road as an English word instead of the pinyin version of the Chinese word.

We read "Bade Road" as in 'bade you farewell' whereas it was meant to be read as Ba De Lu in Mandarin. Because there is such a word as "bade" in the English language, it simply did not occur to us that it was not an English word despite the fact that the names of all the roads on the map are pinyin versions of their Chinese names.


On our last day was a free day so we went up 101, enjoyed the sights there and left without a single picture of the actual building! The only consolation was the many pics we took at the observatory tower.

Pretending that we are taking a walk among the clouds.

That's the gigantic damper that stabilizes the 101 building in the background. That's me hugging a 'damper baby'.

Encountered a interesting looking tooth pick during lunch at 101. We thought it was an ingenious design until we tried it and found it was not of any practical use.

The only actual tour we went on was on the second day. We went on a tour to the Museum and also the Presidential Palace. After that we should have gone off on our own. They took us to listen to some talk on lingzhi and another talk on feng shui.
Finally, we wasted two hours travelling to and from Dansui.

The only consolation was the artsy venue they took us to for lunch. This was a bonus because the normal tour does not throw in such a good location for lunch. We also stayed in a 5-Star hotel whereas the normal tour only provides 3-star accommodation. We also flew there by airbus whereas normal flights are by 747. All these specials on the Merdeka package.

Pam striking a pose to mirror the topiary at the Presidential Palace gardens.

Ken and I imitating Chiang Kai Shek and Song Mei Ling.

Here's the artsy restaurant we went to for lunch.

1 comment:

pamsong said...

WAH! You blogged Taipei before I blogged wei! Where can??? I NEED TO BLOG THIS NOOOOWWWW!!!