Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Taiwan Closing

Originally I intended just to visit Taipei and then leave for Japan. However I had such a great time in Taipei I decided I might as well circle the island. In my opinion it was well worth it.
Hard to see, but 101 at night.

The people of Taiwan are so friendly and helpful. I was totally blown away that so many people invited me to stay with them, a few of them being the couple from Taroko Gorge and Joe and Sarah from Tainan. I even met this dancer Lydia that gave me her phone numbers and said to call them when I was her city, she'd be willing to show me around. The lady that gve me a tour of Tainan went out of her way to show me a side of the city I would have missed; this isn't an isolcated case, I also met another American Charles that had the same experience in Taipei. Entire families have stopped what they were doing to take me to my destination when I was lost. The people here are just too kind. The night markets are a wonderful way to eat on a budget, everything looks, smells and tastes so good. The mass transit system in Taipei is top notch. There's plenty of hiking and beautiful scenery. Shopping of computers is not too bad either, but really, the prices are pretty close to those in the USA, so only buy if you find a great deal.

There are cons of course.... the weather is pretty much awful. It's hot and humid all the time, and while I was here I sat through three typhoons that altered my plans more than I'd like. I had to miss mountains, lakes, islands, and beaches because of them. There are stray dogs everywhere. People here love them though, they'll feed them and pet them. They just don't want to actually keep it, so they become like community pets. The problem is stray dogs can be dangerous and there's dog poo poo on the street. Joe from Taipei said the dogs are not a big deal because every Taiwanese kid knows how to fight against them: you just through rocks at them. I guess if that's what works.

If you do not speak any mandarin I would say it would be easier to stay in Taipei, but I know plenty of people that didn't know any mandarin that circled the island by themselves.

I think compared to Hong Kong, Taipei can't really compete when it comes to being a big city like the New Yorks of the world. The shopping and views from Hong Kong are better, things are open later and everyone is always shopping for electronics. Taipei has these things on a smaller scale, but it also has so much natural beauty to offer, a unique history, and some really nice people. Oh yeah.... be sure to bring meds for your stomach though.

I had a wonderful time in Taiwan (except for the typhoons) and look forward to my next visit.

Some more Food

Fried chicken with ham and cheese inside!

Some burnt corn thing... it doesn't look very good does it? It didn't taste all that good.

Digital Plaza Revisited
Taipei - Digital Plaza - Some special day with booths and promotions.
Booth Babe and DVD-Rs
World of Warcraft
Handing out crap.

Typhoon #3

Stuck eating Burger King because everything else was closed from the typhoon. It sucks just as much as Burger King back home.

Underground Society around the Taipei Power Building. One of the few bars that features Rock music. I think this was a small local band. Not very crowded, small bar, but it was fun.

1 comment:

tony said...

vince, you got all the pics of good tasty foods, man.

thanks for the appetite!!!