Time to start the difficult task of blogging two weeks of a packed schedule and a good time. My family (Mom, Dad, and Zak) arrived in the Taipei airport around 6am, and we headed to the hotel I'd chosen. After an interesting breakfast (brave Zak decided to try the Chinese breakfast, only to find that congee with vegetables and tofu was a little too strange for a first meal in Taiwan), and getting settled we headed out to the CKS Memorial hall by MRT. I'd tried the MRT the night before and was sure I could do it without dying or getting slammed in the door or losing a crutch down the gap between the platform, but I still wasn't too sure about escalators. Though I did master them later in the day.
The memorial hall is flanked by two other buildings, all in traditional Chinese style. We had fun wandering through the gardens, snapping pictures, and my dad and Zak even raced to the top of the stairs at the monument. Mom and I stayed at the bottom. I'd had more than enough stairs by then, and that was only the first activity! Unfortunately, to get from our hotel to the MRT station you had to go down and up again under the major intersection we had to cross.
We had lunch and admired the cool architecture at the Living Mall, and brave Zak discovered he also didn't like duck. Poor kid didn't get much to eat that first day!
We all dozed off on the MRT to Danshui, and unfortunately weren't able to enjoy it fully because it was getting cold and rainy by the time we got there, but we got some Taiwan favorites: candied strawberries on a stick, and Zak played a darts game where he won a toy. We went back to the hotel early for a nap and then out for dinner with Cindy, one of my friends who lives in Taipei. I think we called it a night before 10 that day!
The next day was Zak's 13th birthday, and we celebrated with a McDonald's lunch of his choosing and then headed to the zoo. Thankfully they had wheelchairs there you could borrow, because I don't think I could have made it the whole afternoon walking around the zoo!
Lessons learned on the first day:
- keeping busy will fight off jet lag for awhile
- Chinese breakfast may not be as "cool" as it sounds
- it's ok to take a taxi when your legs are tired, and don't worry when your taxi driver puts on his glasses halfway through the journey
- don't give tired people too many options, or lunch at a food court could be slightly disastrous
- you can do a lot on crutches
- you don't have to squeeze to hard when pulling a candied strawberry off the stick, in fact, it's better that you don't
- don't be afraid to rest when you need to, or when it looks like they need to