Showing posts from March, 2007

can you speak Chinese?

I'm picking up the extra battery for my new computer at the electronics store from a very nervous clerk. She asks me (in English) "Can you speak Chinese?" to which I answer "yes" and she smiles and says "oh good" looking obviously relieved. Then say to me (in English) "Please sign here." That was the only other verbal communication in our transaction.
Sometimes i don't get people.

More Trip Highlights

We spent a few more days in Yuli meeting people and enjoying the beautiful and peaceful countryside. Then it was time to take the train back up to Yilan, when one of the most exciting stories of the trip occurred. Stay tuned for my next post, "My mom, the action hero."

Next came another flurry of visits in Yilan, which concluded with a very relaxing visit to a hot spring co-owned by one of my Dr. students. Unfortunately we don't have any pictures of that.

Back in Taipei, we checked into our hotel: the Grand Hotel, one of the oldest and most renowned hotels in Taiwan! Actually a one night's stay there was cheaper than a typical 5-star hotel, especially when we fond out on arrival that we had been upgraded to a SUITE! Our hotel suite was bigger than my apartment! It had living room, bar, 2 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. It was amazing! We spent a lot of time looking around the hotel and taking pictures there, then went out to finish our tour with the National Palace Museum an…

busy, busy, dreadfully busy

A combination of factors have prevented me from posting about the end of our trip and my day to day goings on...
One of those factors is my computer which is on the verge of obsolete. See it crashes every time I insert a disc into the cd drive (preventing me from uploading pictures, since they're all on cd). It also has no internal battery to speak of and weighs as much as a small child. Did I mention that it's a laptop? haha So anyways, today I finally bit the bullet and bought a NEW computer!
Pictures and reveling to come soon.

Other than that, I've been traveling all over the place (Taipei last weekend, Hualian on Thursday) and starting lots of classes. Some co-workers were here doing school rallies on Tues and Wed, and it was nice to participate a little.

My leg is doing better, though still sore if I walk too much, but a couple of times this week I've left the house and forgotten to take my umbrella/walking stick with me! That shows that I'm not relying on it as …

Things that make me happy right NOW

1. Chai tea that I brought back from Canada
2. Good music that I forgot I had
3. My purple umbrella/walking stick
4. The red and yellow chrysanthemums I received last week
5. My cool and hilarious students, especially the ones I get to see tomorrow

What makes you happy today?

Down South

We had a 3-day excursion to Taiwan's southern part, with my friend Vivian from Yuli. She's originally from Pingtung county, and took a lot of pleasure in showing us around the area.

We also got a taste of aboriginal culture. Vivian is from the Paiwan tribe. Near her village is a cultural and educational area opened by the government.

There we saw a museum, shops and some performances.

We even had an English-speaking tour guide! She was a university student on winter vacation who was volunteering at the center.

Later we stopped to see some fresh mangoes growing. Can't eat them quite yet!

The next day we headed to Kenting National Park, and spent the morning at the aquarium there.

Just before seeing this sculpture of a giant squid, we were entertained by an ice cream vendor. He did tricks with the ice cream as he was scooping it and giving it to customers.

After a delicious lunch and some shopping, it was time to hit the beach! Actually I didn't go down b/c I wasn't feeling…


If you had to guess, what would you say the "Neuro Fuzzy" setting on my washing machine does?
It's about the only English on the thing and as far as I can tell it's on the opposite end of "delicate."
It will forever remain a mystery to me.

Dr.'s advice

After pronouncing my leg to be "beautiful", my doctor gave me the ok to swim and ride a bike. BUT I can only ride a bike on the condition that I add two extra wheels onto the back (aka training wheels) because if I fall I risk serious re-injury. The bone isn't 100% healed yet. He said if I don't want to add training wheels I have to wait 2 more months to ride.
What do do? Having no transportation REALLY sucks!