Thursday, April 3, 2008


Feb 24:

We've finally made it to Taipei and what a different city to Hanoi. Much more modern and civilized! Fewer bikes, more orderly traffic, superb underground system, and way less noise!

We sure had a hectic day with Rebecca yesterday. We went to the Sun Yat Sen memorial and watched the changing of the guard, saw the latern festival, went up Taipei 101 and saw the sights and the damper. And on display in the 4 corners was a textile/quilting exhibit with old and new work that was put on by the Taipei Mothers Art Association. So we were all happy!

We also went to the Jade market but it was so overwhelming that I didn't have a clue what to buy. Ended up buying a string of lapis lazuli beads which I'll get gussied up at home.

We've eaten at R's favourite dumpling restaurant, had Korean BBQ in the food court of 101 and I will have to walk more, faster, if I keep eating at this rate! I think we're almost the only non-Asians at the Cosmos hotel, and except for eggs and white bread for toast the whole rest of the buffet is Chinese or Japanese food. But the place is clean and friendly and well located for travelling around the city.

Feb 25

Rebecca still has classes for a few days so we were on our own for a bit. We went to the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial hall, now renamed the Democratic Memorial Hall. Amazing set of buildings to be built to honour one person. Since he's not so popular now, a kite exhibit was hung which prevented a good viewing of his statue. We enjoyed the exhibit on the lower level of folk art and carved jade. The Main train station is proving to be a very useful location- we met Rebecca there and had lunch, then caught the subway to go out to the Naional Palace Museum where we saw another exhibit of jade, this time very old work, and a lot of calligraphy. We toured around the Shillin Night Market - only Monday night and it was very busy - and a great place to get an ice cream cone!

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