Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Kaohsiung Today.

Today was the first day we saw blue sky since landing in Taiwan. Blue sky and lots of it!

We checked out of our hostel in Taipei this morning, cabbed it to the train station and caught the THSR (Taiwan High Speed Rail) to Kaohsiung. There were just two stops on the way and with a top speed of 300km/hr we were in Koahsiung in an hour an a half.

Before leaving Taipei I had taken a half hour to meticulously copy out, in large print, the Chinese characters for the address of the hostel we are staying at and it seems my ability to transcribe Chinese characters has proven not too shoddy because twice now a taxi driver has had no issues with my addresses.

Once again, Amanda and I were very impressed with how well organized the journey was, even catching the cab from the train station in Kaohsiung involved four uniformed employees coordinating which traveler would take which taxi. While loading our 40Lbs backpacks into the back of the cab, another uniformed employee stepped in to provide assistance, this individual seemed old enough to deserve a walker, never mind to be grabbing our backpacks from us and handing them to the cab driver. Best of all was that during the whole exchange the old man couldn’t stop laughing and grinning ear-to-ear, showing off his one last tooth, while nodding to the cab driver and repeating the word “heavy” over and over.

Our hostel is lovely and we will be staying here for 6 nights before moving on. The individual that checked us in, Kaleb, was incredibly friendly and has been the most proficient English speaker we have met on our travels. The hostel owner, Sam, has provided us with a complimentary bottle of millet wine to say thank you because he does not usually have guests stay for as long as us. If you, like me, know very little about millet, then just read the write up on this website and you can get away with pretending to have a Phd on the subject matter.

For dinner we wandered around a fair bit, explored a bit of the harbour and the “Love River” and we eventually stumbled upon a city park with palm trees and a stage where a band was singing and food and drink was being served. By this point we we both very “è” and “kě​” (hungry and thirsty) so we sat down, watched some of the performances and had dinner.

We haven’t planned out our day for tomorrow yet but there is an enormous amount to do in Kaohsiung so we will certainly be kept busy!

Good night, for now.

View from our room.

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