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Taiwan: Day 1: I walk around the block and am hot. Also there was a lot of flying



blog-0852724001367298751.jpgHello All!

So, basically, I'm in Taipei for two weeks, and being here I thought to myself, I should write a blog about some of the things I do. Then I thought to myself, wait a minute, I kind of have this blog thing that I never use. THEN I had an idea, and it was this one: "What if I use this blog thing that I already have as a blog to write about my trip?" Since I couldn't really see a downside (other than drawing attention to some atrociously embarrassing older posts), I thought I would steam on ahead and start talking a bit about my trip here.

So, right now it is 12:54 local time (on Tuesday April 30th!), and I have been here since 6am this morning. I left home at 8:30ish local time on Sunday, and lost a day somewhere on the flight because of the time change. Whatever. Despite losing time, I still spent a very long time on the plane, which was nice.

I met some girls who were traveling together on my flight from Saskatoon to Calgary, who I then met again on my flight from Vancouver to Taipei. If I remember correctly, their eventual destination was Bankok, Thailand, so I hope they have a great time there!

I read all of Mary Robinette Kowal's new book, Without a Summer, on the plane, and started Naomi Novik's third Temeraire book. It feels great to get some fun reading done for once! Without a Summer was a great read, and I was surprised and sorry that it was finished so quickly.

I also played a bit of Fire Emblem, but am still stuck on the same level. Don't ask. Other than that, I pretty much just ate and slept. Ooooo, and played Solitaire, because I'm boring like that.

Once I landed in Taipei, my first challenge was to get through customs, and let me tell you, it was quite the challenge. At least for me anyways. On my arrival card, I needed to note down where I was staying, but I am staying with my friend Jezreel and didn't know his address at the time (actually, now I've had him write it down for me, and I'm still not sure I know it). Anyways, the lady at customs said it would be fine if I gave her his phone number, and I was like, "sure," because I had it in my trusty cell phone.

Little did I know, my back pack felt like messing with me, and was going to have me digging through it to find my cell phone for several minutes, while people went by me through customs.

Anyways, after I found my cell phone, gave Jezreel's number, checked the "other" box (there's a visiting relatives box, but not a just visiting box... strange), and was on my way!

My next challenge was to get my baggage, which turned out to not be a challenge at all, and I soon found Jezreel waiting for me! We hugged, reunited at last, and went on our way.

We chatted on the bus ride from the airport (which is apparently not actually in Taipei proper), and then he showed me how to take the train to his house from the air port that is actually in Taipei (due to lack of space, that one is a little smaller than the one I flew into). Next, we snagged some Burger King, and walked to his house, which is the cutest little one room thing ever!

I proceeded to do some computer things, while Jezreel napped (apparently, he didn't sleep last night, and was more tired than jet-lagged me). Then I too napped for a while, until I felt like getting out of the house for a bit. I then showered, brushed my teeth, got Jezreel to give me a piece of paper with his address to show strangers in case I got lost, and then set out on a walk around the block. It was quite the adventure. I saw some cool buildings, a lot of mopeds, and (get this!) I didn't get lost!!! I didn't even have to back track the way I came from, managing to find my way back to where I started by an alternate route, completing a nice little square around the block. Sorry strangers, maybe I'll ask you for help with directions next time.

Jezreel also tried to teach me the Mandarin word for "thank-you" because apparently people need to say it a lot (no kidding!) When he wakes up, I also think I'll get him to teach me "excuse me" for those crowded trains. It'll probably take some work, but hopefully I'll have mastered at least a few phrases before my two weeks are up!

Other than that, I am quite hot right now, perhaps warmer now that I have been informed it is once again snowing back home.

Stay tuned for further adventures! Peace out!