Friday, March 23, 2012

Taiwan Day 8: The End of My Journeys

 After we walked around the Longshan temple, we walked over to an herbal medicine street where there were a bunch of vendors selling medicinal teas, etc.  My aunt got me a menthol grass tea of some sort, it's suppose to be very refreshing.  It tasted decent and the menthol was strong, so yes, in a way, it was quite refreshing.  Then we headed to a historic street.
Yes this is part of the historic street and look, it's Asian graffiti!  I thought it was pretty awesome.  After we walked through the historic street we went and got some lunch.  I wasn't hungry but we ate anyway at a nice little side street shop.  Thereafter my aunt had a previous engagement and so I told her I was going to go to the CKS Memorial Hall.  She decided to accompany me there on the MRT since that's where she does her volunteer work.  Once she got me there, we said good bye for who knows how long.  She was my only aunt/uncle that hugged me goodbye.
So here's the CKS Memorial Hall.  The Hall itself has meeting rooms and exhibitions.  Outside of the Memorial hall there was the ballet and opera building... I think.  Some form of theater/music/performance halls.  Those are the two that you see in the picture above.
Here's the CKS monument and the picture below is the ceiling of the this place.

Here's the actual memorial hall.  I went there to see the changing of guards and the art exhibits besides it being a really cool place to snap photos of Taiwanese architecture.
So, on the outer areas of the Memorial there are gardens.  BEAUTIFUL gardens and here are some photos.

I was told that a lot of brides take pictures in this hall way.

So this is actually an entrance to the restrooms.  Crazy huh!
I spent most of my afternoon at the CKS Memorial, then I took the MRT to another little park, thereafter I started heading back.  It was getting late and once again I knew I should be home around 6:00pm especially since I was taking off at 8pm that night from Gina's.  Walking home I crossed the Sun Yet Sen Memorial where the lantern festival was still going on.  There were lots of people selling bubble wands and bubble guns, etc. and I caught this guy doing a neat little trick.  He makes a giant bubble and then blows on it to create bubbles inside.  He was the BEST at doing this as far as I could tell and he didn't do it for long so I was quite lucky to have caught the photo.
On the street that Gina lives there was a nice looking bakery.  I went it and got myself a custard bun, one of the few things that I actually wanted to eat and hadn't gotten a chance to all trip long.  I figured, I was already looking like I was 4-5 months pregnant, what the heck, a custard bun couldn't do much more damage.
When I got home Gina's MIL started making dinner.  We ate around 6:30, then I packed up everything else.  Gina had sent for a car to come get me.  Her and my grandma and her maid walked me down and said good bye there.  It took about 45-50 min to get to the airport.  I had to wait about 1.5-2 hours before boarding.
To be totally honest, yes, I did miss my family tons, but I was sad, really sad.  I LOVED being in Taiwan.  It was a fantastic experience.  I regret not coming more often when I was younger.  There were summers back when I was an undergraduate when I could've taken teaching jobs to teach English in Taiwan, but I didn't because I thought it'd be important to stick around and find my future. I believe that was a mistake and I should have come back at least 1 summer out of those 5 years that I spent at UW.  But, I know now that it's not hard to come back.  I was terrified for about a week before I came, thinking that I wouldn't be able to communicate as well as I would've liked or that I might get lost, but it was easy.  It was fantastic and it was easy.  So, maybe in a few more years when the kids are older I can go back again.


  1. Eileen, I've LOVED seeing all these pictures, and hearing your stories- just amazing! (And how fantastic that you're still fluent in Mandarin!) So incredible :)

  2. Love that graffiti! Way better than the stuff we get here. I'm so glad you had such a great experience.

  3. What a trip! By the way, the pictures in this post were my favorites.