Saturday, June 4, 2016

taiwan, pt iii

{pebble beach at qixingtan}

{taroko gorge and coastal driving}

{su'ao, small fishing village on the east coast}

{and back to taipei to round out the trip}

the drive up the east coast of taiwan was the best. everything i love about traveling - the road tripping, the nature exploring, the small town discovering - was provided on our drive from pingtung back to taipei. i basked in the 80-degrees weather and beachy terrain, having been subject to spring showers and fog during our time on the west coast.

from pingtung, we drove north along a bumpy, dirt-road highway through the mountains. during the beginning of the drive, the adults in the car (read: not me) proceeded to have an enthusiastic conversation in chinese, which, at this point, was a cue for me to fall asleep, as i could make zero contributions to the discussion. when i woke up an hour later, i found out that we had turned the car around to take a "safer" route up north, which included two hours of backtracking and an eight hour drive around the southern tip near kenting. it was then that i vowed to learn chinese, if only to prevent the elders from ever making an eight hour detour ever again.

a few favorites from the last few days of our trip: a visit to the odd chihsing tan katsuo museum near hualien, dedicated to dried bonito flakes; exploring swallow grotto in taroko gorge, hard hats included; interesting ice cream, peanut shavings, and cilantro wraps in the small fishing village of su' ao (when i see a weird food abroad, i stalk the crap out of it until i find out what it is... and then eat it); a last dinner in the grand hotel taipei.

one for the books, as they say.

"every life has its trials and tribulations. we can navigate them more skillfully when we don't waste time and energy shooting ourselves with a second arrow - such as dwelling on how much greener our neighbor's grass looks, compared to ours." 
- thich nhat hanh 

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