Yesterday I took a day away from work (well, I had breakfast with the head of our US Ops, and talked about how the brand is progressing). There is so much to do at the moment, and when traveling weekends and weekdays become so confused. I wanted to take advantage of knowing someone non-cycle related in Taipei to give me an insight into what the city and life is really like. She suggested that we went to the Yangmingshan national park mainly as it is the closest to the city. I had expected to go for a good walk, but really it was more of a light stroll, owing to the high humidity at the 26 degree temperatures. I experienced some local cuisine, with fried battered mushrooms (served with grated wasabi) from a street side seller. This is a really none tourist area, and I think I was an attraction myself, being obviously different (I am pretty tall). The waterfalls and the surroundings were really beautiful, and I will return.
Following this, I returned to Xiaolin’s district to meet with her sister and niece. Neither of them spoke English, but the 8 year old niece gave it a go, and I am completely smitten. She was so adorable.
Xiaolin and I then went to the night market (Shinlin) to eat the local delicacies before I returned for my final night in the United Hotel, Taipei, for this trip.
Right now, I am in Kansai International Airport having flown to Japan from Taiwan this morning. I am currently waiting hours before continuing my trip on to South Korea this evening. It is very windy and the island that the airport is, is being heavily battered on all sides by the ocean. Flights aren’t suffering delays, but arrival was extremely bumpy.