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Sun, 05 Aug 2012
day 02 in taiwan (0 comments)
after getting up we decided to stay another day in the "happy family" hostel right next to central station. after booking another night, we took a look at a little park right opposite the hostel. it is "yixian park"[001-007], with a little pond and a small museum (which we didn't enter). also there was some kind of cosplay photo shooting. we got ourselves the "easycard" - a card for the metro, on a prepaid basis. you swipe the card when you enter the transport network, and swipe it again once you leave. based on the amount of stations you travelled, the sum will be subtracted from the card. our first ride on taipeh metro took us to longshan temple[012- 038], a pretty big and busy temple. a lot of people burning incense sticks and tables full of presents for the deities. one person, we assume he was working at the temple, gave us two dumplings. we were pretty unsure whether we should use them as a present, have them blessed, or simply just should eat them. since they looked so delicious, and there were already tons of other presents, we decided to eat them (i hope we didn't bring the wrath of god upon us). and they were delicious! nomnom.
next we took a walk to the nearby botanical garden. but we underestimated the distances on the map and in reality. the walk turned out to be more of a hike. on our way to the garden we came by a street full of bird sellers[050-055]. there were loads of poor birds that seemed to be in a bad condition. one of the selling guys also didn't want us to take pictures. when we finally got to the botanical garden[059-070] we saw our first cat, that was living in the garden. while chasing the kitty, some kind of insect must have bitten nina, as she got some bumps all over her feet. poor her.
after we left the garden we were heading for the "taipei 101", the second tallest skyscraper in the world (and tallest up to 2004). going there we came by a shopping mall where we had a coffee break and went to some shops[078], and the taipeh city hall[083-087,110-114]. the lower floors of taipei 101 are again a shopping mall[092-108] - but this time for luxury articles. so loads of shops like "hugo boss", "dior", "rolex", "louis vuitton", etc. when we finally got to the elevator for the tower, there were so many people that we decided to return here on some other day. seems like sunday is the day to go for an outing. on our way out we found a less luxurious toy shop[101-103], having all kind of cool stuff, including some squid girls stuff.
then the sun set, and it got dark pretty fast. seems like the days here are not that long and it gets dark early. so we enjoyed the sun set[111-121] and come to the "sun yat-set memorial hall"[119-121]. loads of people there hanging out, playing with friends, or walking their dog. next stop was "zhangxiao fuxing" where we went to another shopping mall, named "SOGO"[125]. of course, shops all over the place. but we got hungry by now, so we tried to find a good restaurant and ended up in some interesting chicken restaurant, where we got an introduction to what we will have for dinner [126-132]. you basically choose what ingredients you want and what type of sauce you want. we went for chicken, added some vegetables and noodles. then the girl that gave us the introduction started cooking for us. at first the meat was cooked, later when half the meat was already eaten, she added noodles and water. then noodles and meat was removed from the wok and again water was added together with the vegetables we chose. so we ended up with an awesome soup. all the stages gave us great and delicious food, and also all the waiters were friendly and curious - we think they do not get that many tourists in the restaurant (and in taiwan too we assumed).
tomorrow we will go for some other hostel, as the room was not that great this time. track: day 02

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