…Or, how I ate my way through Taipei in five days and lived to tell the tale. (Part 1 of several parts)
Entrance to Keelung Miaokou Night Market. Taiwan is crazy with night markets and they’re fabulous places to eat, drink, eat, shop, eat, meet friends… and eat
This was a company-sponsored bonding trip that happened mid-2013. Yes, a bit late to be posting it now more than a year later, but you know how it is — sometimes things just pile up! So Taiwan. Had to admit, it’s not on my travel bucket list (I don’t really have an actual list; but when pressed on where to go, I can name a few places) — in fact, it’s not even top of mind of places that I would consider visiting. Blame a friend’s comments more than a decade or so ago when she was on a business trip to Taipei and had a miserable time of it because ordinary people didn’t speak English and there were not enough signages in English to make your way around on your own. But since then, had heard great things about Taipei and Taiwan in general, so when the office went for a trip there, I was excited. Who wouldn’t be, when it was practically a free trip to go gallivanting?
“Well, I’m back.” — Samwise Gamgee, after seeing off Frodo, Bilbo and the elves to the Grey Havens
The neighbors’ house as seen from our porch. This is what I miss about home — the greenery! I’m surrounded by greenery in Singapore as well, but it’s different at home because it isn’t… tamed. Shrubs and plants and trees are allowed to grow where they must.
Was trawling through my phone’s camera roll, and found myself smiling at some of the pictures of my Christmas break at home. I didn’t really take a lot of photos because well, vegging out to me means forgetting about the world outside for awhile, disengaging and just letting provincial life take over…
Old-style bumboat looking picturesque in Sekupang harbour, Batam
What do you do when you want a change of pace from the usual malling/cafe/bar scene that characterize how most of Singapore’s population (locals and otherwise) spend their free time? You head out of the city for one of the islands in Malaysia and Indonesia accessible by ferry from Singapore’s ferry terminal. Which is what we did yesterday — our own celebration of Labor Day.
Nothing spells summer than a fluorescent lime-with-cream-filling popsicle!
The Singapore Zoo is a must-see so whenever friends and family come over to visit and ask recommendations from me about where to go, I always mention the zoo. Last month, friends came over to visit and I accompanied them for a day at the zoo. Even though it can get tiring because the Singapore Zoo is huge — it’s 26 hectares (that’s a lot of walking!) — and walking around in the heat is no picnic, I like exploring the zoo during the day. It allows for more interaction with the animals. The Night Safari is a must-do as well. My advice: If you have time, the kids are with you and everyone is fit enough to walk around, then go spend the day in the zoo. It’s worth it.
It’s crowded. There are so many people in the small island that there’s even moderate vehicular traffic along the small main road behind the beachfront properties, which would have been unthinkable decades ago. And should that make you shake your head in disbelief, you can get some comfort from a cheeseburger in McDonald’s or a latte in Starbucks. Okay, time to pick up your jaw from the sand, Boracay-visitors-from-long-ago. Oh, let’s not forget the lumot (algae) that stain the clear waters particularly in the summer months when the tourists come in droves. With so many people jostling for a piece of this paradise, it’s easy to tell yourself, I won’t ever go back. I shouldn’t have gone back.