Every so often I see a picture like one of these two. Both show the percentage of people in each state that have a valid passport. They are usually followed by comments that make a moral judgment about having or not having a passport and about how can Americans not travel. Proving once again that people are bad at Geography.
A new animal farm complete with a restaurant opened up in Hualien. Hua-Dong Farm (華東牧場) is located near the Hualien fishing port and is a great place to see animals and eat. The place is actually hard to find. I rode past it the first time on my bike. You have to keep your eyes open for a small road/ driveway on the west side of Gang Kou road. After turning down the driveway you can park and walk to see the farm. …
Xitou Monster Village in Nantou is a family-friendly tourist trap. That is the best sentence I can sum it up with. The monster themed village gets over 200,000 visitors each month so they are doing something right. I am sure it also helps keep the hotel busy. Either way, it makes a great stop for an hour or two. Fortunately, it was just a short walk from the hotel we were staying in.
The best part of the village is the show, at night (7PM/ 1900). The best part of that show is the drumming. After that, it becomes a children show complete with mascots and that monster watch song. That catchy song gets stuck in your head just like Let it Go and won’t go away.
I use to know a red headed Irish man. When he got drunk he use to do a Ron Weasley impression
“Harry Potters fuckin my Sister” he would yell. “He using his wand on her chamber of secrets”
Ok, that story has nothing to do with the article but it is funny. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone just had its 20th anniversary, as it seems you could not escape hearing again and again. Even worse is the inability to escape politics in the USA and the UK being compared to Harry Potter.
We were at Chishingtan Beach and wanted to find a place to eat. We asked at the Family Mart if there were any restaurants near us. She told us about a restaurant called Mu Ming. The clerk told us the restaurant did not have a menu “does not have a menu”. Well, that caught my attention. So off through the streets, we set off to find a restaurant with no menu.
On my June visit to Taipei, I went to Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall. Completed in 1980 as a memorial to the former leader of the Republic of China it is still a popular tourist destination. With the change in views of Chiang Kai-shek, feelings and the impressions of the hall have shifted. The open area is now known as Liberty Square and this year the government has announced the Hall will be changed to face “history, recognizing agony, and respecting human rights.”
Once again I visited Taipei. This time I stayed near Ximan at a hotel called Cheers Hotel. It is located near Ximan’s market an area with lots of bars, restaurants, and movie theaters around it. The Red House used to be a market built in the Japanese days. Now it is a theater and has a large gay business community around it. I visited the remains of Nishi Honganji. Nishi Honganji used to be the largest Japanese-style Buddhist temple in Taiwan. Then I went to Chang Kai-shek Memorial Hall but that is its own post. Later I went to play darts and got a drink. It turns out that I am still bad at darts. And by drink, I mean absinthe served in a skull shot glass.
It was not the best of weekends. Like many weekends in Hualien, it was raining and cloudy. As a rule of thumb it is nice and sunny when I am at work, and today it is raining when I am not. Undeterred we took a scooter up into the mountains to try Sun-Shine Mountain Tea Shop that I have wanted to visit for a long time. The first part of my interest is of course tea. The second part was what the view would be. So up the mountain, for a warm cup of tea we went.
One day after waking up early I decided to go for a walk. Off to Liyu Lake, I went. Liyu Lake is in Shoufeng, Hualien. Liyu in English means carp and is also the name of the mountain next to it. In addition, it is a great place to walk and you can see a variety of insects, lizards, birds, and sometimes monkeys.