Sunday, January 17, 2010

Taiwan Revisited, Part I

For those of you not in the know, I spent 10 days in Taiwan for Part I of my winter vacation. While I was unable to blog effectively on site, I will revisit my travels here with the help of my photolog (available in its complete form here ) and the (edited) e-mails I sent to Terry detailing my expedition. Here goes:


Dear Terry,

After a number of planes, trains and automobiles I have finally arrived in not-so-sunny Taipei. So far I would have to say the most unsettling thing about Taiwan is that no one here speaks Korean. I mean, I guess any rational person would have taken that for granted but even knowing it was going to be so I find myself always wanting to use my Korean and then feeling very silly about it.

We're sitting in our hostel right now waiting for the lady who runs it to come back and check us in. I'm typing to you on a keyboard that has at least four languges on each key. The board is also really resistant so I have to hammer each keystroke in--which is why this e-mail might contain a higher incidence of typos then usual.
((Editor's note: not anymore. ))

I've seen very little of the city so far but there seem to be a high incidence of clausterphobically small alleys, open trashcan fires and burning incense. Also the smells are more poweful, alternating between delicious spicy food smells and less enticing open-sewer smells. I am pretty excited about taking my camera out and taking some photos. I've already glimpst enough strange things to make an intriguing photo essay.

I'm still painfully sore. ((editor's note: I had tried snowboarding for the first time since middleschool the day before I left and fell down... a lot)) Moving around is unpleasant and feels overly physical. On the bright side, I took a really hot shower this morning in Seoul and that helped a little. Before that I was having trouble even getting out of bed.

As might be expected, I packed way too much and am already regretting it. My rolling bag is extremely unpleasant to be lugging about. On the bright side, I have some pretty dresses I can look forward to wearing. ((Editor's Note: yeah, never wore those.))

I miss you, and I wish you were here to share this with me. I'll try to keep you updated as much as possible. Happy New Year, my love.


I'll post more letters soon, but meanwhile, do check out that Flickr page (linked above) which contain many pleasures unspoken of here such as:

Unidentifiable Street Food!


Exploding National Sites!


Soups Served in Toilets!


Aaand Funny Hats!


Until next time!


  1. Sophie:

    I can't imagine being as courageous as you are in tackling this global adventure. A bit of your mother shines thru !! You have such a wonderful gift of the written word and a great sense of humor. Be well !! Uncle Chikk

  2. Thank you! It makes me happy to know you're reading.