Wednesday, August 14, 2002

Trains in taiwan


So today we went to Keelung (which is really pronounced Gee-lung). "We" meaning Katherine, Vince and me. We took the really, really slow train up from Hsinchu, through Taipei and finally to Geelung. We left at 9:40 am and got there at 12:20 pm. There we met two nice women, one who won a fellowship to travel to the US and that's how Katherine met her and the other is a freelance arts manager who can speak excellent English and could do some translation for us. We quickly had lunch from a fast-food joint because we were running a bit behind schedule. I had a pita filled with cheese, broccoli and chicken and we listened to Katherine's friend give a lecture to 100 junior high school students at the Oceanic University located in the city. The students were pretty bored, she had to bribe them with little gifts to get them to answer questions about marine life around Taiwan. Then came the fun part! We all loaded onto buses to go to the dock (all 103 of us) and got into boats which took us to a beautiful island in the bay of Keelung. We walked around the island a little bit, the sun was so bright and beautiful, it was fabulous! The weather was so nice and the air and water so clean, Keelung has become my favorite Taiwan city. There was a little cave in the island that had been turned into a makeshift temple; full of figures, inscense, candles and offerings. Afterwards, we headed back to Keelung on the boats and on the way back, the wind was very strong, all the junior high school kids loved it! All along the handrails, the kids leaned into the wind and tried to get wet from the waves. Then we had a late afternoon snack with our hosts at a hotel overlooking the harbor and started on the long trip back to Hsinchu on a bus. Vince was great today, very happy. He even sat in a high chair for dinner. Here is a picture of him taking a bath!

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