大家好！(Dàjiā hǎo!)Hello Everyone!
|Upon Elephant Mountain and gazing at Tapei 101 at sundown :)|
I currently dorm at the Shui Yuan dorms (C; mixed gender with certain floors for boys and others for girls) a little outside National Taiwan University. It's a decent place that's clean and has internet (though the wifi is quite bad :( ). I also got a roommate from Hong Kong! He's a nice guy and I am glad they roomed us together because it's great to be with another Cantonese speaker (hearing and speaking it, reminds me of my parents).
The best thing about the dorm however is its diversity. Every where I go, there are local Taiwanese students, mainland Chinese students, Germans, French, Dutch, Spanish, Japanese, Koreans, and other nationalities. An interesting fact: NTU has about 432 international exchanges students from 28 different countries, and representing 149 universities. If you don't believe me check out their site: http://www.oia.ntu.edu.tw/students/incoming.students.list/year/104
Speaking of other nationalities, I forgot to mention that many of my classmates and fellow dormmates can speak Mandarin really well!!! It's not rare to see westerners speak Chinese to each other or see Koreans and Japanese speak Chinese like they have been speaking it like forever. I guess I should not be surprise, NTU is after all, the so called "Harvard of Taiwan." It makes sense that it will draw top students from around the world to study here.
As for my travels in Taiwan, so far I have been in the North and exploring Taipei to the fullest. I have been to neighboring towns like Kee Lung, Jiu Fen, Shi Fen, Mao Kong, and Wu Lai. I hope I can explore the Southern cities more later, and even see the north and east coast beaches of Taiwan (can they compete with Hawaii?). I still have plenty more to see.
|At the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial. Here is a memorial dedicated to the former leader of the Republic of China between 1928 and 1975|
|At the Presidential Building|
|Taiwan is quite the modern city. There are subways (MRT), High Speed Rail, Taxi, and Buses|
|At the Martyrs' Shrine|
|A Taiwanese Loco Moco?|
|My ride in Taiwan!!! I got him for only $400 NTD (about $12.50 USD)|
|In front of National Palace Museum (the "Louvre of Taiwan"|
|Just Chilling in a Hot Spring (41 degrees Celsius) no big deal....|
|In Jiu Fen, the almost Japanese-like old mining town that was said to inspire settings in the movie, "Spirited Away."|
|Some Taiwanese Shave Ice :P|
|Got here just in time for the boat ride|
|An aborigine village in Wu Lai (after Taiwan's recent Typhoon)|
|Some Coffee while you wait?|
|At Shi Fen. A waterfall fit for Nymphs and Mermaids!|
|Flying my first sky lantern with my Taiwanese friend|
|If you want to fly lanterns, Pingxi and Shifen are the places to go! Hop on board!|
|At the Taipei Zoo. I saw Pandas! (I do mean actually ones!!) |
That's all for now. Stay tuned for more!!