Free Day!

July 26, 2014

During training we received a much deserved day off on Saturday. Since a few of the teachers and I had gone out the night before I was sure that I would sleep in and rest like a baby, wrong! I woke up at around 8:00am, fell back asleep, and then decided to get up and eat breakfast around 9:30am-ish. I made no effort to look nice for breakfast so I got a few looks. I can only imagine their thoughts being something like, “is this woman okay?”. I was also wearing my “That Takes Ovaries” shirt so that might have been it as well, who knows. After breakfast I met up with Oliver and Alex to see what they wanted to do for the day. A group of us decided we wanted to check out the museum, so by 12:00noon we were out the door and ready to have a fun day. As usual it was hot, hot, hot. Instead of trying to walk 9 miles like our last free day we headed for the MRT. We saw a neat sculpture in the metro. It is always so interesting because you just find the most random things in parts of the MRT, and I often wonder, “why there?”.

Lotus in Heartful Hands

Lotus in Heartful Hands

Our first destination was a Taiwanese Museum that had different exhibits in it.

1. The Magic of Plants: this exhibit was definitely geared towards children, but it was so much fun. There were all these pictures, videos, and displays of how plants work.

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2. Taiwan Black Jade Exhibit: this exhibit was all about the history of jade in Taiwan, what it is, how it is created, and how you can tell the difference between different types of jade.

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3. The Crabs Exhibit: I did not like this one as much. I was in and out of that room very quickly. Although I did enjoy the Cancer mugs and items since I was born in June and my sign is a cancer.

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4. Islamic Culture Exhibit: I found this one very interesting, and also opened my eyes a little bit more to Islam and Muslim people in Taiwan.

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The museum left me pretty hungry so we made a random stop for food. We realized that we had an extra chunk of time until between the current time and the time we said we would meet up with more people at the night market, so we decided to go to the Gondola.

The Gondola just happened to be Hello Kitty themed currently, so everything we saw was Hello Kitty.

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For a little extra money we paid for an open bottom gondola ride, which was pretty much a glass floor instead of a metal one. Big Mistake! What was supposed to be a peaceful 30 minute ride ended up being the longest ride ever being that both Pasqualle and I are afraid of heights. The view did make up for it a little bit.

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We survived!

We survived!

At the top of the mountain/hill we went and got some green tea ice cream. Normally people take the gondola trip to get green tea, or just tea, but it was so hot that we decided against it.

Guan Ding Tea House

Guan Ding Tea House

Then we made the trip down the hill. This time we had a gondola cab that was a metal floor so Pasqualle and I were much calmer.

The trip was definitely worth the view

The trip was definitely worth the view

(I give complete photo credit to Alex and Oliver. They were actually brave enough to stand up in the Gondola and take pictures, whereas Pasqualle and I were not.)

Next we got back on the MRT to go to the Shilin Night Market. Now normally I get super pumped for night markets, but we made the mistake of going on a Saturday. There were sooo many people there. Just to walk was a difficult and slow task. But the best part about the night market was we saw a lot of good food. It seems to be the trend here that I do not know what I am eating, but damn it sure does taste good.

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Shilin Market Temple

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While our free day was supposed to be used to relax and catch up on sleep I don’t think we did any of that. But it was a great opportunity to see more of Taipei and spend more time with friends before we would be separated in a few days.