Our last Taiwan Adventure...

Trip Start Aug 24, 2010
Trip End Sep 01, 2011

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Flag of Taiwan  ,
Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Pack?? But...we still have a whole day left!...Let's go to Taroko for the day!

It always sounds like a good idea...until we run out of time to pack! The weather was nice for a change, so we hopped on the scooter and headed to Taroko Gorge...a definite "must see" in Taiwan! We'd been there before, but never on a scooter! We arrived early morning, so the tour buses were not yet around, leaving the road strictly to us and our scooter! We stopped at a few trails, found Bruwan (a beautiful hotel and restaurant at the top of a mountain), and ate a wonderful lunch...the HOTTEST peppers we have ever had! The menu said "skinned green peppers with soya sauce"....sounds interesting, so we ordered it. We didn't understand why the waiter chuckled...until we tried them! Oh my! They were sooo hot...thankfully, we had ordered a hot and sour dumplings...which was actually the best soup we have ever had!!! It helped to sooth the burning and tearing of the esophagus! lol. After lunch, we continued on our adventure, ending in the cute little town of Tienshiang. It was already late afternoon, and we didn't want to attempt the mountainous roads in the dark, rain, and tour bus infestation, so we turned around and headed back. 

Our last day in Taiwan was spent packing, eating, and trying to mail our books home! We actually arrived at the train station 45 minutes before our train...yes...that's right...I said 45 minutes BEFORE our train left! haha...so we had some down time while we waited. Finally boarding the train at 7:07pm, we took the 2 and a half hour ride to Taipei, struggled to find the Taipei bus station (right across the street), hopped on the airport bus (125nt), rode it for an hour to the airport, arrived at 11pm, eventually found the check in station, and waited in line. And kept waiting in line...lol...for about 45 minutes!! So it is now about 11:45pm...yes, at night...and we try to check in...this is what I heard: "Mam, can I please see your return ticket out of the Philippines?"...umm....return ticket?? Is this a joke?...the website said Canadians can enter for 21 days...nothing about a return ticket!! So here we are, 11:45pm, we have one hour before the check in counter closes and we need to find a ticket out of the Philippines before they will let us enter!! We weren't the only ones who were surprised with this...there were three other couples who didn't have return tickets and two who couldn't check in because their passports expired 5 months from now, not 6 months...even though they had return tickets and were only going for the weekend! haha. So here we are, searching the internet for a flight out of the Philippines, preferably to Indonesia. We eventually found one, booked it, brought the computer to the clerk to show him, and they let us check in...."Sorry Sir, your bag is too heavy."...What?? Ugh, so after all this, we have to rearrange the bags to even them out! Finally, checked in and at the boarding gate...exhausted, but there...lol. In all this kerfluffle, we realized we forgot to advise our Philippine friend which hotel to pick us up at....sigh...lol.

So, Goodbye to awesome food, singing garbage trucks, fighter jets, grapefruit green tea, and special chicken sandwiches....Taiwan, we will miss you!
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