The meetup group
Today was the day of our meet-up, but before the meet-up we had scheduled a visit to the National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall and also to one of Taipei’s Temples. We took the MRT (Taipei’s transit) into the city where I purchased my MRT card. I sort of felt like a local now with my very own transit card! Ha-ha! The transit here reminds me a lot of Czech Republic, but I think easier to use. We had breakfast at Grandma Nitti’s Kitchen for a western breakfast of pancakes, eggs, and bacon. The locals must like western food, I gathered. It was packed on this Saturday morning, and we were the only westerners in there.
It was an interesting stroll down the side streets…they are so narrow here! And you have to be alert for the scooters flying all around you.
You have to be real alert to find a store that sells postcards, too! I was searching desperately for postcards since I arrived, and I think the only other place in the world it is harder to find postcards is in Africa!
Brett and Erin's apartment building
We caught the MRT again to get us to the Memorial Hall. The memorial is for their late President who set into motion Taiwan’s recovery plan that has made the nation what it is today. How can I describe this place, better to look at the pictures! Some of the exhibits included paintings, his two original Cadillacs, and a wax figure of the president in his original office that was transferred from the presidential building. But the most important thing I found here…was a gift shop with postcards!!!!! The other notable thing to mention was the changing of the guards, which we were able to watch in its entirety.
Just as were prepared to leave, the rains began to fall…and fall…and fall.
The front perimeter of the Memorial Hall has a covered walkway along the street, and we ended up hunkering under there for the better part of an hour getting entertained by a rare bird feasting on frogs as the monsoon rains passed by. Finally, just when we thought it was clearing, we caught a taxi to take us to the temple. But on the way there, the rains were falling again. Luckily, Brett brought us 3 umbrellas. I was anxious to finally see one of Asia’s famed temples; although I felt a like we were intruding as the worshippers inside bowed before the statue of Buddha.
After a short visit at the temple we hopped back in a taxi for the Yuma, our meet-up location. The Yuma is a southwestern bar and grill, and the margaritas were sounding really good by the time we arrived. We were the first there and ordered a pitcher and some appetizers.
We actually had more non-TB guests come than TBs. Two of Brett’s co-workers joined us. Ann (Ak1215) also came and brought her friend Albert. She also had another friend stop by, but he was there for such a short time that I can’t remember his name. Michael (Marvin5) who is originally from the Philippines was there, but Sharon (Sharonissocool) couldn’t make it.
Buying myself an MRT card
We ended the evening with a visit to a shaved ice restaurant…someone else will have to explain this place! Haha I didn’t care too much for the stuff and I couldn’t begin to tell you what was in this dessert besides the ice. When we got back to the apartment later in the night we started up with the tequila shots again! So it seemed to be a tequila theme. The nest day I would be flying to Kuala Lumpur to meet with Bennie and Ket, and after I mentioned that we were staying in a hostel Brett decided to pop in a DVD movie to watch….”Hostel”!