Okay, so here’re some notes from my week in Taiwan:
1. I flew (four hours) from Seoul to Taipei and spent the night there. The next day I took a bus (four-and-a-half hours) down to Kaohsiung. (For those of you who don’t know, I taught English there last year.)
3. The photos I’ve linked to above were taken at a restaurant at which I spent a lot of time during my year in Taiwan: a joint near our apartments run by the husband-wife duo of Gin-long and Mama.
Not long after I left Kaohsiung, Gin-long had a massive stroke and nearly died. He’s no longer able to do the cooking, his vision is impaired, and he doesn’t move with his former grace. (He also no longer drinks whiskey, smokes Mild 7 cigarettes, and chews betel nut.)
We all went to the restaurant one night, and when Gin-long arrived, I was afraid he wouldn’t recognize me. But he did, immediately. And after talking for a while (we communicate with a combination of my very poor Chinese and his decent English) and posing for silly photographs, he headed for the door to go back home. As he did so, he put his hand on my shoulder and said “you come, me happy.”
4. I was delighted to have a chance to catch up with my friends from my old soccer team, the 100 Pacers. In fact, I stayed a few night with my buddy Rob Jr. in Pingdong, a town not far from Kaohsiung. We ate some excellent night market food, came across a poster featuring some fantastic Chinglish, and met Guy, a fellow Pacer, for more delicious food. (For more Taiwan pics, here’s my photoset for my week there.)
5. And now I’m in Thailand. And we’re all caught up. Next up: I’ll detail just what, exactly, I’ve been up to here in Bangkok for the past few days.