[This post is done as part of GaCoWriMo, my own personal twist to NaNoWriMo. It is also part of my FFF: Friday Favourite Five series. It is also in my Countdown to Taiwan series.]
Seven years ago, I visited Taipei for my poly graduation trip and loved the place, the trip topping the list of places I’ve been to. With my revisit coming up next week, I thought it would be a good time to remember what I loved about Taipei the first time round. During my first trip, I loved…
- The food: Taipei is a food haven – perhaps even more so than Singapore since the food is generally cheaper – and I’m pretty sure I doubled my body weight in my week there. I mean, I gorged myself silly on KFC egg tarts every morning and 滷肉飯 (braised pork rice) every night, not to mention all the frequent snack stops and night market traipsing. After all, what’s not to like about varied, cheap, abundant good food? Check out the five foods I’m most excited to try this time round.
- The scenery: It’s true that Taipei itself is pretty metropolitan but one doesn’t have to venture very far out to enjoy amazing sights. I remember loving the expansive, mountaintop view at 九份 and this time round I’m also going to 十分 and 陽明山, both famed for their gorgeous scenery.
- The shopping: the shopping, oh the shopping. There are so many places there to shop at, even for guys. I remember getting a pair of Adidas shoes (then the rage) for about 60% of the price it cost here. While it might be wintry there now and the clothing choices might be more impractical to buy for sunny Singapore, I’m sure there’s a whole ton of bags, accessories and little knick knacks I could still get.
- The people: coming from a place where peak hour public transport means maneuvering through a sea of inconsideration and rudeness and where shop assistants are more often than not grumpy and unhelpful, Taipei was a bit of a culture shock. Random people on the street would stop to help us if we looked lost, everyone was orderly and calm on public transport, and the shopkeepers we met were uniformly friendly and accommodating to a fault, even in the most random of location.
- The weather: granted, Taipei faces a whole range of weather conditions through the year like many countries, but it was pretty cool the last time we went and it was awesome walking around in what felt like air-conditioned streets. This time round, it looks to be even colder, which is exciting. I just hope it won’t be too rainy.
I know it won’t be exactly the same experience this time around, and I might well encounter the opposite to some of what I’ve listed above but here’s hoping that I’ll just end up with more good memories to add to my mental diary.
Dear reader, have you been to Taiwan? What did you like about the place?