Sunday, July 6, 2008
just waiting 'til the shine wears off
this is my new cell phone. it has chinese on the buttons! click on the picture to see a bigger version of it.
this is my room as of yesterday. mom sent me a care package and it had pictures in it so i taped them up right behind where my computer usually is. dad sent me an ethernet cable extension plug thing so now i can use my laptop from my bed! which is where i am now.
let's start with yesterday. i had class at 10 downstairs. there was a kid in the class, kevin, who couldn't keep himself from shouting out the answer before anyone else could. it was driving me crazy. i had to ask him to stop answering questions after a bit. i talked to matt later that day and he said i probably should have had him count to 10 and then if no one else answered, let him answer. that would have been a better strategy.
saturday afternoon i didn't do much of anything other than hang around in the dorm and do my lesson plans for the evening. i chatted with dena and serena for a while about random things. that evening i taught my faaavorite substitute class of highschoolers. i subbed for them last week and then this was my last week. they were a lot of fun. there was a QA about what your ideal husband/wife would be like and they were trying to set me up with their regular teacher, michael. we played spoons again. i'm going to miss that class. i did exchange numbers with the co-teacher, christine. she's a lot of fun.
actually saturday after class, keith picked me up and we scooted to gill and kat's apartment for a little party they were having and christine was there. a lot of the co-teachers were there. everyone was dancing and talking. i talked to beth's boyfriend, rob, for a looong time about how many countries he's been to/lived in, what it does for him, what he wants to do when he's done traveling, etc. his dad is a landscape architect just like my majjy so we talked about that for a while. it was a really good night. emil kept dancing all around me because he could tell i was uncomfortable, but it was alright. i just don't like dancing, what can i say.
today i woke up relatively early (9am) to shower and go to taipei with dena, natalie and alan. dena wanted to see Longshan temple
i think it's one of the biggest temples in taipei. there were people all over the place with incense sticks that they were putting into giant golden containers and then they would pray for a few minutes. there were also big tables set up where you could leave food to be blessed while you pray and then you pick it up before you leave. the temple was decorated so ornately, it was amazing. there were really detailed carvings all over the top of it painted in really bright colors. it must have taken decades to make all of them.
natalie and i in front of the waterfall at longshan temple
after longshan, we got on the MRT (subway) and took a train out to a town called Danshui
where alan and natalie had been last week. it's a harbor town and there's a view of the mountains and the water and it's pretty. the water cools it off a lot.
we walked along the waterfront where there was a big market with all kinds of food vendors and stores full of trinkets. we had giiiant ice cream cones that cost 10NT which is about 30 cents. they were refreshing in the heat. and we went in this funny shop with all kinds of miniature things. i bought some earrings, pictured below. i have yellow shoes and a yellow skirt and i couldn't help myself. i think they're hilarious. they were $1.33 and well worth it.
what else.. everyone had barbequed (im using that term loosely) squid for lunch. everyone except me. i tried a bite of dena's and it was gross. i just don't like squid. it's really thick and chewy. it's like chewing on a giant piece of the biggest, scariest calamari you can imagine. i did have a corndog though. it was pretty good. it was SOOO hot outside today and even more humid. i was dripping with sweat the entire time. but once you get home and shower, you forget all about how disgusting you felt all day.
on the way home, i was eating a worther's candy on the MRT and this woman across from me told me 'no eating anything!' and i said oh i'm sorry i didn't know. the woman beside me mentioned how you can't even drink water and that's why the subways are so clean in taipei. i apologized to the woman beside me because she seemed really shaken up about it and we started chatting. her name is evelyne and she's from taipei. she exports computer accessories to america so she goes to las vegas every year. her english is really fantastic so it was easy to talk to her. i told her all about taoyuan and what i'm doing there, how i got there.. we discussed the differences in food in the US and asia and how they like everything to be hot here because they think it disinfects it. she said she hates american food. she told me a story about staying in a hotel in orlando once and there was a japanese restaurant and an american one and she chose the japanese one, even though she didn't used to like japanese food, just to avoid the american one. we were laughing the whole time we were talking, it was fun. anyway evelyne and i exchanged numbers and i'm going to call her next time i'm in taipei.
so it was a nice day. i have a headache and a mild sunburn, but i had a cup of tea and i feel better. dena did some reflexology stuff to me and it did help, but i still feel kind of bad. she showed me a pressure point in my foot that's supposed to help though. i felt weirddd pinging sensations when she touched it. but i need to go to bed now.
i uploaded all of the new pictures from today to facebook
you can look at them by copying and pasting this link: