Hello from Taipei!
Spent a rough first night at my hostel in the Taipei Artist Village. It is in a great location, for a great price, but few amenities. The room is large, but the bathroom is down the hall and around the corner, while the shower is downstairs. My main issue last night were the mosquitos. Which will be even worse down south I hear, I wonder if I should invest in a mosquito net.
So with little sleep last night, I fear that I am still caught up in Jet Lag, so plan to take it easy today while I prepare for a visit to the National Taiwan Museum on Sunday, then to a tea plantation on monday and maybe a hot Springs, give a lecture and visit galleries on tuesday, and then visit the granddaddy of museums here the National Palace Museum. On thursday I leave for the installation site down South in Cheng-Long.
I spent a long lovely first full day in Taiwan with my host Andy and his daughter who drove me into Taipei to the Artist Village and took me to a very traditional Taiwanese lunch at the nearby main train station. Then met up with Jane the curator for the exhibition with her husband, two other artists and a friend of their’s who is an environmental educator for a chat over tea and coffee and then a dinner at a dim sum place that was purported to sell more vegetarian dishes, but unfortunately, the use of pork is so ubiquitous that they did not even mention that it was in the vegetable shumai.
I was beginning to fade by around 8:00, and fell asleep by 9:30, but alas the buzz buzz buzz of the mosquitos woke me at 12:30 am, and then I went in and out of sleep for the rest of the night. I finally gave into waking up at dawn when the birds started to chirp outside (thankfully the room is very quiet otherwise.) But when I tried to go out to get some breakfast so early on a Saturday would you believe it that the only places open for business where the American fast food chains of MacDonalds, Burger King and Starbucks. Oy!
Well lets see how the day goes. It is starting the rain again. It has rained everyday since my arrival. If it stops later, I might try and go north to a nearby hot spring.
Attached are images of my welcoming host Andy and his daughter, a nearby manhole cover and the banyan tree outside my window.