2017年12月15日 星期五

This Means War

It all began innocently enough.  The President of Taiwan was being interviewed by a reporter, when she referred to Mainland China's missile capability as "unimpressive."  No one thought anything of it at the time, but by the time the news filtered back to China it had become a BIG problem.

"What is she talking about?" the Chinese wondered aloud.  "Unimpressive?  Our missiles are unimpressive?  Why I'll have her know that our wives think our missiles are VERY impressive!  They're long, they're wide, and they're effective at close range!  Our wives and girlfriends say this every day!"

Tensions simmered across the Taiwan Strait for months afterward.  Of course the President of Taiwan offered an apology, implying that "bigger wasn't always better," but the Chinese were having none of it.  Their feelings were hurt, and they took every opportunity to insult Taiwan's President through the press.  "She doesn't know what she's talking about," they said, "China's missiles stand erect, and ready to meet any threat!"

By June of the following year, the Chinese had perfected the Long Dong, their newest long range missile.  The Long Dong was a projectile exceeding anything in Taiwan's arsenal, even the longer missiles sold to Taiwan by the Americans.  It stood proud and tall over the soldiers who presented it to the public, and cast a shadow all the way over the Taiwan Strait.  "Now that's a BIG missile!" said people in Taiwan, "...but how should we respond?  Should we build one even bigger?  We're sure not going down on our knees before that thing!"

The President of Taiwan convened an emergency meeting to discuss the situation.  "What are our options here?" she said to those assembled, "The Chinese Long Dong is indeed very formidable.  One might even say impressive!"

The Taiwanese generals talked it over, and in the end came up with a solution.  "We've got it!" they said, "We know what to do!  We'll sneak people into China to make fun of the Long Dong, and after that they'll be too embarrassed to use it!"

So a month later several Taiwanese saboteurs snuck into China as part of a trade conference, an official-type thing where they pretended to be "Chinese Taipei."  They checked into their hotel, they acted very businesslike, and in the dead of night they snuck away to the airbase where the Long Dong was kept, switching into Chinese military uniforms soon after.

The next day some of the Chinese generals came out to admire their newest missile.  The Long Dong stood high above them, straight and tall, and visible for miles around.  "Now that's one hell of a big missile," they congratulated each other, "Satisfyingly long, and seriously impressive."

Little did they know that a few of their number were not members of the Mainland military, but rather Taiwanese infiltrators.  "I'm not sure," said a voice from the back of the group.  Don't you think it looks kind of weird?"

The Chinese generals were taken aback at this slander, and turned to one another in disbelief.  "What?" one of them said, "Who said that?  What do you mean 'looks weird?'"

The Taiwanese saboteur who had spoken took a moment to respond, readying a cyanide pill in case his true identity was discovered.  "I'm just saying, you know, it looks kind of weird.  Not so much like a missile should look.  Kind of... unnatural, really.  More like something you would use - or buy - if your normal missile wasn't functioning properly."

"WHAT?!?!" the Chinese generals gasped, "But our wives say this missile is perfect!  They say it looks VERY natural!  How can you say this about the Long Dong?  It's the object of our national pride!  And now that I think about it, some of your faces are unfamiliar!  I think you might be Taiwanese spies!"

"That may well be," said the Taiwanese saboteurs, but your Long Dong still looks weird to us.  It's so unattractive!"

And with that the Taiwanese infiltrators swallowed their cyanide pills.  They all dropped dead seconds later.

Months of silence followed.  When asked about their newest missile, the Chinese military appeared very confident, but there seemed to be doubts as to its efficacy.  Certain members of the People's Liberation Army voiced concerns that the missile was "unnatural" or even "looked weird."  It was clear that the Mainland was putting a brave face on things, and that they still hadn't addressed the Taiwanese President's complaint that their missiles were "unimpressive."

Later still, a Cross-Strait Security Conference was convened in Malaysia.  Taiwan's President was in attendance, along with the senior members of China's government.  At a certain point the subject of missile capability came up, and the President of Taiwan was asked if she still thought China's missiles were "unimpressive."

"Well," she said, "The Long Dong is certainly BIG, but don't you guys think it looks kind of weird?"

The Mainland Chinese delegation erupted into chaos, and many people started shouting.  "You better shut your mouth!" one of the Chinese delegates said, "We'll show you!  This means war!"

The representatives from the People's Republic of China emphasized their threat by storming out of the conference, leaving the Taiwanese delegates understandably confused.  The Taiwanese President was speechless, but she regained her composure after her aides assured her that all would be well, and that they had nothing to worry about.

"But what do you mean?" she said, "That missile will kill thousands!"

"Trust us," her aides assured her, "Everything will be fine."

The President and her team returned to Taiwan.  Newspapers on the island predicted a catastrophic military response from the Chinese, and the Taiwanese public grew very worried.

The Chinese, meanwhile, were readying the Long Dong for launch.  Taipei was their obvious target, and the Mainland generals gloated over the revenge that would soon be theirs.  "Unimpressive?  Ha, what did she know!  Weird-looking?  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

"Yes," they said among themselves, "This will fix them good!"

But as they stood there, behind their bunker walls, they couldn't help but take a closer look at the Long Dong.  Some, even then, whispered that it might not be impressive enough to prove China's missile capability.  Some, even then, whispered that it did indeed look weird.  And why was it taking so long to get the missile ready?  Wasn't Taiwan just asking for it?  Shouldn't the Long Dong have been ready, long ago?

The generals asked the technicians to hurry, and in their haste they entered the wrong launch codes, so that the Long Dong took flight prematurely.  They watched as their missile sailed away at the wrong angle, headed for who knew where.

"It's not our fault," the technicians said, "We were too excited, and we've been really stressed from work.  We've got all these things on our minds you know... and we really could have used some encouragement.  Not so much pressure.  We're only men, after all."

Homing in on the wrong coordinates, the Long Dong flew directly into the Taiwan Strait.  China's much-lauded projectile didn't even detonate.  The Taiwanese military, who'd been following the entire thing via satellites, raised a collective cheer.  

At the same time the generals in China could only hang their heads in shame.  It seemed to them that the President of Taiwan had been right after all.  Their missile capability really had been unimpressive, and the Long Dong had been a weird-looking failure.  Sure, they had plenty of other missiles to launch, but after that failed first attempt they just weren't in the mood.

"Don't worry about it too much," the President of Taiwan told her counterpart in Beijing over the phone.  "A lot of countries have this problem.  You just need to relax next time.  And we can always talk things out, you know?  

"Having a big missile is great, but it's not the only thing.  In any relationship, personal or political, communication is important, too."

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台灣西方文明初體驗 The Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan (2 of 4)

2017年12月13日 星期三

My First Time on Taiwanese TV

1999.  Man, that was a while ago.  I was just off the plane from the States, I was a few weeks into my first teaching job in Taiwan, and I was acclimating to the island in general.

At that time I spoke maybe four words in Chinese: xie xie (thanks) and ni hao (hello).  I could also recognize the characters for "beef," "chicken," "pork," "noodles," and "rice" from local restaurants.  That was about it.

I had a girlfriend named Catherine.  I met her in a bar in Taichung, where I was living, and if it wasn't love, at least it was lust at first sight.  It was that kind of intense affair that young Taiwanese girls have without the approval of their parents, and I was about as emotionally uninvolved as it was possible to be.  

At one point Catherine got tickets (she was invited?) to sit in the audience for a TV show.  To this day I have no idea what the name of the show was.  The host was that curly-haired man with the beard, and several other Taiwanese celebrities who I'd probably now recognize if I could only recall what they looked like then.  It was one of those forgettable variety/game shows, where people talk endlessly, sing songs, and make (bad) puns in Taiwanese.

Catherine asked if I wanted to attend the taping with her.  I said "Sure," not really having any idea what I was in for.  I don't even know if I'd seen any Taiwanese TV shows at the time.  We had no television in the apartment where I lived, and aside from that apartment, the school where I worked, the 7-11, and a handful of restaurants I really hadn't been anywhere.

A week or so later we were on a bus headed to Taipei.  The bus took us straight to the TV studio where the show was being taped, and I assume that Catherine bought the ticket (was invited?) as part of a much larger group.  Soon after we were sitting inside a studio, in the midst of hundreds of other people, and the two hosts of the show were talking on the stage beneath us.  Catherine said they were talking about me, but what they said she never told me.  "Keep smiling," she said, "Look happy."

In case you've never been inside a Taiwanese TV studio, let me tell you that they look a lot worse in real life.  On television the shows look very shiny and new, but when you're in the studio you quickly realize how much mileage those studios have on them, and how many programs are filmed in the same space.  From the bleachers I could see how cheaply constructed everything was, and how the paint was peeling off some of the walls.  When filming a TV show, of course, they're only concerned about one or two angles, and if the imperfections in a set don't show up in those one or two angles they're overlooked altogether.

It was also really hot.  The lights had me sweating within minutes, and I began to realize what an act of endurance hosting a TV show must be.  Wearing a suit and standing beneath those lights without sweating your makeup off wouldn't be easy. 

The show continued on, and an hour or so later it was done.  On our way out Catherine told me that we were invited to meet the hosts backstage, and a stagehand led us to where various stars were having their makeup removed.  

I had a short conversation with a man I later saw on many other shows.  I also said "hello" to the curly-headed man, though he seemed more preoccupied with his twenty-something girlfriend.  The celebrity I talked with spoke perfect English, and mentioned that he'd gone to school in Canada.

After returning to Taichung, a lot of coworkers told me they'd seen me on TV.  They said I looked good, even though I was sweating like a bastard at the time.  I figured that if I'd managed to look "happy" through an hour of not understanding what the f*ck anyone was saying I'd done a pretty good job.

Catherine and I broke up a month or so later.  If she's somehow reading this (it's possible), I'm sorry for being such a dick at that party, but I knew your parents were never going to be ok with me.  Besides that, I was already dating someone else by then.  Just the same, thanks for inviting me to be on the TV show.  I can't say it was entirely pleasant, but it was an interesting experience nonetheless.

I've been on TV (and in the newspaper) a few times since, but it was always work-related, and never particularly memorable.  Being a foreigner and showing up on TV happens sometimes, and often for the most random reasons.  I've known foreigners who try to be on TV as much as possible - some for money, some for the fleeting sense of fame it offers - but that whole endeavor can get pretty silly.  Taiwanese people - through the media - are always aggrandizing foreigners for their own reasons, and one can't take too much credit for being the one foreign person within easy reach of a reporter, television executive, or aspiring politician.

Still, being on TV can be fun.  If you have the chance, and you can do it without compromising yourself too much, I'd recommend it.  If, however, they're asking you to ham it up, act "foreign," and otherwise conform to stereotypes I'd give it a hard pass.

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2017年12月11日 星期一

台灣西方文明初體驗 The Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan (4 of 4)

The information below was taken from 台灣西方文明初體驗 ("The Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan").  The Chinese was written by Chen Rou-jing, and the English was written/translated from the Chinese by me.  以下的內容來自台灣文明初體驗這本書.  下列中文的部分是從陳柔縉作者的書裡節錄的.  英文的部分則是我寫的.

輪船 Ships

快一百年前, 台中清水海邊長大的少年說他 "對於海是司空見慣的, 並不稀罕, 可是浮在海上的東西, 以前曾經見過的卻只有漁民用來打魚的竹筏而已."  在學校, 岡村校長卻跟他說起 "輪船" 這種新鮮名詞, 他很驚疑; "據說輪船比我們的房屋還大, 這麼大的東西, 怎麼能浮在海上走呢?"  有一天, 他就要前往東京留學, 他將看見校長口中神奇的 "輪船", 行前疑惑還在心裡反覆: "這麼大的一座城, 怎樣能弄到海裡呢?"  "鐵造的城怎能浮在海上?"  Almost a hundred years ago, a young person who'd grown up in Chingshui, Taichung County said, "I don't see the ocean often, but when I do, the only things I see floating upon it are the bamboo rafts used by fishermen."  In school1 his principal told him about "ships," a word he hadn't heard before.  In amazement he said, "I hear that ships are bigger than our houses!  How can anything so big float upon the ocean?"  Then, one day, he went to Tokyo to study abroad, and he finally saw the miraculous "ships" his principal had spoken of.  Prior to embarking on his trip he still expressed doubts, however.  "How can something as large as a city move upon the sea?  How can such an 'iron city' float?"

這位清水少年楊肇嘉 (一八九二年生, 戰後曾任台灣省民政廳長), 一九0八年, 在基隆港見到輪船那一天, "巨輪" 果真把他 "嚇了一大跳".  一九二0年, 輪船依然教宜蘭少年陳逸松 (一九0七年生, 日本時代的台北市會員, 戰後曾任考試委員) 目瞪口呆, 震驚不已.  十三歲第一次看到噴出黑煙的大黑船, 才知道船不只有木頭做的, 還有鐵皮做的; 以前的經驗, 只有房子燒了才會冒煙, "沒想到船有煙囪會冒煙".  This young person from Chingshui, Yang Jhao-jia (born in 1892, he later served as the Director of the Civil Affairs Office for Taiwan Province2 after the war) often spoke about how the "giant ship" he saw in Keelung in 1920 "really frightened him."  In 1920 Chen Yi-song, a young man from Yilan (born in 1907, he was a member of the Taipei City Council during the Japanese Imperial Administration, and member of the Examination Board after the war) was shocked and stunned by his experience aboard a ship.  At 13 years of age, seeing the black smoke spurt from the huge black vessel, he finally realized that ships weren't just made of wood, but also of iron sheeting.  Up until that time he thought that only burning houses emitted smoke.  "I didn't realize that ships had a chimney that released smoke."

十九世紀中期, "輪船" 更像巨人了, 每次現身都會把東方的國家和人民嚇到.  一八五三年, 美國的海軍艦隊開進東京灣, 強迫日本開放門戶, 讓船隻停泊和做生意.  熱熱的夏天七月, 以蒸汽機為動力的船, 逆風直溯東京灣, 還有那麼大的黑色鐵皮船殼, 叫日本人看得冷汗直流.  In the 19th century "ships" were really more like giants.  Every time people from Eastern nations saw them they were frightened.  In 1853 the American navy used "gunboat diplomacy" to force their way into Tokyo Bay, thus opening Japan to [Western] traders, and making it possible for Western ships to anchor there.  In a sweltering July an ironclad steamboat floated into Tokyo Bay, causing the people of Japan to break out in a cold sweat.

Ship visiting Taiwan in 1884.

中國的文學大師林語堂 (一八九五年生) 一生寫過無數英文著作, 介紹中國給西方.  他在八十自敍談到他和西方世界的第二次接獨, 媒介就是輪船.  "是我在石碼和廈門間的輪船上首度看到蒸汽引擎的運作.  我看得入迷, 目瞪口呆.  我來在學校看到一個活塞引擎的圖解, 才完全明白."  The Chinese man of letters Lin Yu-tang (born 1895) wrote many works in English which introduced China to the West.  In his "80 Essays" he talks about his second encounter with the Western world, when he came across a ship.  "It was in both Shr Yan and Xiamen that I first saw a ship, and witnessed the operation of a steam engine.  I was amazed by what I saw.  It was only after seeing a diagram of the steam engine's workings that I finally understood [how it worked]."

輪船和各國傳統船舶最大不同就是蒸汽引擎.  一七八九年, 瓦特發明蒸汽機, 隨即被運用到各種交通工具上.  蒸汽船發展上關鍵的起步在一八0七年, 美國人建造了最早稱為 "蒸汽船" 的克雷蒙特號.  蒸汽機推動船腰上的輪軸, 速度明顯超過傳統帆船.  一八五五年, 這種一小時走四英里 (約六公里半), 轉輪在船身兩側的 "外輪船", 荷蘭獻了一艘給日本德川幕府, 命名為 "觀光丸", 成為日本最早的汽船.  The biggest difference between (steam)ships3 and the traditional types of boats used throughout the world was the steam engine.  In 1789 Watt invented the steam engine, and this discovery was soon used in a number of vehicles.  Steam ships weren't developed until 1807, when the Americans built the Claymont, the first steamship.  The steam engine turned an axle in the belly of the ship, allowing the ship to sail faster than traditional boats.  By 1855 ships could travel four miles per hour (about 6.5 km), and [the axle could turn] the two wheels set on either side of a paddle steamer.  The Dutch gave one of these boats to the Tokugawa Shogunate, [which they] named "Hikarimaru."  This became the first steamship in Japanese history.

清代台灣的茶, 糖和米等買賣事業旺盛, 溝通有無, 船舶是最重要的運輸工具.  但不論是來往中國大陸或日本, 商人多使用木造帆船載運人貨.  有 "糖船", "橫洋船", "販漕船", 小船則有澎仔, 杉板頭等等.  During the Ching Dynasty, Taiwan's market for tea, sugar, and rice grew quickly.  As [Taiwan's] connection to the outside world strengthened, boats became a necessary form of transportation.  But regardless of whether one was headed for the Mainland or Japan, businessmen always used wooden sailboats to move their goods from one place to another.  There were "sugar boats," "ocean-crossing boats," and "peddler boats."  The small boats were all outfitted with awnings covered by cedar boards.

The famous Reverend Mackay, for whom the hospitals
are named.

台灣於一八九五年割給日本以前, 與汽船的發明與普及已經有段時間距離, 岸邊汽船的身影已經不少.  依日本人井出季和太所著臺灣治績志, 一八七七年, 就有 "菲爾頓" 號航行淡水與基隆之間.  怡和洋行也有自己的汽船, 在台灣南部和東部穿梭.  台灣北部長老教會的開創者馬偕牧師, 一八七二年三月從打狗 (高雄) 啟航到淡水, 搭的是 "海龍號" 輪船.  一八八五年, 也有英國道格拉斯公司開始經營淡水, 福州和安平間的輪船載運.  Before Taiwan was partitioned by Japan in 1895, the development and popularization of the steamboat advanced quickly.  In 1877 the Japanese writer Ide Harai, in his "Account of the Administration of Taiwan," stated that "The Feldon" operated between Danshui (Tamshui) and Keelung, and other ocean routes were serviced by other steamships.  There were a number of steamships serving Taiwan's southern and eastern coast.  In March 1883 the Reverend Mackay, from north Taiwan's Presbyterian Church, sailed in a steamboat from Da Gou (Kaohsiung) to Danshui.  The boat he sailed upon was called the "Sea Dragon."  In 1885 the British Douglas Company began operating a steamship line between Danshui, Fuzhou, and Heping.

近代台灣史上, 汽船最鮮明的身影, 應數台灣巡撫唐景崧逃離台灣乘坐的那一艘英籍汽船.  In Taiwan's recent history, the most recognizable steamship is probably the British model used by the former governor, Tang Jing-song, to flee the island.

一八九五年, 台灣面臨巨變, 當五月八日, 清, 日代表在煙台交換批准書, 割台已成不可改變的定局後, 在台灣的清廷官僚和士紳商賣, 群情激憤.  幾次哀哀上告清廷中央, 請求勿棄台灣, 都沒有下文.  於是, 自己組成 "台灣民主國", 進士丘逢甲帶台北士紳向唐景崧呈獻台灣總統金印和藍地黃虎圖案的國旗.  雖然割台之約讓台灣百姓 "哭聲震天", 但唐景崧這個總統似乎只是被趕上架的總統而已, 沒真心要與民死守台灣土地, 抵抗異族新主到最後一兵一卒.  才十三天工夫, 就與內務大臣俞明震, 軍務大臣李秉瑞 "一同潛行至滬尾, 藏匿於英商忌利士海運公司, 遂在六月四日, 趁著黑夜, 不顧一切的搭上英輪亞沙號逃回廈門."  見史明著台灣人四百年史, 迫使台灣民主國夭折.  這艘汽船安全帶走唐景崧, 卻留給台灣百姓更大的悲憤.  In 1895 Taiwan faced a momentous change.  On May 8, Japan signed a treaty with the Ching court which partitioned Taiwan, and led to its becoming part of Japan.  Those Ching officials engaged in Taiwanese business ventures were very angry about this, and visited the Ching court several times to ask them not to give up Taiwan, all without success.  For this reason they formed the "Republic of Taiwan."  The members of the gentry then elected Tang Jing-song (of Taipei) to the office of President, and had a blue flag with a yellow tiger made4 [to represent their new republic]. Although the partitioning of Taiwan from China was viewed as a tragedy by most Taiwanese people, Tang Jing-song's election was more of a stopgap measure, and his government wasn't so interested in the welfare of Taiwanese people or the preservation of their territorial rights.  [This government] put up little resistance when the Japanese arrived, and only functioned for 13 days.  Minister of the Interior Tou Ming-jen and Head of Military Affairs Li Bing-rui "fled with their tails between their legs, hiding among British merchants in a shipping company, and by June 4, in the dark of night, they had embarked on the British ship Yasha for Xiamen."  The first democracy seen in Taiwan's 400 year history crumbled as a steamship carried Tang Jing-song back to China, and the people of Taiwan were left with a great sense of personal loss.

The "Takasago Maru."

台灣進入日治, 輪船載運也進入大規模, 有規律的時期.  日治第二年四月, 總督府開始給大阪商船株式會社補助金六萬圓, 讓它的船定期來往台灣與日本 (相對於台灣, 稱日本為 "內地", 所以此航線稱 "內臺航路") 之間, 每個月兩次.  當時使用的三艘船 "須磨丸", "明石丸" 和 "舞鶴丸", 噸位都不超過兩千.  As the Japanese Imperial Administration began its rule over Taiwan, [the inhabitants of the island] began to use ships on a much larger scale, and ocean traffic was regulated.  During April of the second year of the Administration, the Office of the Governor General granted a subsidy of 60,000 yen to the Osaka Merchant Shipping Co., Ltd., which allowed its ships to travel regularly between Taiwan and Japan.  At that time Japan was called "the Mainland" by people in Taiwan, so this ocean line was called the "Mainland-Taiwan Line."  Boats followed this passage twice a month, and [the Mainland-Taiwan Line] was serviced by three boats: the "Sumamaru," the "Akashimaru," and the "Maizurumaru," each weighing under 2,000 tons.

後來, 船隻愈來愈多, 噸位愈來愈大, 航線愈來愈密, 依一九二五年的資料, 台灣的航運已經非常發達.  台灣本島有沿岸航路, 甲線走東岸, 從基隆經蘇澳, 花蓮港, 新港 (台東成功), 台東火燒島 (綠島), 紅頭嶼 (蘭嶼), 海口 (近屏東車城) 到高雄.  乙線從基隆, 經澎湖馬公, 轉到高雄.  和日本之間的內臺航路, 有橫濱高雄線, 那霸基隆線, 但以神戶基隆線最盛, 一個月有十二次往返, 每月逢日期有一, 四, 六, 八者, 正午從神戶開船, 隔天一早到達九州門司, 午後四點再離開門司, 經兩個半晝夜的時間, 清晨駛入基隆港.  返航路線則每月逢日期一, 三, 六, 九午後四點啟航.  這條航路幾乎是所有日治時期留日菁英必走之路, 留下無數回憶與歷史的特殊海線.  After this point there were more and more ships, the ships were bigger and bigger, and the ocean routes multiplied.  According to literature released in 1925, by that time Taiwan's shipping industry had undergone explosive growth.  On the island of Taiwan there was the Coastal Line, with added service on the east coast.  [This line started in] Keelung and then went to Suao, Hualien Port, Shingang (in Cheng Gong, Taitung County), Green Island, Orchid Island, Haikou (near Checheng in Pingtung County), and ended in Kaohsiung.  Another line went from Keelung, to Magong on Penghu, and then went to Kaohsiung.  There was also the Mainland-Taiwan Line between Taiwan and Japan, the Kaohsiung Coastal Line, and another line between Japan and Keelung.  But the Kobe-Keelung Line was by far the most popular, with 12 ships traveling this route each month, and boats leaving the 1st, 3rd, 6th, and 8th of every month.  The ships left port in Kobe, early the next day they arrived at Kyushu, left Kyushu after 4 pm, sailed two and a half days, and then arrived in Keelung very early in the morning.  Return trips [from Taiwan] left on the 1st, 3rd, 6th, and 9th of every month around 4 pm.  This ocean line was undoubtedly the most important of the Japanese colonial period, and this historic ocean line has left behind many fond memories.

這條航路都用近一萬噸的大輪船, 雖然與戰後起碼的五, 六萬噸的船比較, 無異小巫見大巫, 但當時確實為人們心目中的 "巨輪".  最大的叫 "逢萊丸", 有九千五百噸, "扶桑丸" 有八千三百多噸.  These ocean lines used only boats boats approaching 10,000 tons in size.  Although boats of this size were nothing when compared to the post-War minimum of 50,000-60,000 tons, these boats were still considered "gigantic."  The biggest [of these boats] was called the "Horoumaru," and weighed 9,500 tons.  [Its nearest competitor, the "Fusomaru," came in at more than 8,300 tons.

The "Fujimaru" on the Inner Taiwan Line

日本時代在台灣看到的日本輪船, 全叫甚麼甚麼丸.  據林衡道教授在口述的臺灣風情書中說, 平安時代 (約中國宋代) 貴族之子的幼名都叫某某丸.  為求航海平安, 朝廷賜給官船名字, 也都叫某某丸.  經查日文字典, 刀劍, 樂器, 乃至狗名, 其實也會以 "丸" 結尾.  During the Japanese Colonial Administration in Taiwan, all ships were named "something" maru.  Professor Lin Heng-dao, in his "Taiwan Style"5 says that during the "Period of Prosperity" (roughly concurrent with the Song Dynasty in China), the sons of wealthy families were named "something something" maru.  As a way of ensuring peaceful seas, the royal court would always name the boats "something something" maru.  After consulting a Japanese dictionary, [he discovered that] swords, musical instruments, and even dogs were given this "maru" at the end of their names.

林衡道另指出, 一等艙吃西餐, 二, 三等艙吃日本菜.  "最不愉快的就是一, 二等餐廳座位由船長安排時, 日本人排在上坐, 台灣人排在下坐."  依一九二五年版的臺灣之交通所示, 各種船都分三等, 一等艙票價幾乎恆為三等的三倍, 二等又為三等的兩倍價格.  Lin Heng-dao also pointed out that first class passengers ate a Western meal, while second and third class passengers ate Japanese food.  "The most disappointing thing was that first and second class passengers sat in seats arranged from the captain downward, with the Japanese sitting above, and the Taiwanese sitting below."  As the 1925 book "Taiwan Transport" explained, the tickets for each boat were divided into three classes.  Second class tickets were twice as expensive as third class tickets, and first class tickets were three times as expensive as third class tickets.

現在的天空, 分分秒秒都有航班, 輪船早已追不上飛機的速度.  但在那個遙遠的過去, 輪船猶如現在的飛機, 是被運用得最頻繁的國際交通工具, 可以載人到全世界各國.  日本時代在台灣搭船, 最遠已可到達曼谷, 新加坡及越南西貢, 海防港, 每月發一次船.  In modern times planes move across the sky every minute of every day, and ships could never compete with the speed of airplanes.  But in the distant past boats took the place now occupied by airplanes, serving as the most important means of transport and a way for people to visit any country, in any part of the world.  During the Japanese Imperial Administration people could travel by boat as far as Bangkok, Singapore, and both Saigon and Haiphong in Vietnam.  A boat left [for these ports] once a month.

到新加坡的三等票價為六十二圓, 到香港十八圓, 到菲律賓二十三圓, 到日本神戶二十圓.  一般中下級公務員月薪十幾圓上下, 這樣的搭船旅費相對不算太貴.  The price of a third class ticket to Singapore was 62 yen, to Hong Kong was 18 yen, to the Philippines was 23 yen, and to Kobe Japan was 20 yen.  Most middle and lower-level workers earned just under a hundred yen a month, so traveling by boat wasn't so expensive.

Kobe-Keelung Line.

Related Entries:

Traintime: Taipei to Suao 蘇澳
Traintime: Fengyuan 豐原 to Taipei
Traintime: Kaohsiung 高雄 to Taichung 台中
台灣西方文明初體驗 The Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan (3 of 4)

1. The Chinese refers to his school as being in 岡村, or "Gang Village."  This could be a place in Chingshui, or it might be a reference to a place in Japan.  It's impossible to tell from the text.

2. Taiwan Province?  What?  The KMT planned to "retake the Mainland" after being kicked out by the communists.  They viewed Taiwan as a province separated from the other, communist-occupied provinces.

3. 輪船 or "wheel ship" could be translated as either "ship" or "steamship" depending on the context.

4. This flag can be seen in the sidebar of this blog.  The original can be viewed at the Taiwan Museum of History in Tainan.

5. Hey, it's the name of this blog!  台灣風情 is, however, the most appropriate way to translate "Taiwan Style" into Chinese.  The Chinese name of this blog, 東方與西方的巧遇, would translate into something more like "A Brief Encounter Between East and West."

2017年12月6日 星期三

Traintime: Taipei to Suao 蘇澳

She wanted me to hurry, so I hurried.  A scooter ride to Chao Ma 朝馬, then a bus to Taipei.  Hurry, hurry, hurry, because the train from Taipei to Yilan 宜蘭 left and such and such a time, and because we had to meet her friend's boyfriend in Yilan at such and such a time, and because if we didn't do all of those things everything was F*CKED and our vacation was ruined.

Funny thing was, I didn't even know where Yilan was at that point.  I had this vague notion that it was somewhere north, somewhere "past Taipei," but that was it.  My knowledge of Taiwan's geography extended only to a) the airport, and b) my apartment and its immediate environs.  How was I supposed to know why we were so hurried?  How was I to supposed know what the problem was?

On the bus from Taichung 台中 she was swearing.  Swearing at the traffic.  Swearing at the driver (in English, so he wouldn't understand).  We had to go, we had to go, she said, and why was the bus taking so long?  Who ever heard of a bus from Taichung to Taipei hitting traffic?

Then we were running through the train station.  Was it my first time in the (enormous) Taipei Train Station?  I think it was.  Running and running and running, and I couldn't make heads or tails of anything.  She went to get the tickets (I think), she led me downstairs (I think), and then we smashed our way onto a train that didn't have any seats left, where strangers looked uncomfortably out the window.

The train passed through endless tunnels.  Where were we really going, I wondered.  Wasn't Yilan near Taipei?  Wasn't Taiwan a small island?  How was it that an hour later we were still on the train?  She wasn't very helpful in her explanations.  All she could say was that we were in a tremendous hurry, and that her friend's boyfriend was waiting.

I began to notice the scenery outside the window.  Gone were the high rises and rush hour traffic.  Gone were the crowds I'd seen almost every day since arriving in Taiwan.  The air got better.  I could see the ocean.  And were those mountains in the distance?  Yes, I believed they were.

The train pulled into a train station.  I don't remember which.  It might have been Yilan.  It might just have easily been Jiaoshi 礁溪 or Suao.  Two of her other friends showed up and we found the friend's boyfriend, waiting outside.

I turned around to see a high school student laughing hysterically.  "She's never seen a foreigner," her friend explained, and I felt like I was on the other side of the moon.

I smiled and got in a car with several other people.  The friend's boyfriend was our tour guide.  Where did he take us?  Where did we go?  I'd be at a loss to tell you.  For me that whole weekend was a series of river valleys and restaurants, winding roads and oddly designed tourist traps.  I remember going up Tai Ping Mountain 太平山.  I remember the hot springs at Jiaoshi.  But I couldn't tell you if we got as far south as Suao.  We might have - I don't remember.

And why do I remember Jiaoshi?  Because by that point she was feeling so sorry for me.  I'd been trapped in a small car with her friends for days, none the wiser for all their Chinese conversation.  What's one to do for a lonely foreign boyfriend?  How is one to appease him?

Let's just say that our time in Jiaoshi was like being in one of the higher-quality porn movies.  Everything was well lit, the performances were convincing, and everyone involved had a great time.  Sure, it was a lousy weekend, and no, I never really understood what the big hurry was, but that hour in Jiaoshi was well worth the confusion, loneliness, and transit time.  It would have been worth all of that and then some.

Believe you me.

Related Entries:

Walking Around Dawu 在大武散步
Traintime: Fengyuan 豐原 to Taipei
Traintime: Kaohsiung 高雄 to Taichung 台中
My Sister's Visit to Taiwan 我妹妹來台的旅遊

2017年11月30日 星期四

Walking Around Dawu 在大武散步

I was one of the judges for the Reader's Theater competition in Dawu last weekend.  I got there a bit early, so I had time to walk around.  我上個周末在大武的英語讀者劇場競賽當評審.  我比較早到, 所以有空在大武散步.

This is a local KTV.  I'm guessing that Dawu isn't the most happening place at night.  當地的卡拉ok.  我覺得大武的夜晚不會很熱鬧.

This is the northern half of Dawu, which is separated from the southern half by the Dawu River.  Most of the town lies close to Highway 9, and aside from the Dawu Forest Trail there's not much around here for tourists.  這是大武的北部.  大武溪的另外一邊是南部.  大部分的市區緊鄰台9線.  除了大武林道之外, 大武沒什麼觀光景點.

There are a lot of abandoned houses in Dawu.  在大武有很多房子沒人住.

Probably a good place to buy cheap land?  But what would you do with the land?  Live on it?  Farm?  在這裡買地應該很便宜.  可是買地做甚麼?  要住大武嗎?  要種菜嗎?

The Dawu River is very quiet.  大武溪是很安靜的地方.

This is where the Dawu River empties into the Pacific.  The Dawu Forest Trail is up the hill to the right.  這裡是大武溪口.  大武林道在右邊的小山坡上.

Looking towards the mountains.  You can see the South-Link train line on the right.  Dawu is the last stop before the train crosses the mountains into Pingtung County.*  往山區看南迴線.  在右邊的大武是台東縣內往屏東縣的最後一站.

No idea what this place is.  Found it behind Dawu Junior High School.  A lot of empty buildings.  不知道這是什麼地方.  我在大武國中後面發現的.  這裡有很多空的建築物.

This is one of the schools practicing for the Reader's Theater competition.  The kids were very friendly, and didn't seem nervous around foreigners.  準備參加英語讀者劇場競賽的團體.  孩子們很熱心, 在外國人的面前不緊張.

Highway 9, looking south toward Dawu.  It was a long drive down there, but I found the place interesting.  I'd like to explore it more in the future.  在台9線上往南邊的大武看.  開車到那裏很累, 可是我還是覺得很有趣, 改天再來探索吧.

Related Entries 相關的文章:

Traintime: Fengyuan 豐原 to Taipei
What's Going On in Taitung 台東最近發生的事 5
Traintime: Kaohsiung 高雄 to Taichung 台中
My Sister's Visit to Taiwan 我妹妹來台的旅遊

*There's actually another stop, Gu Juang 古莊, before Pingtung County, but I've never been on a train that stopped there.

2017年11月29日 星期三

Traintime: Fengyuan 豐原 to Taipei

The map above is missing a lot of stops, and even entire train lines.  But for my purposes it's probably good enough.  I'm skipping over several stops anyway.

1. Fengyuan 豐原.  Since translating that "Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan" book I've learned a bit more about Fengyuan and its surprisingly long history.  When I lived in Taichung I didn't get up there much, aside from trips down the road that goes from Fengyuan to the Coastal Expressway 海濱快速公路.

It's an uneventful place, but I like that view along the river north of Taichung City.

Downtown Miaoli City.

2. Miaoli 苗栗.  My impression of Miaoli County has always been that it's "varied" (i.e. it has a lot of interesting places in it).  My impression of Miaoli City, however, is that it's one of the most boring cities in Taiwan.  When we lived in Taichung we took the train into Miaoli often, and I suppose it was the first part of Taiwan (outside Taichung) that I explored.

I like the hillsides in Miaoli.  That reddish soil, with those distinctive trees.  It's definitely not a good county for observing wildlife, but when I think of those hillsides I feel very nostalgic.

Points of interest in Miaoli?  This is all off the top of my head, but I remember that the town of Sanyi 三義, where they carve wood, was somewhat amusing.  There were also some old train stations, train tracks, and tunnels.  Miaoli also has an aquarium, but when I lived near there that place really wasn't worth going to.

People picking strawberries in Dahu.

Dahu 大湖, where they grow the strawberries, was one of the more fun places in that county.  If memory serves there was also a hot spring area near there, near the southern part of Shui Ba National Park 雪霸國家公園.

But don't put too much stock in what I say about Miaoli, Hsinchu, or Taoyuan.  Those counties are very far from where I live now, and I only visit them infrequently.

3. Jhunan 竹南.  I can only remember two things about Jhunan, and they are: 1) There's a Taiwan Beer Brewery there, and 2) There's a beach resort near the ocean, not far from Hsinchu.

Hsinchu Train Station, built by the Japanese.

4. Hsinchu 新竹.  I lived in this city for a year.  I enjoyed some aspects of it, really didn't enjoy others, but it's changed so much since that time that I couldn't presume to tell you much about it.  Last time I drove into Hsinchu I got SO lost.  Everywhere I looked there were new buildings, and roads where there were no roads before.

I have many fond memories of the Neiwan Line 內灣線 that runs east into the mountains from Hsinchu.  When I lived in Hsinchu I spent a lot of time in Jhudong 竹東.  Neiwan, at the end of that line, is a cute little town.  There are a ton of strange mountain places east of Jhudong, and some surprisingly unspoiled natural scenery.  

I miss Beipu 北埔.  There was some good food in Beipu.

5. Taoyuan 桃園.  I was in Taoyuan not long ago, attempting to take my daughters to Coca-Cola World 可口可樂世界.  It took forever to find it, and once we did we quickly discovered that you can only visit that place as part of a group.

Taoyuan County

During the year I lived in Hsinchu I visited Taoyuan many times, but I don't remember much.  Like Hsinchu, most of the more scenic/interesting places in Taoyuan are closer to the mountains, and I had a good time visiting some of the Hakka villages in that area.

I always meant to go to La La Mountain 拉拉山 and "Little Wulai" 小烏來, but still haven't made it over.  They look nice in the pictures I've seen, but I've never been in that area with a car and with the energy to seek those places out.

Taoyuan International Airport

Oh, and of course Taoyuan International Airport is in that part of Taiwan.  A lot of people get confused because their ticket stubs say "Taipei," but the airport is really in Taoyuan.  This is why the "Airport MRT" is called the Taoyuan MRT on many of the signs.  It's operated by the Taoyuan County Government.

6. Taipei 台北.  I already talked about Taipei in this entry and this entry.  So I'll just leave it there.

...aside from the fact that it's HUGE and there's a ton of stuff to do.  If you don't like Taipei, it's probably because you don't like crowds.  Just the same Taipei is a fun (if expensive) city, and I usually have a good time there.

Related Entries:

Traintime: Kaohsiung 高雄 to Taichung 台中
My Sister's Visit to Taiwan 我妹妹來台的旅遊
台灣西方文明初體驗 The Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan (3 of 4)
Dongjhu 東竹 to Hualien 花蓮, According to the Hualien-Taitung Line 花東線 and My Faulty Memory

2017年11月25日 星期六

What's Going On in Taitung 台東最近發生的事 5

Local news from the past week or so.  If you can read Chinese, I've linked the various news articles below.  這些是上個禮拜左右的新聞.  看得懂中文的讀者可參考以下的網址.

A. Anything I Missed?  我沒聽說的新聞呢?

A lot of news gets by me.  A lot of news also gets by the major news outlets.  If there's a recent happening that YOU think is important, let me know and I'll try to include it here.  有很多新聞我沒注意到.  還有很多新聞登不上各大報.  你如果知道某些重要的新聞但是在這裡找不到, 請告訴我, 我會試著放進這萹文章中.

B. Local News 地區新聞

The Taitung Department of Agriculture is encouraging more farmers to grow bing hua ("ice flowers"), a type of vegetable native to the area.  台東農業會在推廣 "台灣冰花," 一種當地的植物.

Xu Ching-dong, a local poet, has released another book of poems about Taitung.  當地的詩人徐慶東發表了他的創作今夜, 在東海岸.

On November 18 Jin Feng Township hosted several roselle flower activities.  十一月十八日金鋒鄉辦理幾場洛神花系列活動.

The Taitung County Government continues to push (ha ha) its "TTPush" web app.  They have spent a lot of money on this project.  台東縣政府持續推廣他們的TTPush APP.  他們為了這個APP花了很多錢.*

A Facebook group inspired local fishermen to take part in a beach clean up.  They collected a lot of garbage.  臉書社團讓當地的漁夫淨灘.  他們撿的垃圾真多.

You might have noticed the wind getting stronger, and shifting to the northeast.  In Cheng Gong this signals the beginning of swordfish season.  你可能注意到強風來自東北部.  這也代表著成功的旗魚季開始了.

The Taitung County Aboriginal Culture Hall (the building with the winding staircase near the main entrance to the Forest Park) is offering a new menu consisting of aboriginal cuisine.  Looks yummy from the pictures.  台東縣原住民文化會館 (森林公園大門口對面的建築物) 推出了他們的 "原味套餐."  看網站上的照片好像很好吃的樣子.

The Taitung County Government wants to build a solar power facility in Jer Ben, although the County Magistrate says that if residents there are against it it won't be built.  台東縣政府要在知本發展太陽能發電區.  只是縣長說 "部落不同意就不做."

There was a car accident on Ma Heng Heng Boulevard in Taitung City Tuesday night.  After the accident on of the drivers heart stopped.  He was rushed to Mackay Hospital.  星期二晚上在台東市馬亨亨大道發生車禍.  一位駕駛送往馬偕醫院時已經沒有呼吸心跳了.

In anticipation of the upcoming Taitung Open of Surfing, there was another beach clean up near Jin Dzuen Harbor.  為迎接衝浪比賽, 縣政府在金樽舉辦淨灘活動.

Two members of the Green Island Township Office got in a fight!  綠島鄉的鄉長跟跟一位鄉代打架.

Workers on the Green Island Ferry participated in a safety drill on Tuesday.  台東離島航線客船辦緊急應變實船演練.

County Magistrate Justin Huang presided over the opening of a "special care facility" in Chang Bin Township.  縣長黃健庭參加長濱鄉多元照顧中心的開幕.

There's a news report on some guy finding part of a brick wall in the ocean.  Yes, that's how little news there is in Taitung.  有新聞報導人在海邊撿到磚牆一塊.  台東真的有這種新聞.

An international longboard surfing competition started this week in Jin Dzuen.  國際衝浪長板競賽這禮拜展開.

In defiance of all common sense, a County council member once again suggested an "environmental review" for the "Beautiful Bay" Hotel in Shan Yuan.  The County Magistrate responded with "No."  有議員建議重啟杉原的美麗灣環評, 可是縣長說 "不."

C. Happy Thanksgiving!  感恩節快樂!

Last Thursday was Thanksgiving.  Hope you had a good one.  What did I do during Thanksgiving?  I was one of the judges for the Reader's Theater competition in Dawu, and after that my family had Korean food for dinner.  上禮拜四是感恩節.  希望你們的感恩節過得偷快.  我感恩節做甚麼呢?  早上工作, 晚上我和家人一起吃漢堡.

Related Entries 相關的文章:

My Sister's Visit to Taiwan 我妹妹來台的旅遊
Getting Lost Near Highway 11 在台11線附近迷路
Taitung 台東 to Chrshang 池上, According to the Hualien-Taitung Line 花東線 and My Faulty Memory
What's (Probably) Going On in Taitung 最近台東大概發生的事

*Full disclosure here.  Last semester I was paid to translate parts of this APP into English.  No idea if what I translated is still used as part of the service.

2017年11月24日 星期五

Traintime: Kaohsiung 高雄 to Taichung 台中

The map above is missing a lot of stops, and even entire train lines.  But for my purposes it's probably good enough.  I'm skipping over several stops anyway.

1. Kaohsiung 高雄.  I already talked about Kaohsiung in this entry and this entry.  I'll just leave it there...

...aside from the general fact that if you approach Kaohsiung in the right way it can be a good time.  If you get there, and it's Friday afternoon, and you're trying to fight your way over to Shidzewan 西子灣, of course you're going to HATE it, but if you can learn to approach it on its own terms it can be... fun - or at least amusing to some extent.

Gangshan is close to Kaohsiung's "Moon World" 月世界

2. Gangshan 岡山.  My mother in law lives in Gangshan.  According to my wife she lives in a tiny apartment, and for some reason she spends most of her time volunteering in a real estate office.  I say again: volunteering in a real estate office.  Who works in a real estate office for free?  My mother in law, apparently.

Gangshan is one of Kaohsiung's big industrial suburbs.  It is NOT scenic, but there are some very "local" attractions around there.  Nothing that will blow your mind, but wouldn't you like to see the Soya Mixed-Meat Museum?  Come on, you know you want to!

3. Tainan 台南.  Tainan's (self-applied?) nickname is the "ancient capital," (古都) and it definitely has a lot of history.  I used to have in-laws there, I've run several marathons within the city limits, and I enjoy visiting it when I have the time.

Temple gate in Tainan.

A lot of Tainan's history is to be found down little alleyways.  It's nothing grand - not even An Ping Fort 安平古堡 is that impressive - but in the right location, and at the right time of day, Tainan can feel very old.

Tainan also boasts a lot of famous food.  It is in some ways the most "Taiwanese" of Taiwanese cities, and the bustling trade seen at local night markets attests to this fact.  Despite its long history of settlement it's still also very rural, and there are some somewhat-scenic points of interest in that part of Taiwan.

4. Jiayi 嘉義.  "Jiayi, home of turkey rice."  Jiayi is famous for its turkey rice, and yeah, I guess you could stop there and try it.

Turkey rice is good, but not worth driving to Jiayi for.

My wife and I recently spent a weekend exploring Jiayi, and I was very happy with some of the places we discovered.  It won't jump out at you the way Taipei, Kaohsiung, or Tainan will, but it can be a nice place to spend the day.  Most people pass through Jiayi City on their way to Alishan 阿里山, and if you did, and don't remember it, I don't blame you.

5. Dounan 斗南.  Isn't there a train station in Yunlin's 雲林 biggest city, Douliou 斗六?  I'm fairly certain there is, but on the above map it doesn't look like it.

I've been to Dounan a hundred times.  We usually pass through it on our way back from the village where my wife grew up.  I could tell you about some places in Douliou further north, but Dounan's tourist spots are slipping my mind right now.

Tianjhong Train Station.

6. Tianjhong 田中.  Don't ask me why, but long ago we once took the train there and went to a park.  It was completely uninteresting.

7. Yuanlin 員林.  Yuanlin's in Changhua County, just across the river from Yunlin.  Like Dounan, I've been through it a hundred times, though I'd be at pains to tell you what there is to do there.  I seem to remember a lot of grapes and wine for sale along the road.  "Hundred Fruit Mountain" 百果山?  That's in Yuanlin, isn't it?

8. Changhua 彰化.  I once lived fairly close to Changhua City.  At that time we lived across the river to the north, in Taichung's Industrial Area, so it was a straight shot down the road to downtown Changhua.  Strange as it may seem now, back then Chang Hua offered the closest Mos Burger to our house.

Bagua Mountain.

Bagua Mountain 八卦山 in downtown Changhua is worth visiting in the early morning or late afternoon (depending on the air quality).  You can take some great pictures up there.  Walking up into the big Buddha is also fun.

One tourist attraction I've never really understood is Lugang 鹿港.  It's down the road to the west from downtown Changhua, and getting there usually involves quite a fight with traffic.  It's somewhat historic (in that it's in all the social studies textbooks), but I've never found it that interesting.

9. Taichung 台中.  I lived in Taichung for four years, but haven't been back there for eons.  Sometimes I want to go back and see how certain friends are doing, but then I think about the drive and change my mind.

Taichung's air quality (or lack thereof).

Taichung is a big, bustling city and I'm sure there's a lot of new stuff there that I have no knowledge of.  Yes, the air is terrible, and yes, the traffic can be frightening, but it can be a fun city if you go to the right part of it.

It's like Kaohsiung I suppose.  Or like anywhere.  In a bad mood everyplace sucks, and every big city has its less pleasant side.

Much better at night?

Related Entries:

My Sister's Visit to Taiwan 我妹妹來台的旅遊
台灣西方文明初體驗 The Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan (3 of 4)
Dongjhu 東竹 to Hualien 花蓮, According to the Hualien-Taitung Line 花東線 and My Faulty Memory
Getting Lost Near Highway 11 在台11線附近迷路

2017年11月18日 星期六

My Sister's Visit to Taiwan 我妹妹來台的旅遊

My friend referred to it as "staycation," though I'm not sure if he meant the days I'd be taking off or the time I'd spend introducing my sister to Taiwan.  Whichever one it is, it definitely wasn't relaxing.  Fun at times sure, but definitely not relaxing.  我有一個朋友稱這種情況 "留假," 可是我搞不清楚他指的是我請假的期間, 還是我帶我妹妹認識台灣的時間.  不管哪一個意思, 這段過程一點也不輕鬆.  當然有時候很好玩, 可是一點輕鬆感都沒有.

My sister was here for two weeks.  She flew over on a Sunday from San Francisco, and flew back two Sundays later.  During those two weeks I had to work five days, but I spent the rest of the time showing her around.  我妹妹來台灣兩個禮拜.  她從舊金山到台灣是一個禮拜天, 也在二個星期後的禮拜天飛回去.  這二個星期我上班五天, 其他的時間我都帶著她去玩.

After her arrival at Taoyuan International Airport, we went straight back to my apartment in Taitung.  She spent the next three days recovering from jet lag, and by the time I was finally "free" she was, for the most part, adjusted to the time change.  她到桃園機場之後我們直接回來台東.  剛開始三天她用來調整時差, 當我終於不用上班的時候她也比較習慣台灣的時間了.

The first order of business was a trip up the coast.  I drove her to San Shian Tai ("Three Fairies Bridge") and with made many stops along the way.  We would have gone farther up the coast, but it was raining and we wanted to have lunch in Dulan.  我們第一件做的事是開車往東海岸.  我帶她去三仙台和沿路上其他的地方.  我們原來想往更北邊的地點, 可是那一天下雨, 而且我們也想在都蘭吃午餐.

Jia Lu Lan 加路蘭.

Dong He 東河.

The view from San Shian Tai 三仙台上的風景.

On the following day we drove up the East Rift Valley, turning back at Jade Mountain National Park.  That was a LONG drive.  We ran into trouble when she "couldn't find anything to eat" in Chr Shang, but she did like the stinky tofu in Guanshan.  隔天我們開車往花東縱谷, 並在玉山國家公園回轉.  哇!  那一天開車開很久!  她在池上找不到想吃的東西 - 有點煩 - 可是她後來發現關山的臭豆腐不錯.

Yuan Sen Botanical Gardens 原生植物園.

Luye Gaotai ("Luye High Terrace") 鹿野高台.

Chr Shang 池上.

Jade Mountain National Park Visitor's Center 玉山國家公園遊客中心.

Rice fields near Nan An Village 南安村附近的稻田.

Most of Saturday was spent driving between Taitung City and Kaohsiung's Dream Mall.  In Dream Mall she bought a very expensive pair of shoes, and afterwards we drove to Kenting, where we spent the night.  我們禮拜六大多時間是在台東市到高雄夢時代的路上.  她在夢時代買了一雙很貴的鞋子.  之後我們開車到墾丁過夜.

The night market on Kenting Road was, I think, one of her favorite parts of the trip.  I can't remember what foods she liked exactly, but she seemed very happy there.  We also had drinks in front of the Howard Prince Hotel, and she bought a woven bracelet with her name on it.  我妹妹在台灣旅遊最喜愛的部分大概是逛墾丁大街夜市.  我忘記她在那裏喜歡甚麼食物, 可是她那個晚上顯得很快樂.  我們在福華飯店前喝了幾杯酒, 她也在夜市裡買了一條有她名字的手鍊.

The place on Kenting Road where we had drinks 我們在墾丁喝酒的地方.

Kenting National Park 墾丁國家公園.

The following Sunday we went to the aquarium and walked around the old city fortifications in Hengchun.  She liked the aquarium, but not as much as I would have thought.  I couldn't tell if Hengchun was boring for her, or if she just hadn't slept well the previous night.  那個禮拜天我們去海洋公園跟恆春古城.  她喜歡海洋館, 但不是我想像中的那麼喜歡.  我不知道她喜不喜歡恆春古城, 也或許是晚上沒睡好太累了.

Hengchun's South Gate 恆春古城的南門.

The National Taiwan Aquarium 國立台灣海洋生物博物館.

On Monday we rode bicycles from my apartment to the Forest Park, and from there to the Seashore Park.  We had lunch at Lin Family Dumplings.  My sister was very tired after this bike trip, so after lunch we went home so she could rest.  星期一我們從我家騎單車到森林公園再騎到海濱公園.  我們在鄰家蒸餃吃午餐.  騎單車讓我妹妹很累, 所以吃完午餐之後就回家休息.

Bike trail west of the Forest Park 森林公園北邊的單車車道.

My sister in the Forest Park 我妹妹在森林公園.

Hill next to the Flowing Lake 活水湖旁邊的山坡.

The "paper mache house" next to the Seashore Park 海濱公園旁的舊房子.

The day after that we went to the Prehistory Museum.  She must have spent at least an hour in the gift shop, thinking about what to buy.  She seemed to enjoy taking pictures of that place, especially since the weather on that day was the best of her entire stay in Taiwan.  隔天我們去史前博物館.  她在精品店花了一個多小時, 都在考慮要買甚麼.  她好像很喜歡在那裏拍照.  那一天的天氣是她在台東的時候最好的.

The National Taiwan Museum of Prehistory 國立台灣史前博物館.

On Wednesday rode bicycles around the downtown area.  Starbucks, Eslite, the Tong Yi Bookstore, and the Queen of Heaven Temple (in that order).  She seemed much more "in her element" in the Eslite, and I began to realize that some of her discomfort with Taitung was simply due to the fact that it's so rural, and that there's so little to do indoors here.  She is, in other words, a city person.  禮拜三的時候我們在市區騎單車.  去了星巴克, 誠品書店, 統一書局和天后宮誠品好像比較適合她.  那時候我開始發現她不那麼喜歡台東的原因應該是這裡比較鄉下.  她是城市佬, 而這裡沒有那麼多室內的地方.

I had to work the following Thursday and Friday, but we did have hot pot at the Showtime Multiplex on Friday.  I think that was the first meal I saw her eat here.  Up to that point she'd been eating a mix of chocolate bars, fried onion cakes, and fruit.  之後的星期四和星期五我要上班, 可是禮拜五晚上我們去秀泰影城吃火鍋.  那應該是我第一次看到她在台東吃套餐.  在這之前, 她只有吃巧克力, 蔥油餅和水果.

Last Saturday and Sunday were her last weekend in Taiwan.  As you might have expected, we spent it in Taipei.  We stayed the night in a "capsule hotel" in the Ximending shopping area, with side trips to the Taipei 101, Shandao Temple, Longshan Temple, and the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall.  That part of her trip was a lot of people, a lot of MRT, and a lot of gift shops.  I don't think I've walked so much in a long time.  上個周末是我妹妹在台灣的最後一個周末.  你大概已經猜出來了 - 我們那時候在台北.  我們在西門町的膠囊飯店過夜, 還去了101大樓, 善導寺, 龍山寺中正紀念堂.  那一段的旅遊是人多, 捷運多, 精品店多的部分.  我很久沒走那麼多路了.

Taking a break in the Taipei Main Station 在台北車站休息.

Near the Taipei 101 在101附近.

On the MRT 坐捷運.

The Ximending Shopping District from the "capsule hotel" 西門町.

Temple in Ximending 西門町的一所廟.

Pro-China demonstration next to the Ximen MRT stop 西門站旁的親中國示威.

And then, at around 4 pm last Sunday afternoon, I was hugging my sister goodbye and hoping that she'd be ok waiting by herself in the airport.  Two weeks had flashed by, she was going back to her "real life" in California, and it was time for me to start going back to Taitung.  I could barely believe it.  Two weeks gone.  Just like that!  上禮拜天下午四點我在機場跟我妹妹說再見, 很緊張她自己一個人等飛機會不會有問題.  二個禮拜的時間過得真快.  她要回去加州, 我要回來台東.  我不敢相信兩個禮拜就這樣子過去了!

I'll miss my sister, but I sure am looking forward to not going anywhere for a while!  我會想念我的妹妹, 可是我很期待可以在家裡休息!

Related Entries 相關的文章:

台灣西方文明初體驗 The Influence of Western Civilization on Taiwan (3 of 4)
Dongjhu 東竹 to Hualien 花蓮, According to the Hualien-Taitung Line 花東線 and My Faulty Memory
Getting Lost Near Highway 11 在台11線附近迷路
Taitung 台東 to Chrshang 池上, According to the Hualien-Taitung Line 花東線 and My Faulty Memory