Nee Hao Taipei
November 15, 2010 § 6 Comments
We arrived in Taipei on Friday evening after a long day of travelling. The flights were not too bad, I watched movies and slept for a lot of the way. The plane food was decent. I think I should start requesting vegetarian meals instead of Muslim meals, because I usually leave the meat behind anyway.
It was raining quite a lot on Friday evening in Taipei. I was especially hungry (after sleeping through lunch on the flight), so we headed out in the direction that looked busy. We ended up grabbing some pasta and heading back to the hotel. I went to bed after a long hot bath. My first impression of the city was that it was busy and full of lights. I was suprised to notice that cars didn’t always stop at pedestrian crossings. Coming from Sweden, it will take some getting used to.
On Saturday morning, I was most startled when we went down for breakfast. Taiwanese eat rice, soup, stews and stir-fry for breakfast. I was disappointed because there was no yogurt or muesli to be found. I must start to adapt to the Taiwanese breakfast menu. We settled on toast, cereal and tea. Later in the day we were picked up by a colleague of my husband for a mini-tour of the city. We first had lunch together at a traditional Taiwanese vegetarian restaurant. The lunch buffet was extensive and we didn’t know what the half of it was. I somewhat enjoyed the sticky brown rice. The rest of the flavours were different. I wouldn’t say that they were bad, but again, they will take some getting used to.
We then headed to his work office, and then to the Mosque, where we conversed briefly with the secretary of the Masjid. He was very friendly, welcomed us to the city and provided us with a much-needed list of Halal restaurants. He also mentioned that Eid ul Adha would be celebrated on Tuesday 16th November. With all of the packing and moving, I hadn’t thought much of the Hajj season or the Eid festivities. I usually yearn to go back to Mecca and perform pilgrimage during this period.
The next stop was the Taipei 101; the second tallest building in the world, after the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. It was so tall – duhh! We took a high speed elevator to the top of the building. It took only 37 seconds to climb 89 floors – insane! At the top, we listened to some general facts about the geography of Taipei whilst looking out the windows of the high building. Taking the elevator down was not so pleasant. Because of the high speed at which the elevator moves, my ears got blocked within the first few seconds- highly uncomfortable. I kept stretching my jaw and swallowing until they opened up again. After the Taipei 101, we took the metro home. It was Sunday afternoon, but still jam-packed! I wonder what it will be like during rush hour.
This morning, the jet lag seems to have finally passed. A starts work today, so I will be exploring alone. I plan to start taking pictures of my adventures again. Post-flight, it was the last thing on my mind. Wish me luck with the new city 🙂