Monday, May 9, 2011

A little about Taiwan...

So far our exposure to Taiwan is the airport and two hour drive to Taichung, living and working in the city of Taichung, and a beauitiful hike in the foothills of the mountains to the east of Taichung.  The City is huge, about two million people.  We have driven several miles in three directions, and still there are big buildings, little buildings, street venders, and 7-11's.  I am not sure if there is a "center" part of Taiwan.  It's like taking downtown SLC and replicating it 20, 30, maybe 50 times over.  I don't know.  It's just big and it keeps on going.  It would be very easy to get lost here.  But, the people are so kind and helpful, I am sure I could get good directions back home.  All of us in the city live in apartments, mostly 5 to 15 stories tall.
I am impressed with the order of the city amidst the perpetual traffic, both car, scooter, bike, and foot traffic.  Our missionaries, both Elder and Sister are amazing.  They navigate the traffic on their bikes like they belong there.  And, that is how the residents do--just like they belong on the road.  As chaotic as it seems at times, there is actually good order and seldome does anyone "friek out" about a rude driver.  It is just the Taiwan way.
We have enjoyed the food we have eaten so far--- chinese noodles, dumplings, fried rice, rice wraps, and fruit of every kind.  We have never eaten better fruit and such a wide variety.  The pineapple is especially good and in the middle of its season.  the biggest problem is knowing what to order because we know absolutely no chinese characters on billboards, menus, etc.  So, our chinese speaking Elders have been our food menus. 
It is very humid, and just starting to get warm.  A this point however, the temperature has been perfect.  The hot summer awaits us.

Here are some pictures we have taken so far so you can see what it looks like:

Our Apartment
Our bedroom

The kitchen.  Lola is wearing her favorite apron!

The living room

The office in our apartment

A neighbor friend living in our apartment complex
The City and Street Markets

The new hospital right across the street from the mission office

The Greene's teaching Taiwanese children how to play paper, rock, scissors.  We love the children here.  They are absolutely beautiful.

On a morning walk thru the city

Park and Botanical Gardens
The busy night life

Street markets

Buying from a fruit vendor

Lola buying from one of the vendors

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