Thursday, January 01, 2009

Ringing in the New Year, Taiwan style

Happy 2009 to you. We can't believe how quickly 2008 went by.

After Hong Kong, we met up with our best friends from our year in Michigan, Gary and Kat, who we hadn't seen since we left in May. Gary's parents live in Taipei, so we stopped there first.

Then we headed to Yilan, where I discovered that I'd missed my calling as a puppeteer:

and M discovered that she had missed her calling as a Qing dynasty princess:

I know, I know, kitschy tourist trap stuff, but we do it with a smug sense of irony. Which makes it all okay. Plus a favorable exchange rate makes it a little more reasonable. (We weren't supposed to take any pictures while they were photographing us, but Gary used his ninja skills to shoot this while no one was looking.)

Next, we headed to the coastal city of Hualien on the East side of the island. So gorgeous-- from beaches to mountain areas, cliffs to valleys, this place is awesome.

M got sick of the same old smiling pose, so I decided to innovate:

We made it back to Taipei late last night in time to watch the famous Taipei 101 firework spectacular. We didn't feel up for heading into the downtown area, so we just watched from the balcony.

The whole time zone thing really throws me off, though. Kind of like how it felt watching Times Square three hours later every year in California, except this time, it was 12 hours earlier and in Taiwan. Hmm.

It was a semi-crazy ending to a crazy year. Crazy, but incredible too. M and I both feel deeply blessed to have the family and friends we do, and, of course, plenty of meals and adventures to share with them.


Mind of a Stranger said...

Happy New Year to you too! :D I'm glad to see that both you and Marilyn have enjoyed your holiday celebrations. ^^ May this new year bring more wonderful adventures and experiences. Many blessings and hugs!

Jennifer Liu said...

Looks like you guys had fun in Taiwan! Taroko Gorge is spectacular. I also bought a tai chi panda shirt (but in black) for Lane at the Pudong airport. :)