Monday, December 10, 2007

Saturday Warming Rally

Another fun weekend in Taipei.....

Took the family up to Taipei on the HSR on Saturday.

The kids were really psyched.

Business class still has a seat or two left.

One great thing about the HSR is that it doesn't track the highway and thus, goes through some wonderful rustic scenery on the way up to Taipei. I'd have taken many beautiful pictures, but window washing on the HSR leaves a lot to be desired.

I met Michael Fahey and his wonderful girlfriend in front of Sogo.

Taking a rest on a warm Saturday afternoon in Taipei.

Just behind Sogo is a neighborhood packed with little eateries and boutiques.

Beats the eyes of Dr. T. J. Eckleberg.

Wherever you are, there's a vendor.

Michael and I bopped over to the global warming protest at the Sun Yat Sen Memorial.

At the protest, we met Vice President Annette Lu....

....and David Reid of David on Formosa.

I caught these protesters directing raised pinkies at Annette Lu. Moments after I took this shot, they were surrounded by cameramen. What do raised pinkies mean?

One tiny part of the anti-global warming coalition was the sex workers association.

Are you foreign and at a protest? You will be photographed. So I photo'd back.

Robin Winkler, right, and a key legislator in the TSU, left.

A protester shows me her sign.

Taipei 101 looks down on global warming protesters.

Those of you that know this cold noodle chain, here is the original store, in Taipei right next to the Chungcheng Bridge into Yungho. In the back there is a little museum that shows off the owner's brother's skill at painting and carving

Beers in hand, we strolled over to the park to enjoy sunset on the Tamshui River between Yungho and Taipei.

The bike paths stretch from Taipei to the sea.

Plenty of people down by the river planting and harvesting....

...and fishing too.

Michael at his most photogenic.

Idyllic at present, the park was a killing ground during the Japanese and early KMT period.

And so it was home again, the train whisking us back to sunny Taichung...


Thomas said...

I used to run all the time on the Yonghe side of the Xindian Xi. In fact, you can see one building in one of your pictures that is right in front of where my apartment was. I miss Yonghe :(

Anyways, I had never heard that the park had a sinister past. What killing went on there? And to think, I may have been running past places of dark and dirty deeds all that time and never knew it... ah history! I wonder if the park is haunted :-)

Jason said...

"What do raised pinkies mean?"

Green boogers, which I would imagine is the DPP's long-in-development rebuttal to the Red Shirt Gang's "thumbs-down" gesture.

Amy Lin said...

Raising one's pinky has the opposite meaning of raising one's thumb. It is meant to belittle the other person.

When two people lock their pinkies, they are making a promise. It is a gesture used by children and mostly among young women.

Marc Anthony said...

Throughout the city of Paris, France there are plaques that commemorate fallen heroes of the French Resistance, policemen executed by the Nazis for defending their homeland, the massacres of failed revolutions (such as 1871)and religious wars, and even sites where kings where assassinated.

Having just watched Hou Hsiao Hsien's "City of Sadness" again, and echoing Thomas' surprise about the park in Yonghe, perhaps Taipei should think of memorializing its own fallen to remind everyone of the struggles and sacrifices of its people.

jerome said...

Michael, great pictures on this post. As often. You're getting better and better. Focus on it. Lovely portrait of your kids. J.

Michael Turton said...

Thanks, Jerome.

Thomas, you'd have to ask Michael Fahey, he knows more about it than me.

taipeimarc said...

Tidbits to add to your excellent post if anyone is interested:

1. Funny how the HSR trains are all turning a dirty brown color now. I wonder why? Does it pass by too many chemical factories? I just took it down to Tainan and noticed this the other day.

2. On your 8th picture down (Just behind Sogo is a neighborhood packed...) photo, you caught a photo of the best export clothing store in Taiwan. Notice the blue sign on the right "King Cheu Store", Its been there for 20 years and has all the good stuff at 75%+ discount price. This is on my list of one of the top 10 places to visit while in Taipei.(!) For the longest time, it was one of the only places to get decent quality western clothing.

3. The statement that Yates made: " -- too many voices attempt to speak for Taiwan..." is the absolute truth. Taiwan doesn't help its cause by having two diametrically opposed positions about where it wants to go. Who can understand this?

4. I've taken that bike trail 1000x. The killing grounds is where I use to hook up with my friends. ("I'll meet you at the killing grounds..."). It's one of those phrases that is part of my Taiwan experience similar to when we go to Kenting and I give directions to our favorite beach: Turn right at the nuclear power plant.....

5. China Shrinks Dec9 article in the NYT about the real size of the China economy. (oops, sorry you may need to sign in, but it explains how the Wordbank made a mistake in their calculations. Link2

Michael Turton said...

thanks, Taipeimarc, great comment.

Feiren said...

Machangding (馬場盯) was a stop on the old Wanhua-Xindian railway that ran down today's Dingzhou Rd. The railway was built in 1921 and operated by Taipei Railways Inc. (台北鐵道株式會社) a private consortium of Japanese investors.

The Machangding Memorial Park is located just outside the flood walls near Youth Park on the Taipei side. Access is through Flood Gate 11. The Memorial Park is in fact part of the larger Huazhong Riverside Park.

According to this site, 4 to 5,000 executions took place here during the 228 period and the White Terror during the early 1950s. According to local residents, the mound of earth we see in the Memorial Park today was created by shoveling dirt over the bloodstains from each execution.

I believe I have also seen accounts that the Japanese used it for the same purpose. There is a memorial plaque to the leftist victims of the White Terror (mostly mainlanders) that uses very similar language to the one in the Taipei Cemetery in Fudekeng.

One of the most notorious executions that occurred here was that of Zhang Minzhi, the president of the Yantai Naval Academy in Shandong. Zhang led some 8,000 students from Shandong to Penghu, but in 1950 200 or so students were shot and dumped into the ocean in hemp bags after protests against being conscripted into the ROC military. This is known as the 713 Incident.

Zhang and several of his students were taken to Machangding where they were tortured and executed.

Relatives of victims still come to make offering from time to time and local residents believe the area is haunted.

Patrick Cowsill said...

Did you see the mound / plaque at "killing fields"? They're actually called Ma Ting Cheng (馬町場); they're about five minutes from my in-law's place in Wanhua.

cheeseontoast said...

Chen Yi, the Governor at the time of 228, was also shot at Machangting--but apparently not officially because of his role in 228.

B.BarNavi said...

"What do raised pinkies mean?"

Maybe someone's raising the Torah, and they're showing reverence to it. :P