Sunday, January 22, 2012


Here's the real story of New Year! The cleaning.... I'm taking his month off from blogging. But I am still biking, so enjoy some pics from various rides lately. I'm also still writing, had a letter in the Taipei Times the other day.

Can't find yourself? It's because you don't have the "life password" contained in this pamphlet I saw at the temple in Yuanlin yesterday.

One of the pleasures of being a teacher is meeting up with old students. I went down to Yuanlin to see if there were any interesting old relics -- alas, the only old relic was myself -- but I did have lunch with Natasha, who hasn't seemed to have aged a single day while I piled on the years.

Flowers are always in bloom in Taiwan.

At the Thai place that Natasha took me to, the Thai lounge singers regaled us with "Blue Bayou."

The eatery outside the temple in Yuanlin near the train station.

Communicating with the gods at the Matsu temple in Yuanlin.

For burning.

For a small town, Yuanlin feels big and crowded.

Natasha took me up to Baiguo Mountain to one of the temples there.

Hangin' at the temple.

In an alcove offerings appease the god.

Last week Drew took me on a nifty little climb right outside Taichung that is popular with local bikers, Beikeng Rd. It runs past the golf course off of Taiyuan Rd just before you get to Taiping town.

The views were excellent, and if you ever wanted to know what you were breathing....

Farm and orchard country.

Chris Bolster came along for the ride. The grade is easy and the road surface is in good condition. Drew's sturdy ride report with many photos is here.

It's New Year's at the market. That means unspeakables soaking in the morning cold.

The morning market near my house is an absolute madhouse as New Year approaches.

With all the trash the recyclers are picking up a treasure trove.

With the extra business vendors were mobilizing young female labor from friends and family to help out. Here I ran into one of my Chang Gung students lending at hand to a local vegetable vendor. Hello Rosa!

In addition to the vendors who had fixed spots, some people pushed little carts full of goodies.

The tofu vendor scores.

True to Taiwan's just-in-time manfuacturing tradition, delivery people were dropping off new goods as fast as the customers could take them.

At home my wife prepared a small table for the kitchen god. Can't wait to eat those Vietnamese spring rolls!
Don't miss the comments below! And check out my blog and its sidebars for events, links to previous posts and picture posts, and scores of links to other Taiwan blogs and forums! Delenda est, baby.

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