It is not easy to be a tour operator, especially one who does not get paid! While I was planning for the day trip each day, I would collect information from taxi drivers and bus drivers. I talked to family, relatives, blog friends, friends and neighbours just to organize a route that would cover every stop that we would like to visit. Every night, I would search online on the special places or interesting destinations to visit. Since Da Pong suddenly had this special mission for Chinese and Japanese swords, I had been researching on the sword-makers in Taiwan.
I must be out of my mind to pick the hottest day to visit Chiang Kai Shek’s Memorial Hall. (See, I forgot to research on the weather!) The day to CKS Memorial Hall was a bit uneventful because we had been there many times. Plus, it was the hottest day ever since our arrival. The heat obviously started to get to us and our pace had been slowed down substantially.
We changed from a bus to subway at Si Men Ding. Since I had lived in Si Men Ding for many years, we decided to swing by the old streets and the temple to pay a visit. We were so hot that we ended up going into the temple to cool down for a bit. The following trip to the CKS Memorial Hall was like snail pace. We dragged our feet for every step we took. (Who decided to build a hall with so many steps anyway?)
At CKS Memorial Hall, we wanted to see the changing of guards. While we were hanging around downstairs, cooling and waiting, we forgot the time and spent too much time going through the display of CKS’s life history. There was also a special Tibet exhibit which was very interesting. I always have a great respect for Tibetans and certainly did not want to miss the display.
Spending too much time at the lower-levelled exhibition halls, we missed the changing of guards! Interestingly enough, while we were looking around at the gift shop, the guards came down and actually passed by us at the lower hall. It was fantastic for us! Da Pong got to snap a few photos of them, which was better than nothing.
While we were sitting at the cafeteria inside CKS Memorial Hall, I was going through all the pamphlets, brochures, programs and flyers, anything available on the display case for tourists. Suddenly, Kaohsiung popped out and seemed to be an interesting destination for us to visit later because I had not been to Kaohsiung for years. Plus, this would be a good reason for us to take the High Speed Rail to go south, which was of great interest to both of us! Little did we know that we ended up taking HSR three times during our month of stay in Taiwan!
To be continued...