Immediately after the wedding, we flew to Taiwan using JetStar Asia. 1.15am flight and it was the first time I took a flight at that timing. I fell asleep only for a short while despite being tired. The seat was uncomfortable for the 4.5 hours. I don’t expect the seats to be very comfortable for a budget airline, so I won’t harp on it. Just very glad that there were no kids on board the same flight.
We spent 2 hours trying to figure out how to get to the hotel because the only way out of Taoyuan Airport was by bus and there is no train connected. An absolute mystery to us. Asking the friendly counter service was no issue, they guided us to the counter to purchase the tickets and we were soon on our way to Taipei Train Station, the interchange, I call it. It is connected to their various train types, from the bullet style trains to what we call in Singapore, MRT.
Toilets were inside the stations even after the gantry because the route from one train type to another was long. Really long. Along the way, there were shops selling food and other stuff, I wanted to get some train souvenirs but the shop was always closed. Apparently, we kept going there after closing hours and before opening hours. We have no idea what time it opens any way.
Finally, we reached Ximending as the hotel was located near there. Choosing that area was not an issue, it was recommended as the happening place. Unfortunately for us, I felt that we were over the age of the youth, there was absolutely nothing for us to buy back for our family. All the stuff were too youthful. Perhaps to the point of being very teenage-ish.
Since we were unable to check in yet, we had lunch somewhere in Ximending. I can’t recall what we had for lunch since this is a rather belated post. Upon checking in, we were dismayed by the condition of the room door. It was just a normal door knob with a key and the door chain.
I was glad that the husband is never a fan of staying at the same hotel for the whole trip. I even had a cockroach running up my leg on the last night of our stay! Always let the housekeeping clear the rubbish bin. We didn’t because we needed sleep. Desperately needed sleep and the result was a cockroach.
The first thing about the security was that we were napping upon check in and at 5pm, Taiwan time, I heard someone opening and closing the room doors. When ours was opened, we couldn’t sleep any more. Husband went to check but the culprit was nowhere to be found. Thankfully, we had put on the door chain before the nap. It totally made us want to leave but there was no hotel rooms available in other hotels yet. We are so not going back to Relite Hotel. The breakfast was not appealing either. We ended up having breakfast at Yonghe Doujiang House in Ximending, almost for 4 days.
No other breakfast exist there except for this shop selling crepe. They seem to have a thing for crepes. We changed to Ximen Hotel on our 3rd day of stay. It was so much better, complete with a small bath tub, husband’s favourite form of relaxing.
We spent the days mostly in Taipei because we had no idea how to get to the rural farms without being lost. Somehow, we ended up eating McDonald’s a few times. The difference there is that they have corn soup in McDonald’s but no corn soup in Mos Burger. The opposite is in Singapore.
One common animal we saw in Taipei were dogs, well-groomed dogs and those tea cup sized dogs. The dogs would be unleashed outside a shop waiting for their owners despite the smell of food in the night markets. Most dog owners would not leash them during the walks. It was really amazing how well-trained the dogs are.
Overall, in Taipei, it’s all about food. We did get to Taipei 101 but on a rainy day, the day Lady Gaga was supposed to come out of W Hotel near Taipei Central Station. I wanted to take a quick photo and post it to Facebook but she refused to come out after 30 minutes with the rain getting heavier. I decided that it was time to experience Taipei 101 and forget about being in Taiwan at the same time as Lady Gaga.
The day we left Taiwan, Yoon Eun Hye arrived. Gah!