Day 4, Taichung, Taipei
7th December 2010, Tuesday
Our driver managed to get us cheaper tickets for ferry ride along Sun Moon Lake. The usual price was NT300 per ride and we paid NT200. He also managed to get us tickets to Formosan Aboriginal Cultural village for NT600, instead of paying NT700.
Sunset at Sun Moon Lake, view from Wenwu Temple
The ferry ride along the Sun Moon Lake was a pleasant one. Too bad that the weather was rather foggy and was about to rain when we disembark at one of the stops nearby. There were some temples at the smaller islands or shores surrounding the lake. I didn’t take many photos here because everything is in shades of white and grey, and almost impossible to even see anything 1 km away from us. The ferry guy said, if weather is getting worse, there won’t be any ferry rides either due to poor visibility. Since I didn’t take many photos due to fog, here’s a blog link of the place.
Buying food at the Village
After the ferry ride, we were taken to the cable car station, going to Formosan Aboriginal Cultural Village. The ticket of NT600 included the entrance fees and cable car ride. Here, the big group of us split and decided to meet up at some point in the village. We checked out for timetable for cultural shows while being in the Village. This place is called the Nine Tribes village, which form the majority out from 26 tribes, if not mistaken – the Naruwan, Paiwan, AMei, Tau, just to name a few.
Scenic view in the Cultural Village
I am getting really bored going to Cultural villages because I’ve been to far too many – in Shenzhen, Hangzhou and Guilin and even our own theme parks in Malaysia – Melaka’s A Famosa and Sarawak’s Cultural Village. It’s more or less the same! Anyway, the performers in this village are entertaining lots. The men were running half naked, only clad in loin cloth in the cold winter and did a high energy number on the stage, including jumping into the freezing water!
Then, there were this tribe having some wedding ceremony or something. And the funniest part was when the host asked us if we would like to have initiation ritual on us as well – single ladies to participate and would be blessed finding a good husband. At this stage, Gas Stove got all excited and started waving frantically. She actually wanted them to come and carry me to the stage for the ritual! I refused! I guess the “warriors” also would find me too heavy to be carried to the stage so they pretend they didn’t see Gas Stove. Haha! Eventually, a girl sitting in front opted to go for the ritual, she was carried to center stage, put on the rope swing, got swung a few times for “luck” and her feet were not supposed to touch the land. After that, the warrior would carry her back to her seat among the audience. It was quite funny actually. For more photos of the Cultural Village, check out this blog.
After visiting the park, we were already tired to the max. It has been a long but a rewarding day. We made our way to Ximending, Taipei. Here, we went to have the famous AhChung ming xian. It’s rather delicious – the broth is made from pork intestines and other porky stuff. It tasted somewhat like lor mee with extra vinegar to me. The hot broth is poured over a bowl of mee sua. Since most Taiwan eateries do not have places for you to sit down, the most just having some stools to sit but then it’s too difficult to balance the mee sua while sitting, so we all stood up eating the mee sua. Haha!
Night life at lively Ximending
After a tiring day out, we call it a night at our service apartment – Athena. However, it was rather a disappointing choice to stay because the apartment – even though looked rather presentable in the website (it’s all lies!) – my room’s tv cabinet is infested with dust. I had to spend the night wiping and cleaning the cabinet because I worried for my sensitive nose! The shower room has no curtain so, when you take a shower, you basically flood the entire bathroom! Since I sprained my ankle, I wasn’t really happy to be sleeping on tatami again – it’s difficult to get out of bed when you are lying close to the floor!
The bed sheet looked stained and obviously, the owner didn’t change the bed sheet! We were too tired to even complain, so we slept on the dirty linen! I was scratching all over my body, I think it’s just a psychological reaction! Thank God, there is no bed bug! So people, if you still consider staying here after reading this in my blog, avoid Room 831 at all costs!