I traveled from opposite ends of Taiwan today (south to north)! Traveling took a little longer than anticipated, but it makes sense. I left Jialeshuei at 9:50 am and arrived around 7:30 pm, and it took another 30 minutes to find my hostel. I caught a bus from my hostel that took me to Hengcuen (20 minutes), waited for five minutes (perfect timing!), took a bus from Hengcuen to Kaohsiung (a little over two hours), ate lunch, took a bus from Kaohsiung to Taipei (about 5.5 hrs). I’ve become pretty adept at using buses.. never had much experience with those before, just trains.
I went out in search of food, and ended up getting green onion pancake. I’ve had so many recently, but I probably should change that habit because I don’t think they’re the healthiest. They are delicious, though, and I know the name of it in Chinese, so it’s the most convenient thing to order (that and dumplings). I really need to increase my food vocabulary!
While I was waiting for the pancake to cook, an older lady came up to the cook and started talking to him. He said to her that I was from the US (in Chinese), to which I affirmatively nodded my head - and she was happy to discover that I understood Chinese. I ended up talking with her for 10 minutes. I really like these random conversations! I’m always amazed at how much people share about their lives. She came from Burma to Taiwan thirty-two years ago. She has four nephews who still live in Burma, and they are all doctors (at least one of them is a surgeon). She was genuinely interested in me, which was pretty cool (and different than in America, where most people wouldn’t strike up a conversation in that situation). I get so many compliments being a white-looking person in Taiwan who can speak Chinese (even though I tell them that I’m half).. it’s really different. I’m still trying to wrap my head around it.