Well I know it has been a while since I wrote an entry but that is because I have been so busy!! And, my friends, this is the last entry. I leave to go back to Australia tomorrow morning very, very early. But today I will update you on my trip to Jioufen and Jinguashi mountain with Bella and my days in Hsinchu with Miss Yang, Paulina and Candy.
School finished at midday on the the 20th and straight afterwards I went with Bella to visit some amazing places called Jioufen and Jinguashi mountain. At Jinguashi there is an old mine and some old buildings, and a very cool mountain called Teapot Mountain because it has a rock on top shaped like a teapot!!! To get here we had to drive quite high up, it is amazing to me that so high up there are still 4-storey high apartment buildings and a massive school and public buses that drive up narrow winding roads. I have no idea how on earth the drivers manage to drive those massive vehicles on such tiny roads up so high! My dad is a bus driver, so Dad.... there is your next challenge! :)
We went inside the mine tunnel and also touched a massive block of solid gold. It's worth a bucketload. A funny thing that happened was some random boy from Hong Kong came up and asked if he could have a photo with me!! I said ok and thought his friend would just take the photo and that would be that. But no! His whole group of friends all whipped out their cameras too, like 10 of them, and clicked away!!!! I felt even more famous than I did at school!!
so so so funny. I will be sad to go back to Australia where I am not treated like a film star :(
After Jinguashi we went to Jioufen which is beautiful. The view of the coast and the mountains is really really stunning. And the town itself is so so so cute, all perched up on the mountain side with the Old Street and all its shops. But still with tall apartment buildings!! To me little towns don't usually have tall buildings but I guess that makes it more unique. I bought some cool things and, surprise surprise, ate some more food :) Thank you Bella and her husband for a very fun day :)
The next day I went with the teachers at school to Hsinchu. First we went to a restaurant for lunch where the food was Hakka-style. It was very tasty, especially the pumpkin slice, and then we had a DIY dessert. We made some tea using a mortar and pestle, and some kind of sticky rice balls with sugar and peanuts. It was very cool.
After lunch we hiked a mountain. Not a really big mountain but big enough that I felt extremely sweaty and tired afterwards!! It was a fairly warm day so it was good weather for the hike. I took some very pretty photos, because some of the trees were still in autumn-mode and had red and orange leaves. We visited a pretty park but some of the things weren't open because they only open on the weekend.
After this we went to Hsinbei (I guess that's how you spell it in English) and had dinner with Miss Yang's sister at a really nice restaurant called Tang Bistro. The food was very tasty. We also went to a great bakery and Miss Yang bought me a very nice present of nougat. Thank you!!
We stayed overnight at a beautiful hotel called Lakeshore in Hsinchu which had a massive buffet breakfast and then in the morning we went to the lake in Hsinchu and then to the glass museum. I really liked the glass museum, it had some really cool stuff. I especially liked the tiger exhibit for the upcoming Chinese Year of the Tiger where I learnt that five is a lucky number and the glass statues were really cool, very colourful and creative. We looked around at the shops and visited another bakery that is like 100 years old, where I bought something that was very tasty but I cannot for the life of me remember what it is called!! It was sticky rice with a pink edge and something dark in middle and it was very sweet. Paulina if you read this can you please leave me a message telling me what it is called because I would like to know!!!
Thankyou Miss Yang, Candy and her daughter May, and Paulina, I had an excellent time and you are very generous.
Well here is where I must stop. This is the end of my time with Wu-Xing School and tomorrow I leave Taiwan. Taiwan is not really a tourist destination for Western visitors, but I will recommend it to people because I think it is an undiscovered gem and definitely a destination for those who love food :)
And I will definitely try to come back :)
Zai jian, wo de pengyou :)