My time in Taiwan comes to an end! I meet Taiwanese nuns in Tamshui, treat myself to a few Christmas presents, and then finish off my trip with all-you-can-eat hot pot!
Friday, December 26th, 10:11pm
It’s been another long, eventful day! Yuin-Hua and I started out around 11:00am and grabbed breakfast at a local market. The restaurant we ate at was really well known (despite being small and home-y), and I really enjoyed the delicious tofu and beef. Yum. I am really going to miss good tofu when I go back to the U.S.
After eating, we hopped on the subway and took it to the end of the line to a small town called Tamshui. Yuin-Hua had attended college in Tamshui and wanted to show me all the local sites.
Despite living in Tamshui in the past, Yuin-Hua was almost as lost as I was once we left the station. It had been so long since she’d last visited and so many new buildings had gone up in that time that we ended up a little lost. After a few wrong turns, we eventually found the convent where Yuin-Hua had lived for two years during college (rather than living in the dorms).
When we walked up to the church, a nun was waiting on the path to greet Yuin-Hua. They hugged and greeted each other warmly, then we all went inside and were joined by two other nuns (who remembered Yuin-Hua from her college years). The four of them got to talking, and I was amazed by how much of the conversation I understood even though they spoke entirely in Chinese. I picked up on pretty much everything! The nuns were all over eighty years old, and they were all super sweet and adorable. They gave us homemade Christmas cookies before we headed off back into the city.
After leaving the convent, we saw Yuin-Hua’s old university and visited her younger brother’s apartment before ambling through the dark and lively streets back to the subway station. As we were walking, I picked up the most delicious orange chocolate drink form Coco. Yum. Then it was back to Taipei! By the end of the night, I was truly content and happy. Yuin-Hua is just the sweetest, and I’m really going to be sad to leave Taipei!
Saturday, December 27th, 11:44pm
On my last day in Taipei, I took a Treat Yourself day in order to spend the last of my Taiwanese money (which would be useless back in China). Yuin-Hua and I started out the day with a trip to a famous Youtiao shop for breakfast, and after eating, we headed back to the neighborhood around Yuin-Hua’s apartment to spend the cash that was burning a hole in my pocket.
The first order of business was getting my hair cut (I haven’t even had so much as a trim since leaving America). Then I invested in some new shoes (since my Converse were in a very sorry state), got a cheap manicure, and bought a new sweater. Merry Christmas to me!
Then Yuin-Hua and I met up with her family for all-you-can-eat hot pot! Yuin-Hua’s sister kept my bowl filled with food, and I just sort of went along with what they gave me (not 100% sure what I was eating). I probably didn’t eat enough to warrant the all-you-can-eat price, but I did make my way through a fair amount of expensive ice cream.
Sunday, December 28th, 11:04pm
Well, my time in Taiwan has come to an end! Yuin-Hua and I parted at the airport with smiles and a hug (and a reminder to start taking multivitamins). I’m still sad to leave because I really liked Taiwan. I loved being around family again, but I’m also ready to be back on my own again. On to the next adventure!
Bonus: More pictures from Tamshui and my last days in Taiwan!