So today we drove home from Tainan to Hsinchu. We saw an old Dutch fort and a beautiful temple in Tainan, the temples are the most beautiful there! Then we had a tortuous trip home. Vincie had pretty much had it for this car trip. He fussed and fussed on the way home, we finally had to turn the car seat to rear facing and I had to entertain him all the way from Taichung home. As soon as he got home, he delighted in hanging out the Ms. Liu, Mr. Hong. He hadn’t eaten any solids for days but as soon as Ms. Liu gave him a huge wafer cracker, he promptly ate it with a huge grin on his face and asked for another. Ha!

My Uncle Mike and his family

On Thursday, we left Hsinchu and visited Tai Chung and as the Natural History Museum’s orchid garden. They also had very large fish in their aquarium. Then we drove to Jay-yi where Bob gave a talk about his career in philosophy and music. We checked into their guest house and had dinner at the campus steak house. Jeremy spoke to a gentleman who went to school in Iowa and served in the Taiwan military for 25 years and is a specialist on things which do not exist. The next day we drove to Kenting, on the way we stopped at Kaoshioung. It was raining so we didn’t stop for long, but we did eat at Uncle Bob’s. In Kenting, we checked into the Youth Activity Center and it was really, really cool. All these swallow tail buildings in the traditional chinese buildings. On Saturday we ate breakfast in the canteen and saw my uncle! Mom’s brother and wife and their youngest child. It was really nice. We toured the aquarium together and saw the fire pits (where they sold roasted eggs) and one of the gates around the town. That evening was really long, Vincent had been having a low fever and the effort to get him to sleep was titanic. Today we drove to Tainan. We saw a parade, young girls, free tea and walked around to the Confucius Temple. The weather was beautiful.

Went to Taipei to pick up the Bonser’s van. Although it seats 7, it has no space for luggage. It’s actually quite tiny. It has a DVD player and a rear view camera so you can watch your butt as you go in reverse.

A Taiwan Christmas

Christmas! Woke up late and went to RT-Mart to get some treats, mainly ice cream. Then we went with the realtors and Helen to an all-you-can-eat restaurant where they had this towering, steaming hot pot contraption. Then we came home and invited them all plus Droopy and Olivia over for gifts and stockings. We got a bowling set for Vincie and played bowling. Then naps all around. Then we got buns for dinner and played Trivial Pursuit. Merry Christmas to all!

Today we went to the Nan-liao and the Science Park to see UMC. We had lunch with Jeremy’s Chinese teacher, Annie, at her favorite restaurant. They serve this delicious won-ton-like dish. I’m eating so much with the family here, snacking my way through all the sights. After lunch we went climbing on 18-point mountain. The weather was really nice and comfortable. I also saw a loose-rock acupuncture path that has inspired a garden design for our future house. After the climb, we went home for naps and a visit to the realtors. Ordered out from the Chinese restaurant next door and started decorating our walls with the Christmas tree lights. Happy Christmas Eve!

Katherine, Bob and Ben showed up today at 8 am. We spent the day puttering around Hsinchu. Ran some errands, first to the bank, then the post office. I introduced my whole family to my yoga class. Then we went to the temple for lunch and kept eating and eating. Afternoon was shopping and napping and then we went out to dinner.

Today we went to get Jeremy’s new glasses. They are black-rimmed and got a negative response from Ms. Liu when she saw them. We also bought some Xmas decoration supplies. I’m sewing stocking together.