We make holes in teeth!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Day 4 Pictures

Day 4 is another "meat" day in the picture posting. I took 44 pictures on this day and I picked 21 of them to post. No enhancement today, just some cropping and posting. You can click through each of these pictures to get the full sized Flickr version. Not sure if I'll be able to do that through all of the rest of the pictures because my free account limit is going to fill up before too long. But it resets every month so it may not be an issue since April 1 is right around the corner.

This is the delivery van at 3:30 in the morning driving on the sidewalk in front of the 7-11. The who drove the van popped out, not missing a beat that 3 people, including a whitey and a 2 year old, were there at such an absurd time, and announced, "What a beautiful baby!"

Shortly after we see how they most efficiently deliver newspapers.

Back at the apartment, our daughter sure looks tall here doesn't she? I think Lydia had an inch or less on her. Our kids is tall.

On the road to Lotung, this is basically a Taiwanese cemetery. Not everyone gets a little tomb like this, as there are only so many hillsides in the country and I imagine burying your kin on a hill isn't cheap. But these little displays appear randomly all over the country, and sometimes enormous hills will be filled with these displays that Nat calls "gaudy".

Oh wait, shit, this is just housing. But I'm going to leave that description up there for when I do post the cemetery picture you'll know fully well about it. While I'm here, let me show you what a religious parade looks like, which is very similar to a funeral procession. Death is a big deal to some people, and you know these processions when you see them, obviously. Often you see people getting ready more than you see the actual procession, so it's not strange to see 3 people standing on the side of a country road, dressed as if they're getting ready to head off to the marching band. They're probably waiting for the procession to start or come by.

Anyway, I post this picture to show you how there is housing plastered on the hillside in furious fashion. When you have this many people sometimes you have to find a place to live, stat!

The quality on this one sucks, but I wanted to show another thing you will see randomly. That's a (roughly) 30 foot tall statue of the Buddha on the hillside, standing above a temple. This is also not rare in the country. With Nat's dad driving, blurry pictures were the norm here.

This is a total blur, but this hopefully shows what I consider absolutely random things put up in impossible locations. It's hard to really tell but that white shack is basically on the side of that cliff. I used the expression "cliff" liberally because the gorge isn't that deep. But this thing was just sorta perched there and had Nat and I wondering just what the hell it was. The green thing sorts looks like a car, but it wasn't.

I don't think I mentioned that on the trip down to Lotung we were stopped by 2 police officers who were stopping traffic, right before the road goes under another highway. We sat there for 10 minutes or so, presumably while some important person went by, likely a presidential candidate.

Another picture of the same. Julia was basically screaming on and off the whole time. It makes me think that kids really can sense tension like a smoke detector with smoke.

Another landscape picture just to show what was all around us on the road between Taipei and Lotung. I like how vertical these power lines can get at times. As a reminder this is an active volcanic island. This one could probably use some of my Photoshop Magic, if you call heavy saturation a form of magic.

Just outside the tunnel on the Lotung side, you suddenly find yourself among the rice paddies.

The cool item here is the building halfway up the hill, on the right. This is a school that they just plopped on the side of a hill. In American, NFW they would waste money putting a school up on the hill with the view. That would be littered with million dollar houses. You really don't see many houses on the hills in Taiwan, probably because they eventually get ushered off by the occasional earthquake.

Just another still life-type shot to show you what you see everywhere, houses and rice paddies out in the countryside. And powerline towers.

And then bang, you're in town, where this dilapidated house has old barbed wire along the top of the wall. If you look closely you'll see that the top of the wall is lined with beer bottles that were encased upside down in the cement when the wall was poured, then the bottles were broken off to create a further deterrent to breaking in.

These buildings used to basically be where the rice paddy plantation owners lived, but apparently they've turned into bed & breakfasts. You can see the blue truck in the picture, which is the Taiwanese version of a delivery truck. Size matters here!

Nothing to do with Taiwan so much as I think this is a cute picture of her. Remember mom, click the picture to see a big version.

All 4 generations in 1 picture, Nat's dad, grandmother, self, and daughter. I'm betting against us ever getting a 5th generation picture of the same kind, since Nat's grandmother is 93 now. But really, you never know with these crazy Asians and their 120 year life spans. I wouldn't be totally shocked. I think my mother-in-law just had a spasm when I finished that sentence.

The Taiwanese meter maid, kind of looks like a Stormtrooper. These people can be a little germ insane at times. It's not uncommon to see people walking down the street or shopping with masks, be it homemade or your basic Home Depot mask you might use if you were sanding something.

The exercise bike and the Hello Kitty car. Hard to believe I wasted upload space on this picture huh?

This is a picture in the park outside of where we stayed in Lotung, where all the old men in town go to hang out during the day and look at me as if I'm an octopus, and ask to see my bitch tits.

The living room where we stayed in Lotung. You might notice that both Calvin's apartment and this one are a bit sparse, no carpet, no fluffy couch pillows, and so on. In a country where the humidity is often 90% for months on end, carpets and pillows serve as mold & mildew traps. You would need to air condition your house 24/7/365 if you wanted carpeting.

Determination baby. I'm pretty sure there's some cheese on the other end of that stare, but I don't remember right now. Again, click it for the super sized version.

With that, day 4 wraps up.

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