Transit Taipei to Hsinchu

Today rode the high speed rail about 35 minutes from the central Taipei Station to Hsinchu. The train is very nice and speeds along at its highest rate at about 185mph. I think we got up to a bit less than that but its a beautiful ride especially with reserved seats in the business section. Hsinchu is windy so I think its known as that here. People wear warmer clothes here like big jackets or sweaters yet its not really any colder. It’s just the wind blowing. I have 5 days here to wander around starting tomorrow so basically will just go each day as I like and then eat dinner, drink some beer, and reflect on the day.

I ate dinner at this very nice restaurant owned by a Canadian that I found. The Park Restaurant is more expensive but I figure you get what you pay for in this game and I had a delicious sandwich and a vanilla milkshake. The owner came in so we chatted about living in Taiwan and his travels throughout Southeast Asia for awhile. It’s always interesting to only be at a place for a week like this since the chances of me going back may be less given the other places I may want to try here. There are some “chop houses” which are steak places to try, a few different noodle houses, and other places to find. I paid for breakfasts in the hotel so each morning will take what they offer.

Hsinchu does not have the sheer number of attractions as a Taipei so the type of wandering changes for me and becomes much more random where I just go each day. I know how fast the days will go by before going on to the next city. Then the next city and then the final city before heading back to Taipei for a few nights.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. I have days to let roll by and let them go as slowly as possible with no interruptions for places to see or go. I intend on finding nothing at all but still seeing a few things. It’s my best bet for wandering. Once I lock into things my fear is I would then grade the visits as failures or successes if I hit the places or tried to do it all in one day.

Hsinchu leads to Taichung which leads to Tainan. Cities in front of me and a month in Taipei behind. I got a final SIM card for a month of unlimited data which they do here easily. They do require two forms of ID which is a bit unusual and one has to be a passport. Luckily my California drivers license is still good. But the act of getting the SIM card here is to walk in, take a number, tell the clerk what I want and they do the activation and check. I walk out with unlimited data on the phone. I believe I have a phone number as well but I never use the local calling.

Today seemed a longer day because I was up earlier to get some things done like shipping a package to Vietnam for my L. That took about 30 minutes at the post office in New Taipei City. It’s not difficult but they want the form in a certain way with signatures and then they want the destination address clearly written on the forms. Now its my evening in my hotel room and the room is very nice. I had a basic airbnb apartment that worked well but having the hotel room is nice too.

Tomorrow its breakfast here and then some kind of wandering somewhere. More pictures with the iPhone. More memories taken. More moments spent. I’ll be writing here of a city I have never been in which is exciting to me. It’s new streets, new parks, a walking park I heard of today to go see. I have a week. Let’s see what I don’t do :–)