Tuesday, January 1, 2013

On doing New Year's right (finally)

This is our third New Year's eve/day spent overseas.

Our first was on an overnight train from Rome to Paris. In a six person bunk car. With a snorer (who was also naked). 

Our second was on the (wrong) bus from Malaysia to Thailand. We were dropped off in a seedy border town at midnight. With no reservations. And paid $40 USD to stay in a room with a rat.

This year, however, was perfect.

Not that those first two weren't; I mean, they offer us plenty of opportunities to laugh... but this year's experience was so much less painful.

In fact, it was just plain fun!

Here's a look at what we were up to in our 30 hours in Taipei:

Sean had heard of this great bouldering gym in New Taipei City (not to be confused with Taipei) so we embarked on quite the long metro journey to this random, middle of nowhere place and proceeded to walk down completely desolate, dilapidated streets in the pitch black at 9p.m. Suddenly, there was a pig slaughter farm and then... the gym. Bizarre. Suffice it to say, I will not be eating pork anytime soon. Sean loved it though.

Then we rushed and hopped back on the MRT, hoping we would make it to Taipei 101 in time for the fireworks. To say the MRT was crowded would be an overwhelming understatement.

We made it with 30 minutes to spare so we wandered around the night market. Sean bought food. I bought hot pink, glowing, polka dot ears. I know, you wish you had a pair.

We pushed and shoved (quite literally) our way to the front of 101. The crowd and TV crews were immense.

And then it started. The fireworks were spectacular and actually created a beat. We made it back to our funky hotel around 2a.m. after fighting and stampeding our way on to the MRT.

The next day, we checked out and went in search for Bongos, a great expat restaurant our friend Conor brought us to earlier in the year.

We asked for a table for two but were given an extra special table mate: this adorable snoozy feline. She was in Sean's chair so we had to get another.

We ate (real) salad, delicious poutine, and Mexican food.

Then we braved the rain and hopped on the MRT headed way out of town toward the rolling hills.

From there, we rode gondolas through the rain and mist.


Here is a video of the Taipei 101 fireworks:


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