Sunday, 27 February 2011

Taiwan and India tour part 1

Well, I finally got my ass to a computer. So here's what I can remember of the last 3 weeks in the next 15 minutes.  Here goes.


This place is the land of the three s's.  That would be seven eleven's, scooters and s.a.r.s. masks.  These masks are everywhere, i dont know if they are safety conscious or big mortal combat fans.  Dumbest thought I had while i was in Taipei: "man this place is like china town, except its all china town". Idiot.

Taipei was pretty amazing, quite clean, really safe and the people are nice.  English is non existent which made it a bit hard for my uncultured self. Basically the only thing i wanted to see for sure in Taipei was Taipei 101 which was the tallest building in the world up until a couple years ago.  This place was different from North American cities in that they don't have a downtown core and then everything spreads out around it like a dartboard.  Things are all over the place.  I mention this only because for the first two days I thought another building was taipei 101.  There was pretty tall building that i could see around my hotel but i only had it pegged at being 20-25% bigger than living shangri-la in Vancouver(which was bang on, booya!), it wasn't until i saw this beast of a building looming in the distance that i realized I was dead wrong.  I checked the wiki on these buildings and shangri is 600 something feet, the imposter 101 was 800 something and taipei 101 is actually 1600 something feet! I saw it in the distance and thought it wouldn't take too long to walk there, it took me a thigh burning hour to get there and.  Anyways, the bulk of my time was spent in this rad park where I would hang out and whatnot and check out people doing tai-chi, wing chung and whatnot. It was a great spot. On my last night of taipei I realized that I was doing my Crane thing and not taking pictures so I went to take some terrible nighttime pics of my favorite park.  As I was walking to the park I heard echos in my head of someone who told me that the park was one of those parks where if a guys is feeling amorous and wants the company of another man, he goes there.  I went anyway, lets just say i got a couple pictures and got the hell out of there. 


Delhi, days 1-3

Well i gotta admit I was pretty pumped when I made my way into Delhi and how naive I was.  I thought I knew how it was going to be and in a way I did but that doesn't mean shit, you still gotta acclimatise  to all the craziness.  I thought that because i work on a construction site and have to use dirty porta-johns that i'd be well prepared, well it was a bit of a shock.  The driving is absolutely crazy.  I've actually gotten used to it though and it works and is pretty entertaining.  The poverty is everywhere, it wasn't that bad until it got in my face when a lady stuck her baby in the window of my car and asked for money.  The car wasn't going anywhere 'cuz of the traffic and when i tried to roll up the window she basically left the kids arm in there.  Lesson learned here: Keep small bills on you so if need be you can get these people out of your face. When I got to my hotel I didnt leave for the rest of the day.  There was so much going on I felt I would be eaten alive.  I finally ventured out just after sunrise the next day before everyone was out so I could get my bearings.  After walking around a while and telling all the shoe shiners that I didnt need a shine I ran into another one of these guys.  I said no but he was real persistent and kept pointing at my shoe and saying "chit".  Finally i looked at my shoe and noticed a big pile of shit on top, disgusting.  I had him clean it up and went back to my hotel.  Damn Delhi.  It wasn't till i was sitting in my room that it crossed my mind that that was the dudes scam and he probably chucked that shit on there,  cuz i didnt step in it, it was all on top.


Agra, home to the taj mahal.  This place kinda sucks too.  Its basically a tourist town and that is it so being a tourist place the people are in your face like crazy.  The Red fort in agra was amazing though.  This place is where the guy who made the taj actually lived.  The taj was ok, it was a bit like a new years party. High expectations, little payoff.  Also i'd seen it a billion times in pictures and what you see in pics about sums it up.

Tordi Garh

We took a bus for a couple hours then do a 3 hour bumpy as hell jeep ride to get to this out of the way village.  This place was amazing.  The hotel was 1/4 of the residence of the ruler of the area that had been converted.  The descendants still live there and run the show.  This place was cool because people weren't asking you for crap the whole time and apparently thats how they want to keep it.  One of the guys in our group was given crap for handing a kid a lolipop.  It was cool to see the village life style and the setting was amazing.  All of us got mobbed by the kids.  They all wanted their picture taken and then to have you show it back to them.  I didnt have my camera out so the just asked me questions.
Them-"Where you from?"
Them-"How tall are you?"
Me-"Six foot one. As tall as that guy"
Them-"How big is your chest?"

Apparently these kids are into wrestling which is why they asked.


This place was pretty good.  Kinda hectic again but I'm getting more used to the whole India deal so it's not too bad.  There was a really good fort here which I didn't take pictures of(sorry katie) and I saw two pickpockets get nabbed in the train station.  Apparently the get hit with a bamboo stick.


Better than Jaipur.  Bit more relaxed and we saw another fort which was actually better than the one is Jaipur and i took pictures!  This is the place where they have the famous blue city where all the homes are painted blue.  Looked pretty fantastic from on top of Meherangarh fort. 

Nimaj Bagh.

Another village.  Not much doing there. Got to see a peacock for the first time.  Apparently there a bit of a scourge.  Your not allowed to kill them and they eat the crops.  The had a bit of a workout set there which I actually used.  I had done much physically except walk and stuff so i figured i'd give it a go.  In the middle of my "sesh"  I realized it was Eric's birthday, weird.  Happy birthday buddy.


Anybody see the James Bond movie Octopussy?  Well this is the city where this takes place. Of the "pur"'s this was my favorite.  Good place for shopping and the people don't bother you as much.  This place is sometimes called the "venice of the east".  Again the james bond movie: Remember the palace on the lake that octopussy stayed at? Well we went for a boat tour around it.  That part was kind of underwhelming but the part where the city is on they shore of the lake was cool as hell, definitely had shades of venice.


We took a sleeper train and went back to delhi.  This time wasn't as bad. I think im better off than I was before.  I still want to get the heck out of here though.

Now I am in Rishikesh.  I went to Haridwar, spent 2 days there then came here.  I needed to go somewhere where i could have some peace and that is what im doing now.  Wont be much to report on for a while I'm assuming but well see what happens.  Anyways hope all is well with all my friends, I miss you all. And a happy birthday to big Ad's as well. Wow that took longer that 15 minutes, more like 50 and I didn't check it over though so.......