Saturday, 27 October 2007

Election time in Australia

Here's a link for the Aussies out there, those into old Chinese propaganda films, and fans of a bit o' good ol' Chinglish. I thought this was pure gold, I only found out about it because it made the international news page in the China Post, one of the english language rags here in Taiwan.

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

At The Market

My partner Jenny and I often attend creative and festival markets here in Taiwan, Jen makes jewellery and I focus on antique items. Here's a shot of us at a market last weekend held at the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall.

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Signs Part 4

Seeing as no words here are being used as expletive, I'm confident nobody will be offended..............
I need to point out here (after having offended somebody) that this picture (unlike most on this blog) was not taken by me, it is from a hospital in Mainland China. As I am living in Taiwan I don't want to give the impression that the Chinglish, while it is alive and well in Taiwan, is as bad as this...........

Chinglish Part 5

Makes sense.......

Monday, 15 October 2007

Taipei 101

A view of Taipei 101 from my balcony. Currently the tallest completed building in the world, however an as yet unfinished building in Dubai is already taller, but isn't expected to be finished until next year. The view from the 88th floor observation deck is impressive, as are the giant balls suspended by cables near the top which serve as earthquake dampeners. There is a luxury goods shopping mall in the first few lower floors, popular with brand obsessed Taiwanese and wealthy expats alike, and an imported goods supermarket in the basement, where you can even buy VB beer and vegemite.........

View from my balcony

Here's a shot looking out from my balcony, showing the street below and apartment buildings opposite. In the top left corner is Taipei 101

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Taiwan's National Day

Today was Taiwan's national day, as it falls on october 10th it's commonly known here as Double Ten Day. As a show of Taiwan's ability to defend itself against a Chinese attack there was a big military parade as part of the celebrations, the first of it's kind to be held in 16 years. I've always associated these big parades with dictatorships and communist countries, so thought it would be a rare oppotunity to witness such a spectical. Upon arriving at the area near the presidential palace I found the road blocked by riot police and barricades, where me and many Taiwanese were dissapointed to learn that the performances were for invited guests only. I decided to hang around all the same, and my patience didn't go unrewarded. There was an amazing flyover of columns of choppers and attack helecopters, jet fighters, spyplanes, transport aircraft. A little later a large variety of military vehicles drove out from the parade area in columns, including many amphibious vehicles, tanks, rocket and missile launch vehicles, large missiles, frogmen, unmanned drone aircraft, etc. I'm not normally into this kind of thing but it really was impressive.

Sunday, 7 October 2007

Surveying The Damage

Typhoon Krosa was a surly ol' bitch, causing mudslides, flooding, uprooting trees, blowing stuff about that shouldn't be blown about. My apartment has metal sliding doors at it's entrance, and the roof overhangs by about two metres, so normally whan it's raining I can stand out there and not get wet. Yesterday the wind was so strong that water was spraying in through every tiny gap between the doors and doorframes, not just at the bottom, but all up the sides and at the top as well! I had towels trying to block the gaps, but the water still found a way to blow in. The wind howled liked I've not heard wind howl before. This morning I want out for a walk. It was a perfectly calm morning, as the typhoon has now moved away from the island, on toward mainland China, but rain continued to fall, as it does now 15 hours later. The roads were a sea of green, strewn with leaves and branches blown from trees. Many trees have been uprooted. In parts of northern Taiwan more the 1000 (one thousand!) millimetres of rain have fallen, so far....... meanwhile, more than one million people in mainland China have been evacuated from areas in Krosa's path.

Friday, 5 October 2007

It's heading this way!

Typhoon Krosa On The Way

It's typhoon time again, this time it's called Krosa. The government has announced that there is no work or school tomorrow. There was some criticsm of the government after typhoon Wipha passed through, it's effects were not as strong as feared so many were upset at the day off, claiming that it cost them a great deal of money in lost earnings, and some students and teachers had to make up the lost day on the following saturday. Krosa looks pretty strong so far, it's a category 4, and most tracking projections have it making landfall on the island, unlike Whipha which passed by just north of Taiwan. So far it looks as though it will make landfall on the northern tip of Taiwan, or just skim the coast, around 3am sunday morning, which puts Taipei pretty much right in its path, but these beasties don't always do what people think they will. Nevertheless, saturday and sunday look pretty rough around these parts........

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Taiwanese Moon Festival Barbeque

Here's a shot of Alice and Killer, enjoying the traditional Taiwanese moon festival barbeque at Orange Cafe in Shilin District...........................