Thursday, February 22, 2007

day with the dads

This was our last full day in Tainan. My mom needed a break from all the fun so she stayed at the hotel and rested. Somebody’s dad was able to join us and was also able to borrow a car so that we could travel farther from home.

We started out enjoying a very traditional Tainan street breakfast—breakfast served at one of the many street-side restaurants. Apparently this one is one of Somebody’s dad’s favorite. And it was, well, I’m sure the locals find it lovely. Breakfast consisted of rice shaped into a pyramid and then topped with peanuts, sauce, and cilantro. I hated it. The side of fish soup for breakfast did not help things. The only way I was able to keep putting bites into my mouth was to make sure that I had some cilantro in each bite to cover up the taste of whatever it was that I disliked so much. Somebody ordered a different breakfast. Why? Because HE didn’t like the one his dad ordered for us. Uh, thanks for the heads up on that one.

After breakfast we drove around to some larger temples and were also able to stop on a bridge right on the coast. Do you see China behind us? It’s right there.

This temple, I think the largest Matsu temple in Tainan, was set away from other buildings—all the better to appreciate its grandeur. Also all the better to appreciate the karaoke stage that was set up out front. Those Chinese are not shy about their love of singing (and, surprisingly, voluntarily listening to) bad karaoke.

Here we have a ball in a ball in a ball—all carved from the same piece of stone. I was fascinated with these and made Somebody stick his hand in every single one we saw.

I don’t remember what we had for lunch (probably fish soup. Yes, yes, it is all coming back to me now. It was fish soup. And rice.) What I do remember is that this girl here was washing the dishes that were being used in the little street restaurant. Convenient? Yes. Hygienic? Not so much.

Things I want to always remember:

* Realizing just how close Taiwan was to mainland China and sensing for the first time why these people feel a very real threat of invasion. Some people might call it reunification, but to Somebody and his family, it will certainly be invasion.

Things I will never forget:

* Trying to eat a breakfast that kind of made me want to vomit just so I wouldn’t disappoint my father-in-law.

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