Bracknell on Steroids • The Lost World • “Unexpected Tower In The Bagging Area” • The Eighth Wonder of the World • Another Asian City, Another Old Temple • Scaling the Elephant’s Back • Water Cooler Washout • The Best of Asia
Taiwan – what the hell was I doing in Taiwan? Of all places?
As a country Taiwan had ranked pretty low on my most-desired destinations – as it probably does for you. That’s if you can even tell it apart from Thailand.
My mental image of the place was of an enormous industrial park, like Slough or Bracknell on steroids. It was the kinda place where I imagined people got really excited – tumescent, even – about aluminium siding and copper foil.
However, this October I had a few days free, and a little money to spend, and the desire to go somewhere new. As much of South-East Asia was being ravaged by Typhoon Mangkhut, that pretty much put all beach or outdoors-y destinations out of the running. I decided on a short city break – you at least have options if you’re stuck in a city in the rain.
And it just so happened that the only city that fulfilled my criteria of being a) inexpensive (both to fly there and within the city itself), b) different and c) not obscenely far away was Taipei.
Literally two days before, I thought ‘sod it’ and booked an early morning flight. At worst it would only be four days. If I could kill time for four days in – say – Vientiane, I could kill time for four days anywhere. Even a colossal industrial park in the East China Sea.