Lakyn and I woke up on January 1st, 2015, ready to go on our first trip of the new year! That afternoon, we boarded the bullet train bound for Taichung. Taichung is a city in the west of Taiwan. After taking the bullet train, attempting to buy tickets back (multiple times), and finding the correct bus to take us into the city, we were tired and hungry. Mark (our Canadian friend living in Taichung) brought us to his favorite noodle place and his favorite bar. The bar was cool because we dont have bars in Luodong and the owner came and sat with us! Mark said he had never met him before so it was really cool. And he brought us the best edamame I have ever had (leave it to an Asian bar to serve edamame of course….). We called it a night and I could not have been more thankful for bed that night.
The next day we slept in and then decided to explore Taichung. Our first stop: the place that claims to be the inventor of bubble tea!!!!! SO COOL. Now, let me tell you, when I got here, bubble tea was the last thing I would EVER want. But…it grew on me. So much so that I get one almost every week! It has to be from my favorite place in Su-Ao though…they make superior bubble tea by far. Anyway, the three of us went and sat on Japanese style tatami mats and got bubble tea from the inventor of bubble tea himself.
It was pretty good…but no Su-Ao bubble tea!!! Still exciting though. Then we wandered around Taichung, stumbling upon a botanical garden and…..AN INDIAN RESTAURANT! WOOO!!!!!!!! Ethnic food is few and far between here in Taiwan. Your options are Chinese food, Chinese food, or McDonalds. The idea of curry and na’an was SO exciting. We all agreed we must go and it was so very worth it. It was delicious!! And a great change from Chinese food. After we were completely stuffed, we went home and went to bed, ready for the day tomorrow!
The next day, we woke up early and headed to Nantou to go to Sun Moon Lake. If you Google what to do in Taiwan, more than likely, Sun Moon Lake will come up near the top of the list. It’s the biggest lake in Taiwan and very very famous. It was really beautiful but I think its more famous than it should be. It’s extremely touristy, so the peaceful lake is consumed by huge commercial yachts. Everywhere you walk there are people asking if you want to take their boat company for a ride. Once we got out of the main area though it got better. We started to walk around the lake and it was much more scenic and calm. We didnt get all the way around (it’s HUGE!) but it was a fun day anyway! I’m glad I saw it…but in my opinion….definitely overrated. That night, we went back to our Indian place to eat more curry!!! We knew it would be a long time until we had it again so we needed to get our fill! It was just as good the second time (:
That night we ventured out to the Fengjia Night Market. I thought the Luodong Night Market was cool….it’s nothing compared to this! It was massive and more people than I think even live in Luodong! Then, the three of us (Mark, Lakyn and I) made a pinky promise we would soon regret. Lakyn and I have a bucket list of all the things we want to do and see before we leave here. One of the things on the list is to eat “stinky tofu”. Yes, it is literally translated as stinky. And mom, dad, Melissa, Jamo, and Terean…..when you come, you will see (ahem smell) why. You always know when stinky tofu is within a mile…it SMELLS. STRONG. and BAD. Like rotten eggs mixed with manure mixed with sweaty gym socks. You think I’m exaggerating….just wait til you smell it. But, everyone here LOVES it, swears by it, says its great. So, it’s been on the bucket list….just sitting there getting ignored. But, that night at Fengjia, the three of us pinky promised to eat the stinky tofu. Luckily, the tofu we found was fried instead of steamed, so the outer layer actually didnt taste so bad. It wasnt until my second bite that I really got all that…..interesting….flavor. Glad I did it, will NEVER do it again (:
As you can see from our terrified faces above, we were not enthused about the tofu, bu we ate lots of fresh strawberries and a frozen chocolate covered banana to get rid of the taste. Everyone here always asks me if Ive eaten stinky tofu and I can finally say yes!!!! SEE PROOF BELOW! (The bite you see is just the first one…it gets grosser!)