up to date

I have not been updating very assiduously, have I… Quick run-down of the past week:

On Sunday I walked the China Hash, which wasn’t much of a walk and more of a “push your way through jungle scrub up and down mountains” experience. It was fun but my knees did not like it. I did remember to ice them straight afterwards though, so the fall-out was not too bad.

Maria behind me looks shocked and horrified — when Relax appeared on the horizon to snap this picture, she thought he was some kind of investigator/agent. She’s lived on the Mainland too long!

On Monday Maria and Alberto left, and I bought my tickets to Hong Kong. Cici and I have been planning our Supermates break with enthusiasm! It’s been 7 months since we last saw each other, and despite talking online every single god-given day, nothing beats sitting together not talking at all.

Tuesday as planned I blasted my room and re-organized my office space. David (aka my new “boss”) is getting a MacBook Air for me to work on, which I have to say I’m pretty excited about. In the interim, I have been trying to restrain the French part of me that is obsessed with stationary and desk organisation…

Wednesday meant lunch with my beloved Catherine, and somehow after lunch, shoe shopping happened. Shoe shopping used to be an addiction of mine; I owned at least 60 pairs when I decided to sell everything a year ago. Since then I have purchased just one pair of Adidas sneakers in London and one pair of leather boots in Florence, which demonstrates the incredible restraint I have developed. However it was time for a pair of summer shoes that were suitable for the heat here and which would provide decent support for my poor knees.

I have been doing a little yoga every morning in order to stretch my hamstrings, which seem to tighten more and more every day. Other than that I am not really exercising though… still, I’m feeling happy overall. Spring in Taipei is like the perfect continental summer in Europe — plenty of sunshine and birdsong, warm breezes, gentle mornings and fun evenings. Once the summer gets here it will be like a furnace, if a furnace is ever damp and sweaty, so I am relishing these perfect days. There’s something about the air, the light, the smell of Taipei at this time of year that I absolutely love (as long as you aren’t anywhere near a stinky tofu stand or the drains of course…).

I leave you with a couple of pictures from the Taiwan tour last week. The quality of my pictures should be drastically improving now, as I asked Alberto to check my camera and turns out I had it stuck on a weird setting:

5:20 sunrise in Chiayi

Lions in Taroko Gorge

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