Thursday August 30th, 2007

Summer camp is finally over! I've since been on holidays and haven't been in front of the computer ... having another week off wouldn't hurt my feelings any.

Monday, a few of us hopped on our scooters and made the trek to Pinglin. A few photos have been posted in Summer of 2007.

The week has been spent running errands and being poolside. It's been relaxing ... very rarely do I take time off in Taiwan. The weekend calls for rain which could be a bit unfortunate, but it also might make for a nice excuse to stay indoors with the cats and some movies.

I will leave you with a video from our summer camp farewell party. Murray, one of our teachers, wrote a musical drama titled Sons and Daughters. The kids did well and I think the parents liked it. Enjoy!

Monday August 20th, 2007

Some lines taken directly from the Taipei Times in regards to Typhoon Sepat:

+ cutting power to nearly 95,000 homes, injuring twenty four people and forcing more than 1,000 others to evacuate

+ Four people suffered minor injuries in Taipei after being blown off their motorcycles while one man was wounded by falling rocks in Kaohsiung

+ 1,785 people had to evacuate their homes in mountain villages that were threatened by mudslides

+ Several vehicles were crushed by a falling billboard in Taipei, scaffolding collapsed on the outskirts of the city and in mountainous areas, workers battled to clear uprooted trees and rocks blocking roads

+ radius reached 250km

+ maximum wind speed near the center was measured at 126kph

+ Strong wind and torrential rain had damaged about 2,500 hectares devoted to fruit and vegetables in Hualien, with 1,340 hectares of cropland completely destroyed

+ Pomelo growers sustained the heaviest losses, with around 1,040 hectares of pomelo orchards damaged

+ Watermelons, bananas and leafy vegetables were also seriously damaged

+ An AFA release said there are more than 4,500 tonnes of vegetables stored in temperature-controlled warehouses that can be gradually released into the market to absorb consumer demand

Things have been getting back to normal ... I spent some time today clearing one of the balconies free from leaves and dirt. I still have one more to go ... tomorrow perhaps as it's a day off.

Sunday August 19th, 2007

The typhoon has passed, the rain and wind have stopped. I uploaded a few new photos to Summer of 2007. --------->

Off to rugby practice ... it's going to be muddy!

Hang on to your hats ...

Saturday August 18th, 2007

The wind has been howling since late last night ... rain has been pounding at the windows. The screens on my windows have been blown out of place ... my balcony is flooded and the furniture out there is being tossed about. As I look out of my window, I can see trees that have been torn out of the ground, branches broken. I wonder what it's like on the south part of the island. I can only imagine it's getting destroyed. It's kinda scary what mother nature has the ability of doing.

Friday August 17th, 2007

The calm before the storm ... at least we are showing on the map ... for the moment.

Thursday August 16th, 2007

The email I received from the Canadian Trade Office today was this:

We have issued a travel advisory for Typhoon SEPAT.

Typhoon SEPAT is currently a Category 5 Super Typhoon. While it is expected to decrease in intensity as it makes landfall in Taiwan in the early morning of
Saturday, August 18th, we would still like to remind Canadians in Taiwan to be
extra vigilant and to make necessary preparations as the storm approaches.
Canadians should also monitor local media and follow the advice of the local

Should you any questions or if you require assistance ... and so on. I knew I should have stopped for groceries on my way home. I'm going to stop on my way home from work tomorrow and the shelves will be empty ... no fresh fruit or veggies to be seen. It's not a good time to have an empty fridge.

And there she be ...

Tomorrow is going to be a wet, wet day.

Tuesday August 14th, 2007

It's been quite rainy the past few days. A big tropical storm has caused flooding in many areas of central and southern Taiwan. Trains have stopped running, highways have been closed. There have been reports of landslides with one death so far. Three thousand tourists are currently trapped on Green Island as all flights and sailings have been canceled. My friend's girlfriend happens to be one of those people. She said there is no food left on the island ... the grocery stores and 7-11s having been picked clean. With typhoon 聖帕 on its way, I wonder if there is going to be more delay and what will happen if there is.

Green Island is a small volcanic island off the eastern coast of Taiwan. I've not been there yet, it's certainly on my list. I always seem to leave the country when I have a vacation. I'd head there during my time off but it seems the rest of the country will be on holidays that same week ... makes for an already booked island.

I just finished watching the movie Bridge to Terabithia. I really enjoyed it and would recommend checking it out.

Three more full days of work and then it's back to smooth sailing. The last day of the semester is Friday. I'll have one more week of summer camp, which will take up 15 hours of my week ... and then ... holidays. I'm trying to decide if I want to cancel my language exchange, my Chinese teacher and my privates so that the week will be all mine.

I'm seeing a few day trips on the scooter, heading through mountains, making my way to the ocean for a swim. Typhoon season best be on pause. I have a camera that's dying to be used and some skin in need of sunshine.

Tomorrow will present another long day ... the countdown begins.

Three ...

Tuesday August 7th, 2007

I awoke this morning to sounds of wind, rain and thunder. I recalled seeing sandbags at the doors yesterday which told me that a typhoon must be in the area. It's heading over the southern tip, so it shouldn't be too bad ... just wet.

Three weeks of summer camp left. I am enjoying it, but my free time is going to be even more enjoyed ... once it arrives. I have a lot of errands to run during my first (almost) week of holidays. The second week is all mine ... days on end with nothing to do but relax ... hopefully poolside.

The new semester starts September 3rd which means teaching another year of Level 3 and then back to a Level 1 class. My hours will drop to 18 a week which might not be enough. I have a 2 hour private which puts me back at 20 but I'm thinking another 4 or 5 hours would be better. I'm saving up for some options which aren't going to come cheap. I will look for a few new privates, starting September. Seems there's work to be found, it's just a matter of finding some that work with my schedule and is somewhat close to home.

In three months time ... I will find myself in Ho Chi Minh City with my mom ... I hope she knows what she's getting herself into! We have 20 days to get from Ho Chi Minh to Hanoi.

If one were to travel by train direct, it would take about 30 hours. I've been reading a bit here and there in my guide book and I'm growing more excited with each passing day ... my only wish was for more time ... 20 days is only going to be a tease of the goodies that could be had.

It all really comes down to how one can make money without having to give up what they consider free time. The world is this huge playground just waiting to be tramped on.