Beitou and back

I got up early this morning to travel to Beitou (pronounced bay-tow) to look at some office furniture advertised in, hoping it would be a viable alternative to IKEA’s offerings. I walked 20 minutes to the bus stop and rode the 285 for 55 minutes, past the airport, the guy burning “money” in a kettle on the side of the road, the baseball park with its super-sized bat and ball sculptures, and an ENORMOUS Temple sitting on a hillside, to the northern edge of Taipei. Beitou is known for its hot springs smelling of sulpher much like Bumpus Hell in Lassen National Park in northern California and Glen Ivy hot springs in Corona. (That odiferous fun will have to wait for another weekend as will the Folk Art Museum.) NOTE: Look for a funny photo of something I saw on Shipai Road, to be posted shortly. Here it is; check out this guy back his backhoe out of a truck WITHOUT a ramp!

I was waiting for the truck to tip over!

I watched people waiting at the bus stops, getting on the bus and registering  that there was a non-asian sitting in a seat, sitting quietly (as the signs on the bus politely request), and then get off the bus to go on with their day  – they all seemed to be biding their time. An hour into my bumpy trip up north I got to thinking: the locals are so creative and resilient. I wonder what they could accomplish if so much of their time wasn’t spent on getting from one place to another, taking out the trash, and getting their clothes clean?! And then: perhaps there is something to be gained by focusing on the journey rather than the destination. Your thoughts?

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As for me, I will take the road less travelled…