IKEA comes through

Amazing: IKEA said they’d deliver the furniture purchased last Friday, today between 1pm and 5pm, and they did! One lone delivery setup person (all 5’7” of him) arrived around 3pm. I buzzed him in and he dragged five packages up to the fourth floor, asked to wash his hands, and then diligently went to work. He was obviously a pro, and after setting my new mattress (yeah, no more sleeping on a mattress-like-a-box spring) assembled all my items and was done by 4:30pm. He was even kind enough to hang the painting I’d obtained in Taichung AND as an extra added bonus he cleaned up, including removing all the boxes and wrapping materials – which is surprising because there is a definite advantage to NOT having to take out the trash here!

First month

I survived!! No wonder I’m exhausted: I visited my entire family, flew for 17 hours across the Pacific, and landed smack-dab in the middle of a cultural conundrum!  In the past month I’ve started a new job assignment, travelled around parts of Taiwan, searched for (and found!) a place to live, purchased furnishings! When I say everything about Taiwan is different than anything I’m used to, I mean EVERYTHING. It’s not just a new country, it’s a country where I cannot read the signs or understand the words. For a directionally-challenged person who must now rely on public transportation, this is definitely an issue. I got an MRT map and have started figuring things out, but it’s slow going. A country where, thankfully, the people are very friendly; most do attempt to help when asked. I managed to get on the right bus down the street from work, bound for Nanjing E. Road, but almost got off on the wrong stop (hey, it said Civic center which is on Nanjing E. Road). The kind bus driver indicated I had two more stops to go when I started to get off the bus. It’s a country of ironies. For instance, there are clear signs saying “Pedestrians have the right of way.” but it really should read “Pedestrians must get out of the way (of any on-coming traffic, even in a cross walk, if they expect to live another day)!” The humidity here is INCREDIBLE, but on the upside, I’ve probably lost another size just from sweating, and I can save 5 minutes each morning by NOT drying my hair. (What’s the point? By the time I walk the 20 minutes to work, it’s wet again!) I will spend this weekend RESTING, maybe catch the latest Harry Potter movie, doing laundry (that’ll be an interesting experience which I’ll surely share with you), and checking out the night market (photo ops galore). Thanks for your encouraging words….the adventure continues!

Day 26 pm

One day closer to moving! On the way back to the hotel after work, I stopped at a Taipei Dollar store equivalent: items in bins, nothing too expensive, made in Taiwan. I picked up trash bins, the blue bin liners required for trash disposal, and a laundry hamper – oh joy! Next, back to IKEA for bedding and flatware (sleeping and eating are kind of a necessity)! lol

Ya gotta smile seeing this!

Getting there is fairly simple: walk to the Daan metro station, up/down/up the escalator, take the MRT two stops to Nanjing Road East, down/down another escalator, walk 15 minutes to Nanjing and Dunhua, down a flight of stairs and, voila! I’m there! Travelling back with the world’s largest carry out bag stuffed with a duvet set, goose down comforter (not sure I’ll really need that in this heat!), a bathmat, some kitchen towels, a glass pitcher and a flatware set (yeah, those aren’t heavy), some clothespins, and even a shoji lamp and CFLs, wasn’t quite as easy – but I did it! Exhaustion….

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