Exploring Nadi Fiji – Going to a Local Village

So we had spent about a week in Suva and had a blessed time together and with family.  We decided to go to Nadi where the international capital was and spend the remaining couple days before I have to fly back to work in North Carolina.  We passed lots of interesting sites along the way, such as this container business. It appeared from the sign that people were using converted units for office space.

 

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Lots of greenery along the way.

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Houses were not far off the main road and you could see people cooking and hanging up cloths,  Living daily life.

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Once we arrived and had checked in to the hotel we both felt the hunger pangs and decided to go get some food.  Here we are eagerly waiting for out lamb curry.  yum!

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We stayed at the Tokatoka Hotel Fiji  Which was a really nice place, not far from the airport.  Pool, Waterside, Restaurant, Spa, all in house.  Or you can also get a taxi and go to town where there are plenty of shops and restaurants.

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We were asking the hotel taxi driver about local villages and he said hey you can go on a village tour its only $5 fijian.  So we decided to do that the next day.  We drove around the valley and got a really nice tour by car.  Then we headed to the village.

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Here we are in one part of the village.  Surrounding houses in the outer area of village was home to about 1000 locals.

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The village church.

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Memorial stone with different names of I believe pastors that had served in that church.

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This is the village drum, the is what was used in olden days to summon send messages through the valley, the sound carries very far.

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Holding the wooden drum clubs.

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And our tour guide is getting worried that I might be getting ready to summon the village. No worries I didn’t beat the drum.

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We walked back around the church and went and bought some handicrafts that the local ladies of the village had made and then we left the village and went back to nap during the hot afternoon.

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So we had a blessed time and then the time came for me to get back to work again.  Us together before I went through security.  Till we meet again my God hold you in the palm of his hand.  Love you Dear.

 

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Los Angeles a little over 10 hours away.  Strong tailwind of 117 km an hour helped push the plane over the pacific.

 

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Exploring Suva Fiji – Beautiful Weather

Taking one of the many taxi rides to get around Suva.  They had multiple roads under construction at the same time so was tough to get around some places.

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Here a couple fishermen either heading to fish or selling there catch along the harbor. Boats would go up and down the wharf and people who wanted fish would flag them down to buy  fish.

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Some nice trees along the wharf.

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One of the many bus stops throughout the city.

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View of some of the different boats in the harbor.

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Glassy water.

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A cruse ship briefly stopped in and the passengers were able to get out and shop.

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Park in Suva by the McDonald’s.

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View accross one section of Suva.  You can see the Ocean below if your at the right vantage point.

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Getting some fried rice at the MCHH Mall food court.

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Here we were at the new Taiwanese Restaurant that just opened in Suva.

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Family Crossing the street, holding hands and making a group trek across the road.

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Demodar City Shopping Center, always busy and full of cars and a popular destination.  MHCC and Demodar City two very popular shopping centers in Suva.

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Hanging out at Gloria Jeans Coffee at MHCC.  Good to be together.

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3 Months of Apart -Time For a Reunion!

I had been in the USA about 3 months, it was January, work had temporarily slowed down and My wife was in Fiji with her extended family. So thankfully the opportunity arose to go see her.

CLT to San Francisco.

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Flight to Nadi On Time! Oh Yeah!

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Selfie before taking off. Buddy behind me was participating in selfie too and I didn’t even know guess he was happy to be going to Fiji too.

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Arrival in Fiji. Captain set the plane down so softly could hardly tell we even landed.

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And with my dear wife again. Hanging out at MHCC mall in Suva Fiji.

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Waiting on Papers – Takes Patience!

Back in the USA felt good,  Being able to get back to work and earn some cash was really nice.  However its tough when your best friend is halfway across the world. Can’t wait till papers are finalized for her to come to the States.

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Back to video calls for a while!  not as good as in being together but its nice to see your dearests face vs the old fashioned phone call.

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Enduring the distance, cant wait to be together again.

Time to Say Goodbye – For a While

 

It was a precious time from June to October that I was able to spend with my gal spanning 3 countries, from Taiwan, to Fiji, then Tuvalu.  But work was calling and and much as I hated to be apart from my wife I needed to get back to prepare things.

 

Sunset in Funafuti, Tuvalu

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Me, Nancy, Mom, Dad and various cousins and grandkids. We took a ride up and down the island.

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Last minute Selfie.

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Many different family members each gave me a shell necklace to remember them by.

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Till we meet again!

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Flying out of Funafuti, you can see the thin atoll home to about 4500 people.

 

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When you suddenly realize that your experiences have changed you.  New cultures, people friendships, and memories.

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Flying into Suva en route to USA.

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Getting a burger in Nadi International  Airport while waiting for flight to Los Angles.

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And we are off to LAX.

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Going To Church – Sharing a Devotional

So we Had been to the largest local church several times and before we departed they asked me to share a devotional on there Fathers day which I accepted at the encouraging of my dad in law.  Not a father yet but I figured I could share some wisdom from the Bible.  My biggest question was “do I need a interpreter?” they said no, enough people understand English.  Well ok then lets get started! Got dressed up in a traditional sulu and fathers day candy necklace.

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Decided to share a devotional on the the Father of Faith,  Abraham.   Touched briefly on three topics, His Calling, His Obedience, and his Legacy of Faith.  About 15 minute devotional.  Final quote,  “I can think of nothing greater that could be said of the Fathers in this room by future generations than what was said of Abraham,  that he, “believed God and it was counted to him as righteousness”  Rom 4:3

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After several speakers shared we stood up front and different people from the congregation walked up and gave us many more candy necklaces for fathers day.

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Beautiful acoustics with high ceiling.

 

 

 

To Funafuti Tuvalu! – North and Hotter

After enjoying our wedding and time in Suva Fiji with many friends and family, we headed north, to experience the small country of Tuvalu.  I was excited o meet many more family members from my wife’s family.  A small Turbo Prop plane made a 3x a week flight from Suva Fiji to Funafuti Tuvalu.  This small country, a series of 9 islands spread across the remote pacific formerly called Ellice Islands, a protectorate of the British empire before gaining independence.  This beautiful and remote country was where my wife grew up before going to boarding school in Fiji as a teenager for 4 years and then University in Taiwan for 4 years after that.  Despite being away for much of the last 8 years this was her home and birthplace, Timeless Tuvalu.

 

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After a two and a half hour flight cruising over blue water at about 18,000 ft the capital and main atoll island was in sight, Funafuti.  The pilots must have been having a lot of fun because we descended quite rapidly, to where your stomach felt like it was floating inside your chest  as the plane dropped from the sky and headed towards the airport strip.  I had never been on a commercial flight that dropped so quickly through the sky! Even though we flew 2.5 hours north it was actually hotter in Funafuti Tuvalu because it was closer to the equator.

Here is a Youtube video that shows the decent into Funafuti.

 

 

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Just landed and unloaded / reloading for takeoff

Landing in Tuvalu Airport

 

 

Taking off in Tuvalu airport.

 

After landing in Funafuti, a kind relative of my wife paid for us to stay 3 days in the Viaku Langi Hotel in Funafuti.  We enjoyed that and took our time to go around the capital and ride our loaned motorbike up and down the atoll and visit her friends and relatives.

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Sunset in Funafuti Atoll

After a couple days in the capital we headed to another one of the small islands that make up Tuvalu, Niutao.

 

Wedding In Suva Fiji – A New Beginning

Finally the big day came,  several months of preparation and we were ready.  In Fiji only Court weddings are recognized, so everyone who wants to get married has to go to the Justice of the Peace.  Also if your from a different country you have to bring a notarized apostilled Single Status Certificate or Certificate of No Impediment from your country. As long as you have that document its really fairly straightforward to getting married in Fiji and many couples, especially from New Zealand choose Fiji as a wedding destination.

You go to the court and they enter all your information into their system and then schedule you to come back the next day to bring at least two witnesses, stand in front of the very nice officer,  say vows,  sign papers and then you get a lovely marriage certificate!

 

Going to the court was the very first thing we did that day, about 10:00 AM.  Nancy wore a dress with a traditional decorative necklace and I wore a Bula shirt with a traditional Sulu garment.  After that stage was finished we went and got some bubble tea in the MHCC mall in Suva.

 

 

After we got bubble tea and some food it was nap time until later in the day when the other events started. We had rented a restaurant and hall for the evening and decided to do a short ceremony of blessing / devotional from a pastor and repeat our vows and exchange rings again before the audience before launching into the food and festivities for the 100 or so people who had blessed us with their presence.

So after the vows, rings, and blessing by the pastor,  the food was brought out and the feast began.  They has prepared a stage and we sat traditional island style cross leg while the various dishes were brought out before us. Very tasty food and some new dishes I had never had before.  We wore one set of wedding cloths and then when it was time to dance we put on the traditional Tuvaluan costumes.  Now I’m not versed in traditional pacific dancing but my wife is, she is very talented and knows multiple styles,  She she was the dancing star and I just tried to make some decent artistic moves and look enthusiastic. Its ok, as long as you look happy and dance they realize you appreciate their culture and forgive you for any dance blunders.  After dancing there was a time of giving gifts and many of the dear people gave us gifts and cards.

 

It was a blessed day and went well,  and were were blessed by others serving us and hopefully were a blessing to others as well as we committed to starting a life officially together!

 

Suva Showcase – Here We Come!

“We have to go to the showcase!” at least that’s what Nancy’s small friends thought. People were flocking in from the surrounding area to go for the rides, food and goods for sale, and it was just matter of fact that we were going as well. It was after all a nice break from the daily routine and something to look forward to. We headed to the showcase later that day, (the equivalent of a small county fair,) paid the entry tickets and were admitted inside.

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Next thing you know we were surrounded by throngs of people, booths of food, and different rides that had been set up across the grounds. With many rides to choose from we decided we would do two rides and then go explore the food court. The most prominent ride was the small Ferris wheel that was set up. We got in line and and had time to watch a couple of groups of riders enjoy the wheel ride before we did.

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After a few minutes it was our turn to board, we got on our seat and were rotating slowly up while they disembarked the previous riders. Once they had it fully loaded with new people there was about 5 minutes of the wheel going full speed. It didn’t look very fast from the ground, but once you were up on it it felt higher and faster than you originally thought!!

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After the Ferris wheel we walked around the grounds and went to the food vendor area section and looked and things got some ice cream and BBQ plates. The food court where chairs and tables were set up were 100% full so we went and found some stairs to sit on the nearby Vodafone arena and sat down to enjoy our food. All in all we had a good time and enjoyed being at the event, especially because the younger ones were obviously enjoying it, very carefree, all they had to do was ask for money from Nancy and they would get it for rides and food all night!! imagine that! It is simply fun being around a lot of people in a energized event, and with food and rides it made it even more fun for all of us. Mission Accomplished!

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Enjoying Pacific Harbor – Fiji Islands

Just about a hour and ride from either Nadi or Suva is a great destination called Pacific Harbor, We went there with some family and friends and thoroughly enjoyed it. We accessed the beach from the Uprising Beach Resort and because we drove up and just wanted to be there for a few hours in the afternoon they kindly let us in no charge which was nice. There was a stunning view of a island further out visible from the beach.

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We relaxed and enjoyed the balmy weather.

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Can’t be at a beach without a quick round of volleyball!

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And nothing like sitting in the soft sand and enjoying the warm waves splash over you.

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Wow the wave is a little bigger than anticipated!

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after a few hours of swimming and volleyball we were all ready to head back and get something to eat.

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Love you babe!

Landing in Nadi Fiji – Taxi to the Countryside

Our small traveling band landed in Nadi Fiji where the international airport in Fiji is located.  Instead of immediately flying or busing  up to Suva Fiji we stayed with some friendly cousins on the outskirts of Nadi, about 15 minutes out from the city center in the countryside.

We grabbed a taxi and the really nice taxi driver Harish took us to our destination.  He also gave us his phone number and said that we could call him at any time if we were needing his service.  Which I thought was pretty nice because most taxi drivers did not give that friendly service offer, and because we actually found out that we did need his service again the next day.

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Harish, having learned the previous day through a conversation with me that I liked curry chicken, actually had his wife make me a big curry chicken tin with flatbread (unbelievable) which he brought the next day for breakfast for me when he picked us up to go to town.  So I actually enjoyed a tin of curry chicken while we rode to town. Cant beat a taxi driver that brings you breakfast, It pays to make friends quickly!

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Out we drove through the beautiful countryside outside Nadi Fiji.

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Until we arrived at the little cottage where we were to stay.

 

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With a pleasant view of the mountains as in the background over the rolling farms and homesteads in the valley.

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A chicken enclosure in the back yard.

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my fiance catching up with old friends and me getting to know them for the first time.  Going to the local swimming pool in the nearby river.

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Reconnecting cousins that haven’t seen each other in a while.  Enjoyable couple of days before we headed north.

 

 

Goodbye Taipei – Onwards to Suva Fiji!

 

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scenic view from elevated metro station

 

Interesting moment of a father sons trio waiting beside us for the oncoming metro.

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Here enjoying a bubble tea drink in the metro station before leaving Taiwan.

 

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….and even getting a bit of nap in the park!

 

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Then the time came for us to head to the airport with our traveling companion, Nancy’s sweet cousin Agape.

 

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Oh wait, Companions! looks like Teddy has a impromptu passport. 🙂

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And off we go.

2017-06-28-13-20-24-109After the flight was in the air for a bit Nancy asked the passenger pictured here in teddy could sit beside him to which he promptly said yes!  it was so fun traveling with a over sized teddy bear,  Kids in the airport and the stewardesses on the plane all smiled brightly when they saw Nancy holding the teddy bear.

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In Hong Kong Airport Terminal 207

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Onwards to Suva Fiji!

 

Special Treat – Beauty Treatments!

With our wedding coming up in less than 3 weeks, what could be more fun than getting your hair done!  It was a slower Wednesday evening when we found ourselves in the  Shilin Night Market   a popular destination for many goods and services.  Nancy had been wanting to get a facial and her hair done in a special style.  We found the place to get the facial first and they went to work doing what they do best, making people feel and look their best.

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After this stage we headed to the place we remembered a hair shop being and went up the the second floor story where we could watch the people casually walking below us up and down this particular street of the market.  The salon expert sat down and helped Nancy select a nice style she liked and then went to work.

 

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I sipped tea while the stylist did one stage then another.

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They finally got to the place where they had the curlers on and it was quite the setup, but as you can see in the photograph my fiance was confident that it would look great in the end.

 

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As you can see in these 2 pictures below Nancy was VERY happy at how her hair turned out.

 

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And now that we look and feel better its time for a selfie!

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Then we headed to a bubble tea shop to get a cold drink!

Adventures in the City – Trading in Textbooks

Mid June 2017 Nancy’s four dedicated years of study had just come to an end with a happy graduation. I had just flown to Taipei from North Carolina after taking a leave from work. We were enjoying days off of work and school in the city before flying to Suva Fiji. During the visits to the noodle shops and shopping bazaars we fit in some last details that needed to be done. One task was finding a new home for the university textbooks Nancy had accumulated and no longer needed. Thankfully one of the professors at university had given her a contact of a special bookstore that took used textbooks and special it was!

We filled my suitcase with all the textbooks in buckets and along the side till it could hold no more and and then we hopped in a taxi and headed to the bookstore. Fifteen minutes later we arrived on the street were the bookstore was located. Out we went and lugged the very heavy travel bag up the sidewalk and into the entryway of the building, and lo and behold there was a small elevator which took us up several floors to the bookstore. Taking the elevator directly up and into a bookstore was very interesting and a something of a surprise you might say.

Upon arrival we didn’t see anyone abut then we heard a rustle of books and a man emerged from one of the isles laden with stacks of books. We unzipped the suitcase and stacked up the many books for the shopkeeper to scan and offer his best price.

The Shopkeeper was a bit of a talker you might say and proceeded to ask many questions and tell us many details of his life story while scanning books into his system. He would tell us how certain books were worth less because they were “last years edition” which was true and still funny like he was trying to haggle us down with the payout. We were at his mercy because the only other option we had right then was to either leave the textbooks at university for free, or try to get some cash from this avenue. he would say I give you $3 for this used small book” and Nancy the negotiator she was would out counter ” $7 dollars” it was very funny and he the shopkeeper would say “oh you very active, very good!” and then look at me and say ” you very intelligent man, she very good!” commending me that my gal was a trying to get the good price on the books. We had a lot of fun with the bookstore trip.

Later that day we used the modest sum from the book sale to go to the massage therapy shop Nancy got her nails done and she let me get a nice back massage which I very much enjoyed. Then we went to the noodle shop and get some big bowls of beef soup which were very tasty.

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Small Adventures become big adventures when done together. And then the adventure becomes a memory that can be enjoyed by thought for years to come.

Back to Blogging! – Its about Time!

Well its been awhile since we posted! As we drew closer to our wedding things got very busy and we didn’t have time to blog. After the wedding it was just a good time to turn off technology for a bit and focus on each other for a few months. Even though we temporarily set blogging aside, that didn’t stop us from documenting or remembering our experiences which I hope to relate in part to you now over the next few blog posts. After we catch up on past events ( over the last 4 months) we will become current again and begin blogging about current events! So, here we go again and hopefully from here on out we can post more regularly without big gaps or stop and starts. Thank you for your patience and for reading and being interested in our website / blog!

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Boundless Potential – Growing in Beauty and Grace 

It’s amazing that when you meet someone at any stage of life your only getting a tiny snapshot of who they are. Everything that has made them who they are up to that brief point in time when you cross there path.

When you meet a person, especially a young person, you may see a smiling child, or a awkward teenager or young adult struggling to find their sense of purpose. But beyond those immediate realities, don’t forget that your also looking at someone with boundless potential!

Nancy dancing a traditional dance in school (center)

Nancy came from humble beginnings, she  was born in the small Pacific nation of Tuvalu. She went to school in the early days barefeet, and with a small lunch tin and improtu home made water bottle.

Everything is cool! 

Here at secondary boarding school, she was away from home for nearly 4 years at boarding school without a single trip home to visit her parents, usually just a phone call with a blessing and a prayer once a month was the only communication home.

Cousin “Sister” company

That’s when it’s especially nice to have cousins sisters along for company.

Big winning smile

This is a older picture but shows a wonderful habit that has been cultivated over the years. Its especially nice being around Nancy because you don’t have to be in her presence for long before her face will light up with a big smile and laughter that spreads warmth and good feelings through the room.

Family rooting for each other!

Pictured above Dad, (Maeaga)  Mom, (Falelogo) Brother (Temotu) Sister (Gutu) and Galoto / Nancy.  Her name Galoto sounds like Naloto when pronounced, so that’s where Naloto morphed into Nancy as comfortable name to go by that everyone can pronounce correctly at first reading.

Cousins are golden company!

Here in the early days of University in Taipei Taiwan,  basically as soon as she finished high school (secondary school as they call it) she applied to several scholarships and got accepted by Taiwan into a International Healthcare and Nursing Management program.

Colors! Pacific Islander Style

Lots of hard work and many classes and assignments later, nearly 4 years later and what a relief to have graduation right around the corner, as in days away!!

Class of 2017!

Here is a striking picture below,

All grown up! Where did the years go?

I love the pic because it says so many things, the forward motion of life, growing in beauty, growing in maturity and grace. Accomplishing and achieving potential that have made her family and community proud. Her prayers, determination,  and tenacity to do her best has been remarkable.

 

How To Travel in Taipei – A Guide 

If your visiting the scenic city of Taipei Taiwan chances are you will want to get out and see the sights. Figuring out how to get to these wonderful destinations can be a challenge. Don’t get stressed out! Reading this will help you get a better handle of what to expect.
Here are some popular and fun methods and modes of transportation for tourists.
Metro.

One of the most fun and effective ways to get where you want to go! Here we are after a journey back from a long day out and about exploring. You can buy credit for specific trips or use a pre loaded metro card that you can purchase at the closest metro access terminal office. The metro trains arrive and depart in regular intervals.

Bus.

Someone you have to get on a bus to get the the metro, or you want to hop from one place to another and can’t use or don’t need the metro because the route or the distance. To go from Taipei to a nearby village Wulai requires a bus ride because unfortunately the metro doesn’t extend that far! Wulai is known for its hot springs and is quite popular so you may have to stand for the first 20 minutes of the trip before a seat opens up.

Taxi.

When it’s raining cats and dogs and you don’t even want to risk walking a couple blocks to get to the bus stop or station you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do! Flagging a taxi may be your best option in moments of crisis like a sudden downpour, or coming back late and not wanting to wait for a bus.  Depending how far you need to go it varies in cost but to go a short distance is not to bad and is a life saver in the moment.   If you don’t speak Chinese that’s ok as long as you have a picture of your address and or or hotel name to show the taxi driver,  they will nod excitedly once they understand where you want to go.  Not the cheapest mode of transportation but it works and works fast.

Scooter.

Renting a scooter and having the ability to zip around to various sites and markets is a really enjoyable.  (I wrote a whole article about E-Scooter rentals because it’s so fun.)  Below is us on a super empty road, hence the stop by the side and selfie! However, most roads will require your to be more nimble in your balancing, breaking, accelerating, merging, and not getting crushed by a larger vehicle.

Bicycle.

Rentals for bicycles are also available, you can rent on a hourly basis or daily.  Single and tandem bikes area available many places, bike and scooters allow you to explore a several kilometer radius comfortably and get back in good time when your done visiting popular tourist destinations and street food vendors.

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And lets not forget, Walking!

No matter what mode of transportation your using you will be doing plenty of walking in between. And if you would like you can simply walk through parts of the city.  As you walk along especially the food markets it’s very enjoyable to take your time and taste samples of the different foods and look for nice gifts and trinkets you might like to give to someone you know.

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In short, any mode of transportation you choose will work, and it may take several modes to get to where you want to go.  Make sure you enjoy the journey and don’t get frustrated and ruin the destination by stressing about the transportation!

You can always stop and ask for directions,  but be aware,  If pedestrians don’t know what your asking or where your intended destination is, they may just point down a random street and say, emphatically,  “That way!” which serves the purpose of politely allowing you to part ways friends with no embarrassment to them of not knowing where you want to go. But all that does is help you get more exercise after you walk 4 blocks and realize your not closer to where you want to go. If your lost, ask several times along the way so that you know your directions are accurate until you see the landmarks your expecting.

Fun Street Food – Taipei Taiwan

One thing your will come to enjoy in Taiwan is the easy access street food, when you get hungry just stop and get many different food items. Below we had just done a lot of walking and got a juicy piece of pineapple and sat down in front of the starbucks.

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Enjoying some fresh cut pineapple!

Ice Cream, Fried Squid, Chicken, Roast Corn, Fried Sweet Potato, Sausages, Mango, Pineapple, Papaya, Bubble Tea… These are just a few of the food items you can obtain by stopping at a street side stall or shops. Many times you can have street food in a little box or bag within seconds and be on your way. Its very fun to taste all the different things and even though each item does not cost a lot you can spend quite a bit if you don’t watch the wallet and resist temptation!

Here is a more unique street vendor in Wulai, not far out of Taipei, the lady behind is a indigenous Atayal citizen with a business selling roast hog, they cut off little portions at a time and put sauce on it with salad.

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First time to see a whole roast pig displayed.

Enjoying a small roast pig portion with some salad vegetables.

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Tasty buttery crunchy pork with sauce

After getting food we just continued walking along nibbling food as we walked with the flow of people. Here we paused in the middle of the the street to eat a couple very tasty bites in a brief moment before continuing on.

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You can also stop by a Family Mart or 7-Eleven convenience shop. They don’t have gas or petrol but are full fledged convenience stores otherwise. Most of them have stools and a small bench where you can sit and enjoy your snack for 10 to 15 minutes while watching to go by traffic.

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Hungry

We had just walked a bit, very hungry and focused on devouring the hot dog. Suddenly aware of the unflattering picture being taken!

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It’s very easy to find food and get a quick bite on the go from a street vendor. If you would rather find a place to sit inside a shop and enjoy a snack and drink in climate control while watching the busy street traffic that’s a great option as well.

These types of food stops can be a great tie over before a major meal, and with doing a lot of touring and walking, a quick break with drink or snack can be just what you need before continuing on your journey.

Taipei 101 – To the Top!

Going up in the Taipei 101 is a great experience, shopping on the lower levels is accessible to all but to get up to the top it costs 1000 NT or $30 USD which I thought was a bit much but lots of people were willing to shell it out.

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Base of the tower.

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On our way to the elevator, huge lines Que up

 

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View of another complex.

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Incredible street view. people are little dots.

Its fun visiting Taipei 101 but be aware of long lines if its a busy time of day and als othe cost to get to the top!

Scenic and Enjoyable – Taipei Taiwan

Taipei is a very clean city, I was struck right away with the clean and pleasant streets. Its is designed for pedestrians traffic, and a 30-45 minute metro ride gets you to most popular destinations within the city.

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Walking to the market, umbrella for a reason sun is very intense!

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Stunning morning view over the many apartments.

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Enjoying some shade!

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At the Metro!

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Great view on this particular section of metro!

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At Starbucks in the ac taking a break from the heat of the day.

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Unique view out the window, mesmerizing watching traffic.

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View from Bali looking towards Tamshui district  Taipei Taiwan.

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Enjoying the shade, exhausted from the heat of the day, we were literally lying under the trees trying to get some energy while drinking some juice.

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Heat in the day in Taiwan can be a challenge in the summer months, take lots of fluids and wear sunscreen or don a hat.  The best thing to do is nap during the day, then go out after 6pm, its cooler and thats when the night markets really get fun with lots of activity.