Finally got this trip down. Been thinking about organizing a small group to Mt. Ali (or Alishan in Chinese) near my home county. Taiwan’s Independence Day (10/10) came in the middle of the week, but is just good enough for me to get this experiment trip going. Alishan is a little different from how I remembered it to be. Perhaps I was too little and everything looked huge and wild for me then.
This time, I went to the scenic area which is like a miniature version of a national park. It wasn’t as crowded as I expected. And that made the hike a lot more pleasant. Smelling the scent of the cypress trees, I felt refreshed from the polluted city air. The lower temperature on a higher altitude in the woods projected the perfect atmosphere of Autumn. I was glad to find that there were quite a few international tourists, as this is one of the promoted tourist spots in Taiwan.
This road trip was mainly to remind myself what this area looks like to evaluate the creation of a tour idea in my mind. Too bad I wasn’t able to get to the squared bamboo trail at a nearby location. But this trip does help giving me an idea of what to do next. Nature has its way to make things clear again. This trip gave me some revelation of my life. Decided to turn my focus on the good things I have, instead of trying to be accepted by those that don’t matter. Appreciate!
Couldn’t decide whether to head to the pool or do Yoga at home, so I went on a bike ride. ;P Ever since I found the photo in one of my previous posts, Freedom, I’ve been dreaming about traveling along the woods. Memories of past road trips abroad kept flashing back. Coincidentally, the reservoir in my neighborhood shares a similar scenery and is a popular bike riding route in town. When I entered the “bushy” hiking area, the road almost resembled the place on that photo. A smile came to my face while I pedaled hard over the hills. Then a sudden revelation hit me. Right here at my doorstep is the kind of place of my dream, and I’ve never noticed its beauty. No, it’s not a different country, but it’s a similar terrain.
Must it be somewhere far away for you to get the satisfaction of traveling? Must travelers go somewhere far to gain insights about life? If we look closer, maybe what we’re looking for has always been right here at our doorstep.
For some reason, driving gives me a sense of freedom. It’s been about 2 years since I was behind the wheel. Yet, the moment I sat in the driver’s seat, it all came back to me. Due to a recent employment change, I have to commute to a nearby city. To many westerners, a 30-50 minute commute on the train or by car may be every day life. However, for this small city on this little island, 10 minutes on a scooter can feel like a lifetime.
Good that I used to commute at least one hour to and fro in LA traffic. Therefore, 30 minutes is like driving to a neighboring community. Luckily, traffic does not exist in the part of Taiwan I live and work in. And I hope it stays that way…(knocking on wood) The moment I got on the open highway, it just felt like the world is under my control. And being on the road is probably the only stress-free moment I have in this country I call home but don’t really feel at home. Images of open country roads constantly fly by my mind. I could almost breathe the fresh air, smell the scent of the woods and see that endless road ahead of me. That “anything can happen” anticipation is what I really miss and love about traveling. Today’s first commute finally awoke that energy buried deep down in me since my return a year ago. It shouldn’t be long before I put myself on the road again, as history has proven it unlikely that I surpress my calling. And maybe this time, I’ll let it all in.