Sunday, January 29, 2006

Continue with the trip.

Mike King Log 29th Jan. 06.

I'll just pick up from where I left you on the mountain trip which was at the mountain hotel at Wulu.

After we checked in Liam and I decided to groove on down to the hot spare. They have built this amazing rock pool divided into two. Hot and beautiful. It is called a therapy pool and man Mike King just floated and enjoyed the therapy. The hot section was about as hot as the hottest bath that you could possibly stand. Just lovely to submerge the whole body and feel the heat come in from every point.

I get chatting to a Taiwanese couple with a couple of young boys about 3 & 5. Really friendly guys. They seemed a little uncomfortable that Liam was naked and I was in my undies but probably forgiving as we were foreigners. Maureen came down a little later and joined in on the conversation. She also told me about the swim wear rule on the sign. Oh well, can't read mandarine.

Liam was being a little bit too daring and climbing up the high rocks over the pool. He stood up on the ledge looking over the pool with a big grim on his face. The little three year old yeled out "Now cur lien. Wakowli Ih Oooh!" I had no idea what he was saying but repeated it as it sounded very funny and very cheaky. Liam started saying the same words out loud making all of the pool attendies laught loudly. "Now cur lien. Wakowli Ih Oooh!"

We packed up and back to our room to relax. Maureen then translated for me. The little boy had said: "Oh! I don't believe it. How clever to do that." Maureen had heard the same saying on a recent advertisement that he must have picked it up from. Kids are so funny.

Ok, So I spent that night getting theblogup to date and will now continue with what I woke up to. I couldn't wait to see the gorge in front of our window and woke up to a fully fogged in window. I gave it a wipe with the towel and could finally get a look at the gorge and across to the other side. At first appearance it didn't look all that spectacular but as I started to get what I was looking at into proportion I could see that what looked like small bushes were in fact large trees. This was an immense valley. We rocked down for breakfast looking through at the same view and all I kept waying was "My God!" "Man!". This location is unbelievable. After breaky we took a walk out over the suspension bridge. Maureen tried to pike out but I wouldn't let her miss out. From the middle of the bridge we could see, what had been cut in for tens of thousands of years, beautiful flowing cascade though water from rock pool to rapid and so on down the valley. Occasionally on the side you would notice smaller pools that seemed to be a goldern yellow colour. Out Taiwanese friend that we met last night told us that these were hot pools on the side where hot spring water comes out. You could just spend the day down there hopping from pool to pool with a packed lunch. By the way, the Hotel at Wulu was called Tien Long I think.

Ok, so time to hit it and on with the trip. I was very enthusiastic of the possibility of finding some surfing breaks as I had further down the coast in 2000. I had read on the net that there are plenty of surfing breaks and not a surfer in sight.

We drove down though beautiful valleys, through tunnels and then eventually just seemed to pop out on the coast. WE hit a vista looking out through a river mouth spanned by a bridge and what looked like about 4 to 5 foot sets were rolling through. The wind was a little cross shore but you would be able to pisk off some nice ones. We turned right and headed North. On the map I could see a place called Sun Shien Tai. A nice little pinnacle sticking out from the coast which showed a great possibility of a point break and protection from the cross wind. As we drove closer I could see more and more that the conditions were set up for left handers off this point. We drove in level with the point and from the highway I could see left handers peeling off a point break. " Oh Yeh!" Maureen was amused at my excitement. To my pain we had to go to the touro location first to get some food. Pretty cool fresh seafood snacks. Determined I then steared Maureen down a little road which I felt was headed to this point break. We drove into a little road and through the coconut trees I could see lovely smooth conditions and smaller waves peeling though that looked like between sets. One fisherman was just leaving with what lookedlike an empty basket and I stepped onto one of the boulders approximately mid way along the point. Poised with my video camera ready to catch proof of more nice, untouched waves on the East coast of Taiwan. While waiting for the sets I scanned the point with my camera. It appeared about 300m long and really is the picture perfect point with boulders edges and laced with coconut trees. "Here they come" I said to myself and about 4 nice size sets rolled through. I waited for the third in the set to focuse my camera. Alright! Now I have evidence of another nice break here in Taiwan. A lonely one at that. This is jsut how I found the nice left hand tube on Green Island 5 years earlier.
Ok, evidence on the camera and Maureen and Liam ready to hit the road, off we go with one happy little adventurour. I have a feeeling that the rest of the trip is going to be lovely sight seeing for Mum and the Mums of the world. We'll see, I may be very surprised.

Cheers fornow, Mike King.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Just got back.

Mike King Log 29th Jan.

Chinese New Year Eve tonight, in fact I think that the new year just clicked over. Anyway, just got back from the maddest mountain trip I could ever have imagined. I though that this was a small Island. The mountain ranges here are epic. Massive tunnels bored into the mountains to get through. Quite a few aftermaths of land slides as well. I will catch up on this web log probably tomorrow as there is a lot to cover and I want to make sure I get the placed right.

Some exciting discoveries including a high quality left hand point break for any interested surfers. Yes there are waves in Taiwan.

Chow chow.

Thursday, January 26, 2006


Mike King - WebLog Taiwan 25/01/06

Another action day in the Mike King Taiwan quest.

Today we set off for the East Coast. Last night we already got the hire car set to go and we’re ready to fire away.

This is a pretty big trip so it’s pretty important that we get off to a good start. Of course Maureen had a few things to do like go to the bank, which doesn’t open till 9, but you know Taiwan probably don’t have banks anywhere else so better to be safe than sorry.

Ok 10am and away we go. 45 Minutes into the trip we drive past the umbrella shop and of course we have to go in to see the umbrellas. We only have a mountain range to climb and then the East Coast to conquer, but hey! Umbrellas are important. Then across the road we definitely have to go to the Butterfly Caffee. Very beautiful and very cool having butterflies fly all around. Got some cute shots of Maureen and Liam.

Ok, now we are on the way. We start to hit the mountains and hit some pretty spectacular scenery. Then Maureen informs me that we are going to the Christian retreat at the top of the valley and will be taking a 45 min backtrack to do so. Ok!

Once again this was also a very spectacular place. Shi An San – That is:Holy Mount Zian. This piece of ground is so beautiful that the president of Taiwan at one stage tried to bully the Christians out of this prime piece of land. They underwent a lot of suppression but held their ground and today they flourish and prosper. This place is the back seat of a cascading valley that spans all the way down to the flats of South West Taiwan. No wonder the president tried to take this place.

Ok, so we still have a mountain range to climb. After taking over the wheel for my first encounter of left hand drive Mike King gets the hang and picks up a bit of pace. I did find myself heading towards a couple of entrance gates forgetting that I had Maureen on the other side of the car. Maybe faster with a motorbike but you know, wives can come in handy at times. Now this range is amazing. I have driven the Snowies in Australia a few times and I tell you this climb is impressive. We drive up and up and up and up for hours. Driving past many past land slides now braced with single road access. Road works and reconstruction is a 365 activity on these roads. Some of the roads are now braced up with concrete braced in tunnels. Little Liam loved all the tunnels and finally fell asleep in a winding blissful slumber. WE reached what appeared to be the top of the range and I pulled over for a break. I felt like we were in the middle of a bonsai garden. Straight out of Chinese picture book. The feeling was exhilarating. I pulled out the video for a short scan and couldn’t but help the mouth slip. 2700 metres above sea level. Well that explains up and up all day long.

I forgot to mention that the last 20 of so kilometres of driving was through fairly thick fog. No rain though. We then drove through what appeared to be the final tunnel to cut the cap off the final peak. I think this tunnel was about 300 long and we popped out on the other side. It’s raining and has been for a while. “It’s just here” Maureen said. A hostil that she had stayed in when she was about 18. Luckily it was booked out. Nice place but looked a bit like suitable for the backpacker with smelly socks.
Ok, so we hit the road again and this time starting to get a bit dark and foggy. I was a little concerned left hand drive and about 30 metres visibility, but hey, let’s find a better place. I then let a local overtake and followed his ass down the mountain. I made double speed having someone who new the road to follow. The local then turned off to a little farm on the side but the fog and rain had cleared and the road was suddenly a lot better. We drove through the most amazing tunnels but were starting to wonder about a place to stay. We pulled over and decided to push on. Just around the next corner we hit Wulu. Man! A georgeous hotel carved into the shear face of the road side. Looking over a gorge and with natural hot springs flowing through it and into the hot pool. We checked in a managed to score the double sweet looking over the gorge and large suspension bridge spanning the valley.

Now I feel like I am on holidays. Family time. Bye bye.

Mike King trip to Tainan.

24th Jan, Maureen and her sisters took me to Tainan to experience a legendary all you can eat Sushi Restaurant. It is called San Her Ooh - Top House or something like that. This place completely lived up to it's reputation as you will soon hear.
As we drove into Tainan I really noticed a big change in the appearance of the country and the people. The streets are cleaner and everyone looks busy as they should be. I thought, probably the local government in Maureen's home town suck as well as this place seemed to be going ok.
Now we entered the Top House Restaurant on the 12th Floor of Down Town Tainan and man it is an experience. The layout of the restaurant is mind blowing with georgeous timber structure all through the roof top and kitchen buffet layout spread through to choose from. Fresh fish stacked in ice with Chef waiting ready to barbeque on the spot. Deserts like dream haven swirls. No shit though. All fresh and high quality.

After agreeing about ten times that we were all full and then going back ten times for just a bit more, then coffee and then a bit more I made the move to stand so the rest would follow. Maureen said "Mike, are you ready to go?" Yep. So we left this 12th floor food haven probably tanked with anough food to last a week. Ha ha.

We then trucked off to a clothing shop that Wun Ling knew well to get some clothes. To my surprise and having to put two and two together the girls had no intention at all for me to get any clothes at all. Strictly girls fashion. Well, Maurren chose some georgeous stuff and I totally approved ofallthe fashion parades. Two hours later the final selections had all been made and it was time to head off. I then witnessed a one haour process of bargaining, inspecting, folding, laughing, packaging like you wouldn't believe. I actually cognited that this is the havingness of women and who am I to take their pleasure away. I just chilled out with Liam playing on the footpath, "accidentally"breaking a pot plant and having fun. We all finally jumped into the car and headed back to Gang Shang Town. While driving Maureen gave me a nice head but and acknowledged my patience.

One thing that seemed a little strange was that the shop, arcade and streets were completely absent of customers. 75% of the shops were closed and it was a bit like Sunday afternoon in Australia when weekend trading hours didn't exist. Maureen confirmed what I was thinking in sharing what the shop owner had told her. 70% of businesses had closed down and what was a booming area has become completely stagnent over the last three years.

We headed back home and decided to pick up a rental car ready for an East Coast trip in the morning. I had been looking forward to the East coast for months now as after visiting it 5 years ago found some of the most beautiful coastline I had ever seem. After the last two days I was now edging to get out of this place and into some fresh mountain air and clean sea breeze on the East Coast. Wethen headed back to Ma's for a quick dinner, hard to believe, and then bed.

Tomorrow better be the start of a real holiday.

I am finding this trip interesting though as after applying LRH Admin Technology to my business for the past two years and having startly results it has given me an new viewpoint on looking at businesses and the condition of peoplein general. The condition of Taiwan has dropped and there is an underlying cause. This is not a mystery. There is definitely a lie or three that has to be dug out and a correct formula applied to the downward condition that this country is in.

Stay tuned for East Coast.

ML, Mike King.

(ML = Much Love.)

Shocked As Usual.

Mike King here and landed in Taiwan.

We were welcomed at Kaoshiung Airport wormly by Maureen's family. After saying hi to everyone we headed back to Maureen's sister's place for bed. We have our own room on the forth floor. Up we headed and grabbed agood nights sleep.

The next day we woke to rain and we decided to take a trip to Kaoshiung to take Maureen's dad for a checkup and a look around the city. AS I looked around while driving I really noticed that the condition of the country has seemed to drop. Also the tone of the people. I didn't say too much as I may have still been tired from the trip, but later that day Maureen mentioned the same thing. The "reason" that seemed to come up was that the current president is a covert prickand doesn't have the balls to run the country. It seemed like the spirit of the country had been knocked out. What was to me a few years ago on the last visit a high toned nation had turned into an agreement of apathy and hard time. I think that they are all waiting for the president's term to end and then get the country moving again. Maybe they should have thought of that before the country voted him in for a second time about 18 months ago. About a stupit as the US with Bush. Anyway, I was starting to think that this was gonna be the tone of my holiday, but I am sure that some big surprises were install.

Maureen and I have been thinking of setting up a business in Taiwan and possibly purchasing a property in Kaoshiung and operating out of the city. We spent a couple of hours in the central park and although very beautiful the prospect of living there seemed to bring up pictures of getting along in a suppressed area. I chased Liam around the grounds for a few more minutes, changed his smelly but and we jumped back into the car. We then headed home to Mum's place to take the old fella back.

When we arrived I was a bit more awake a more able to really check out the scene. Maureen's parants have a fairly large bloke on the main road with about three townhouses joined together and a little length of shop front that Maureen's mum sells food for the factory workers out of. Again it seemed that the spirit of the people had dropped down to apathy and I felt like I was visiting a slum area. Everything was dirty and on top of that the wholehouse was like a bomb had hit it with major renovations still in progress. The whole family seemed over worked and the rest of the neighers in the street all looked like shock treatment vistims or something. Really strange. Anyway, tomorrow we were headed off to Tainan for a bit of a shopping and food blits so see how the day fairs.

Chow chow, Mike King.

Mike King trip to Taiwan

Hi guys;

Mike King here and just as it has been a mad but very productive year. Now for the first time in aboout 5 years it is time for a real holiday.

If you are new to my life and would love to take a loog at what I have been up to, take a peek.

Well anyway, this is the start of my holiday to Taiwan log.

Why Taiwan? Well my wife and business partner Maureen is from Gang Shiung Town in South Taiwan. You will find Maureen on the Window Cleaning page of site above. She is bending down cleaning some class. I have some other great shots of her but I will have to get them up later.

Ok. We flew out of Sydney and went via Singapore to Taiwan. Great trip but really only a time to catch up on movies and rest up for the holiday. Our little guy Liam was awesome for the wholetrip and didn't dramo the whole way.

See my next post for continued.

Chow chow.