A Sunday Walk in Taipei around Noon

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

On Sunday around lunch time, I took a taxi to the Huajiang Waterfowl Park near Huajiang Bridge along Danshui River. The ride cost NTD$185 ($5.75). The weather was overcast and breezy along the river. The park was mostly unmaintained wetland grasses in the broad river. A bike path and pedestrian trail hugged the bank, the city blocked by a flood wall and elevated highway. There were few birds out that day, mostly herons and ducks. All along the muddy banks were thousands of small, skittish crabs. A healthy number of people were biking.

I walked the path from Huanjiang Bridge up to Dadaocheng Wharf. From there, I cut into the city. The neighborhood was full of dark empty shops, herbalists, shrines, and markets. People looked at me, wondering why I was wandering around in what to them must of been an area of low tourist appeal. But to me the sights were wonderful.

Around 3PM, I found a subway stop and took the train home for a cheap NTD$20, ate some lunch, bought some pastries, and came back to the hotel to write some emails before meeting up with coworkers.

Some photos:
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Old man sits at stairs at a plant on a pedestrian overpass.
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Disrepair.
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Cluttered machine shop.
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Narrow covered sidewalk.
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The bridges to cross the highway to get to Huajiang Waterfowl Nature Park along Danshui River.
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Bird watching boardwalk.
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Rustling grasses and a distant bridge.
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A black and white view of the bridge.
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Lost keys.
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Power line on a raised pedestal.
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Even the signs are in tile in this town.
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Purple flowers.
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A heron stands on the muddy banks.
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Two bikers stop and look at the river.
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Dog in a basket.
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A fishing hole.
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Relaxing by the river.
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The pedestrian footpath along the water.
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Painted signage.
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Flood gauge.
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One of the thousands of small crabs on the bank decided to eat a leaf.
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Stairs over the flood wall.
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A utility trailer for garbage truck maintenance.
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A decorative planter left undignified in the river.
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Another heron.
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A wild pack of family dogs.
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Cattails.
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A man lines up a shot in croquette.
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Floating platform with steam-shovel in foreground, plane in background.
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Man rests on both bike and rail.
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The entrance to Dadaocheng Wharf. A massive green door can be closed during floods.
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Sharp metal playground.
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Herbs.
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Herbs.
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Old facade.
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More herbs.
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Empty market.
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Hand painted cow over butcher counter.
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Meats.
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Man in a bakery coated in flour.
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Fish with expressive, glassy eyes.
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I don’t want to know…
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Produce in the shadows.
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Tea kettle and scale.
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Security guard sleeping behind high counter.
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Lanterns along a narrow street.
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Flower-covered shrine.
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Wall sized ad obscured by tiled building.
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Lady in small kiosk watches TV.
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An arch with many layers of chipping paint.
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Two boxes and a poster on a red door.
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Box on a brick wall.
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Pedestrian walkway in three shades of green.
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Old building blocked by old fence.
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Shanty with cat door.
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Bike covered in bags.
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Incense.
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Green wall and loudspeaker.
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Underground book mall between subway stops.
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Oh thank goodness, cinnamon rolls enter my life again!

Dinner was expensive and Japanese, but for all the raw fish and pomp it was the warm pillowy cinnamon rolls that left the greatest gastronomical impression.

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