Holding on

Fort San Domingo in Danhsui, Taiwan

Fort San Domingo in Danshui, Taiwan

Panda World Tour, CKS Memorial Hall, Taipei

I was not myself the past few weeks. I don't know if I should blame my hormones for making me feel blah, or just my lack of interest to do any thing. It could also be the absence of endorphins in my system- no yoga or any form of exercise the past days, as well as chocolates. But I'm back and a little bit inspired to do some writing.

Last Sunday, I was finally able to sit down and gather my thoughts during the recollection in church. It's been quite a while since I last spent some time thinking about some personal matters- facing my own fears and anxieties. What a refreshing experience to listen to a priest, and listen to myself too.

I believe the only thing keeping me together is my faith. My world would have crumbled if I don't have anything to hold on to. When loneliness strikes, I scour through happy memories and just move on. That's one of the many setbacks of living abroad. You're left with so much time to ponder on so many things. People tell me I'm doing okay, I'm on the right track. But deep down, something is wrong, and I do not know how to make it right. Sigh. There are things that are way beyond our control, I sometimes wish for an invisible cloak. I constantly tell myself these things happen to help us better ourselves, so I'm holding on.

Enough with all the 'inner struggles.' I knew I needed a breather, so when I was asked to work on a Saturday to accompany a Philippine ambassador and his wife for a visit to Danshui, I just had to say yes. We went to Fort San Domingo, and had our lunch at Din Tai Fung. Then I went with my friend Hana to see the Panda World Tour at the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall. Lovely sights, fresh air.

An important person who has helped me a lot while transitioning here in Taipei is currently recovering from knee surgery. Please help me pray for Auntie Florence. I've made it a point to visit her after work to bring some ray of sunshine. I see her wince in pain each time she tries to stand, sit and walk. I hope she will be okay soon.

New Layout

After several years of using Blogger's layout and background design from Shabby Blogs, I took a giant leap of faith and tried using a Blogskin. I went crazy staring at the html codes, scrolling up and down, left and right. I managed to tweak it a little, but thank God for my friend and college blockmate, the ever reliable Niko Batallones, my new layout now looks fine and dandy. Just a couple more edits on the "site" part as I don't really know how to insert my Google Friend Connect list because I'm no longer using Blogger's standard layout and theme. I also can't seem to find the labels, where you can easily read all the labels most frequently used and just click on one to see all entries in that category. Help please? But I'm really really happy with how it turned out :)

The photo above is for my Day 28 of #100HappyDays. It shows some cutesy trinkets I found at a random shop while on my way to Songshan Park here in Taipei. If you'd look closer, you'd see screws, zippers and buttons were used to design the robot. They can be worn as a necklace or used as a keychain. They're quite expensive at NT$350 (that's around Php 500) but aren't they cute??? 

Taipei Series: Nanya Rock Formation, Taiwan

On our way back to Taipei from Taichung (central Taiwan), we passed by Nanya Rock Formations. Nanya is roughly 30 to 40-minutes away from the capital Taipei and boasts of its fantastic scenery. I picked a spot, breathed in as much sea air as I could and just closed my eyes.  I enjoyed this place a lot and highly recommend visiting in the afternoon, just before the sun sets. If you need to refresh, reset, relax- choose a huge rock, sit down, hear the waves roll in and... let it go (ala Idina Menzel) :)

Taipei Series: Wonders of Wuling

We planned a last minute day-trip to Wuling Farm, Taichung for the long weekend holiday. We were lucky that the driver I met few years ago was available and charged us at a very reasonable price. It was a 3-hour drive from Taipei. Mr. Wen, our driver, wants to avoid the holiday traffic so he suggested leaving Taipei at around 4:30 in the morning. When we arrived in Taichung, I knew waking up at 3am was so worth it. Imagine clear blue skies, lush greens, and streets lined with cherry blossoms. That is heaven on earth. Wuling Farm is beautiful beyond words. I was just uttering words of thanks and gratitude to God upon setting foot in the cherry blossom wonderland- thankful for my life, for this beautiful world. The photos I took won't even do justice. Enjoy and I hope you'll get a chance to visit someday.