2010.7.15

In order to apply the Visa for Iceland, I decided to send the application forms by myself.

Actually, I also want to take a short vacation. Thus, it's a good chance that I could go to the Trade Commission of Denmark in Taipei, and then travel freely for two days.

In my plan, I want to walk the Caoling Historic Trail from Gungliau to Dali. Beside, I will visit the small town "Houtung" to see the lovely cats.

It's great that I finally get the time for these things I want to do for a long time.

 

In the early morning, I take the Taiwan High Speed Rail from Tainan to Taipei.

The High Speed Rail only take 1 hour 35 minutes to arrived at Taipei.

Because the time I arrived is still early, I take the metro and arrive at the City Hall station just around 9 o'clock.

Since I still have some time to try my new wide-angle lens, I decide to walk towards the Taipei 101 before I go to  the trade commission.

The Tokina wide-angle lens has focus range from 11mm to 16mm, and a fixed maximum aperture for F2.8.

This lens is quite good, and the Taipei 101 will be a good subject to show the power of that lens.

For about 30 minutes, I walk slowly along the street towords Taipei 101, and take photos of it in different distances. Even I have reached the closest corner, my camera still could grape the whole view of that tall building. That's amazingly good!

You may watch the first photo that is taken near the ShinKong Mistukoshi department store.

Taipei 101 does not look very tall and huge.

 

Then, I take the second at the corner just one block away from Taipei 101.

My camera still could take the whole view easily.

 

Finally, I stand in the front of Taipei 101. Taking the whole view is still easily, but you could feel the tallness of Taipei 101 which just like a big bamboo reaching the clouds.

 

Saying goodbye to Taipei 101 (it does not open yet), I'm ready for going to the office of trade commission.

The Denmark office is also around the ShinKong department store, and the office is located at the 7th floor.

The time I arrived at the office (about 10 o'clock) is quite early, thus I'm the first one applying for the Visa.

I finished all the process very quickly for about 15 minutes.

I didn't make mistakes when I filled the form. Even the staff is impressed by my application.

Actually, this is my second time that I apply the Visa myself (The first is for New Zealand Visa), so I don't worry about filling the form correctly.

 The feeling that I apply the Visa successfully is quite exciting, and that's why I always apply by myself.

 

After sending the application, my free trip is also beginning.

I take the Metro back to the Taipei Train station quickly, and transfer the Express Train to Gungliao.

Though the train is classified as "Express", I would rather call it "Slow Local Train".

It's truth that this kind of train is the slowest train in Taiwan.

Because the passengers in the train are so many that I have to stand for 1 hour 20 minutes to my destination "Gungliao". It's pretty tiring.

 

Arrived at the Gungliao train station, I have a sense of reaching the countryside.

I don't see any convenient stores, just like the 7-Elevent or FamilyMart.

No convenient store. I could not find any convenient store here.

The weather is good, but also hot.

Thus, it will be a big problem to get the drinking water as I walk the Caoling Trail.

The distance to the start point of Caoling Trail is about 5km.

The only felling I have is "Hot".

 

Although the weather is hot, I have to say that I love the stillness of the countryside.

It's really quiet, and you could see the birds along the river.

It makes me very comfortable.

 

Towards Caoling, my first resting place is Yuan-Wang-Keng (遠望坑) water park.

The toilet and the drink machine is my saver for the hot weather and my great thirsty.

Unfortunately, I only have few coins for two battles of the drink.

It's obviously that I will not have coins to buy the drink during the rest part of the trail.

Of course, I don't think that I could find another machine easily.

 

About 2 o'clock in the evening, I reach the formal trail of Caoling (草嶺).

It means that I have to "Climb" across the mountain from here.

Oh my God, I'm good for walking but not for climbing, especially the slope is not very gentle all the way.

By the way, I'm still thirsty, and it makes feel much tired as I climb upwards by the stone stairs.

At this moment, I regret a little that I didn't loose some weight.

And my camera backpack is also a heavy belongings.

 During the middle part of the trail, I think I rest for 10 minutes for every 100m of the uphill path.

 

After hard climbing for 90 minutes, I finally reach the summit.

  Although I'm quite tired, the feeling is good.

The scenery here is nice that you could see the Guishan Island (Turtle Island) far away and the sea.

 

If the uphill path is the hell, I think the downhill path is absolutely the heaven.

I walk easily down to the area beside the sea which should be the only place I could go.

Without doubt, there is a temple and the train station is around there.

About 4:20, I arrived at the Dali train station and take the local train at 4:33 to JiaoXi.

The passenger is few, so I could sit and enjoy the cold air and the nice views outside of the train.

After the tiring climbing across Caoling, it's very comfortable to take a rest on the slow train.

 

Arrived at JiaoXi, the first thing I want to do is going to 7-Elevent.

Because JiaoXi is a famous tourist spot for its spring, the convenient stores could be found easily.

I buy two battles of Coka, and then go to the hotel I stay tonight.

As for the dinner, I find a Ramen restaurant.

I'm so lucky and also surprised that I could find my favorite food, the Japanese noodle, in Yilan.

This restaurant is called "樂山" which is located at the 5th section of JiaoXi Road, just in the opposite small lane of the TangWeiGo (湯圍溝) Park.

 The Curry Ramen is delicious, but I don't take any photo of the Ramen.

I'm so tired that I don't want to bring my heavy camera with me on the streets.

After dinner, I go for enjoying the spring for a while, and then sleep very early.

I still have a great trip tomorrow.

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