Ok I have been a very lazy blogger... mea culpa all over the place! :)
I have been very leisurely lately (still).
Last week I was especially lazy and did as minimal as possible (except for working out).
I blew off volunteering at the Center (bad Sue) and skipped my first yoga class! VERY BAD SUE. I have to say my biggest flaw is my laziness. I am a Lazy Leo. 'tis true.
But, I DID volunteer at Anju's school - 3 days last week...and tomorrow I WILL volunteer at the Center. I will be a responsible adult for a change!
I am VERY VERY VERY excited because my (new) dear, sweet, wonderful friend Hilary has given me all kinds of juicy job leads. I really want to teach pre-school kids (mostly for the hours, but I realize know that I just adore 2-5 year olds). GREAT NEWS is: I have an interview on Monday (that I actually arranged just by calling one of Hilary's friends). The director told me that she has an immediate opening - "would you be interested? It's only a few hours a week - teaching reading to elementary school kids." YES of course I am interested. Also, she said there will be pre-school teacher openings for the summer, and she is also looking for 3 teachers to start in the fall! Excellent!! I can ease my way in with the reading positiion (HOPEFULLY!). I feel really good about it. I LOVE doing music with kids and I have a music therapy kit and cd - I can print out visuals from a cd that I have. (Even though it's really for special needs kids - I can use it for low level English learners).
I have a few others, but I won't bore you with the details unless they pan out!
Anyway, I am loving that I am finally being a networking mama! It's FUN and as I said in my last post, I am meeting some REALLY sweet ladies. 'sall GOOD!
Ok the BAD news is, my darling daughter has injured herself again...she sprained her ankle really badly. It STINKS because she can't dance or play soccer for a month (we took her to an orthopedic doctor and these are his orders). I have been pushing her around in a freaking wheel chair. URGH. I feel badly but this is the second injury (same leg) within 2 months. I DO feel responsible because I suggested that she do some running long jumps on this dirt pathway in the middle of this track at a nearby park. DUH you are supposed to land in SAND! Hello Sue! So she fell (while I was jogging around the track) and could barely walk the next day. I am a stupido sometimes. Truly. :(
More good news: my face took a HUGE turn for the better. It looks nearly normal (except when I smile -still) It's weird because I didn't get any acupuncture for almost 2 weeks - and the dramatic improvement occurred after my first treatment after that hiatus. I have to talk to my doc about that.
I will post my "walk to the doc's" next. I still have to get a picture of my doctor. I am shy about asking him! He's always busy too. I am such a dorky blogger. :)
Take care everyone!
I meant to ADD that I am ESPECIALLY bummed about Anjoli's ankle because I am DYING to go hiking in this beautiful town called Wulai. There are waterfalls, hot springs and MONKEYS jumping around the trees there! It's not that far from us, we could even take the MRT and a bus (but we most likely will drive). We'll just have to wait a month or so to go.
Here is an excellent little article from the China Post on Wulai:
A return to bliss in Wulai
Thursday, December 13, 2007
by Greg McCann Special to The China Post
"I really want to see wild monkeys before I leave Taiwan," my friend Frank said as we ventured onto Wulai's Red River Gorge Trail. "They're called macaques, right? I've got to see them. It's a must."
That was back in October, just two days after he and three other first-time visitors arrived from the United States. Despite the rain back on that day, the water in the swimming hole still felt great for swimming. The precipitation had the unexpected bonus of make the tree-choked valley look even more atmospheric than it usually does. "Like something straight out of 'Apocalypse Now,'" fellow hiker Baxley remarked.
This past Sunday looked like it might be one of the best days of the year for a hike, and the five us made plans to return to Wulai﹝烏來﹞. We waited around for over an hour for Frank to show up at the MRT station and finally left without him.
There is no question that Sunday, Dec. 2 was one of the best days of 2007 for hiking. We hiked to our swimming hole, and I cannon-balled into the crystal blue first. I nearly went into shock from a temperature that must have been below freezing. Cold pools in Taipei saunas were mild compared to this mountain river. I actually had a hard time breathing and quickly scrambled out of the water.
After swimming around for a while, we basked in the sun on several large boulders that crown the pool. We must have spent close to an hour relaxing on the warm stones when the tree branches on the other side of the river began shaking. Baxley stood up and stared into the tree and, sure enough, about 50 meters up in the jungle mountainside, a troupe of Taiwan Rock Monkeys were making their way down to lower elevation.
We stood in awe for about 20 minutes as we watched them playing on the tree branches, dropping down from branch to branch and nearly plunge to their deaths on several occasions.
There are only two places in Taiwan that I know of where one can almost always see wild monkeys: Kaohsiung's Chai Mountain and Taitung's Chihpen Forest Park. I have to say that while I suspected for a long time that macaques roamed Wulai's mountains, I never really expected to see them here.
Once the monkeys disappeared, we decided to try hiking up one of the tributary streams for a bit, but, the water being so incredibly cold, we didn't make it far. Just as we were about to turn around, a flock of eight to 10 Formosan Blue Magpies made a dash from one side of the valley to the other.
Much prettier than their Chinese cousins, the sight of those regal Formosan magpies shooting straight across the valley like arrows was spellbinding. What with the frog, the monkeys and the birds (we also espied a couple of Steere's liocichla) I began to wonder if we hadn't somehow slipped into another dimension and went on a hike through Borneo.
We were then spotted by a couple having a barbecue in the underbrush. We would have never seen them on our own. They invited us to cross the stream and share some river shrimp and beers with them, but we didn't want to get wet again. One of them urged us to go on tracing the stream further into the mountains, claiming that near the source of the creek lived an "un-contacted aborigine tribe" that we would want to photograph. We passed up the questionable photo-op and decided to hike up a trail that meets a higher, clearer path and trekked along, with incredible views of the mountains all around. Several lone men passed us in this section, each carrying machetes and rucksacks of cut plants.
Finally, we hiked back out and had a wonderful dinner of golden needle mushroom soup, fresh vegetable fried rice and Taiwan beer at the Shan-Ye restaurant across from the Cheng-kung bus stop on the main road to Wulai.