Monday, May 2, 2011


For ten days I woke up at four in the morning and brushed my teeth and put on fresh clothes and wrapped myself in a blanket and walked into a dimly lit room and sat on a pillow for 2 hours. Then I got up and ate breakfast at a small wooden bench in a small dining hall filled with Taiwanese men slurping up their porridge in silence. Then I would return into my sleeping quarters, which was a small room with three straw beds and three mosquito nets and a cement floor, and retrieve 2 pieces of clothing out of my pack (a faded and torn blue and grey a pack that has been with me to various locations on Earth). With these pieces of clothing in my hands I would leave the room. I would slide the door shut behind me and then I would walk beneath a sheet metal roof to a row of sinks and retrieve a plastic tub from beneath one of the sinks and put my 1 or 2 pieces of clothing in the plastic tub and then scoop out 1/6th of a plastic spoon full of high-concentrate, eco-friendly laundry detergent and pour it into the tub along with the clothing. Then I would pour the detergent over the 1 or 2 pieces of clothing and then turn on the sink and fill the plastic tub with water and set it down on the ground to let the clothing soak. Then I would take a shower. Then I would take laps in a small walking yard until 8 o’clock in the morning. In the walking yard there was a clothesline and several flowering trees. Beyond the walking yard there were small mountains. At 8 o’clock I would return to the dimly lit hall and sit for an hour and then get up and walk in the yard for 10 minutes and then sit for 2 more hours, either in the dimly lit hall or in my small room with the three straw beds and the three mosquito nets and the cement floor. At 11 o’clock in the morning I would eat lunch surrounded by Taiwanese men, who seem to belch and fart with far less inhibition than American men. Then I would return to my plastic tub and get a washboard and put the washboard under one of the faucets in the row of sinks and run the water over the washboard and slap and scrub my 1 or 2 pieces of clothing against the washboard. When I could observe zero traces of soap foaming out of the clothing, I would hang them up to dry on the clothesline in the walking yard and then walk in circles in the walking yard. At 2 o’clock I would return to the dimly lit hall or my room with the straw beds etc. and sit for one and a half hours. Then I would stand up and walk in circles the walking yard for 10 minutes. Then I would return to the dimly lit hall and sit for an hour. Then I would walk in circles for 10 minutes. Then I would sit in the dimly lit hall for an hour and a half. Then I would eat an apple. Then I would take my clothes off the line and fold them and return to my room with the mosquito nets and place the 1 or 2 pieces of clothing in my pack that has travelled with me to various places. At 6 o’clock I would return to the dimly lit hall and sit for an hour. At 7 o’clock I would return to the dining hall and sit in there with an American-looking female whom I mostly didn’t look at but sometimes looked at. While the Taiwanese men and women listened to a Mandarin voice recording in the dimly lit hall, the American-looking woman and I watched an Indian man on TV talk to us in English about misery. He talked at us about misery in English for about an hour and then she would leave the dining hall through one door and I would leave the dining hall through another and we would both return to the dimly lit hall through different doors and sit on opposite sides of the dimly lit hall for forty-five five minutes. At 9 o’clock I would leave the dimly lit hall and brush my teeth and then I would return to my room and lie down on top of my straw bed and beneath my mosquito net. The mosquito net was green. Between the straw bed and me there was a pale blue bed sheet. Between the mosquito net and me was my sleeping bag, which I used more as a blanket than as a bag, and which, like my pack, had been with me to various places prior to this room with cement floor. At this point I would close my eyes and try to sleep. I would either sleep or not sleep. I would either dream or not dream. I would continue to sleep or not sleep and dream or not dream until 4 o’clock in the morning, at which point the process repeated until 10 days had passed.

Also, during this whole time I was breathing and feeling things.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Peter got a new hat!

El Nido!

We just returned home this morning at 4 am from our trip to The Last Frontier--El Nido, Palawan in the Philippines. If there's one thing I learned on this trip, it's this: TRUST IN RICO. We tried to make a reservation on the phone at Rico's Hotel, and it went something like this: "We'd like to reserve--" "ok ok ok" "a room--" "ok ok ok" "five nights?" "ok ok ok" "my name is--" "ok ok ok" "so everything is ok?" "ok."

so, we didn't feel too confident in our reservation, especially compared to our reservations in japan (this email is to serve as the reconfirmation of the confirmation of your reservation). but, we showed up, and they had our room! and it was beachside (on the bottom is a picture of the view off our porch), and cheap, and clean, and it had no mosquitoes! so, trust in rico.

Monday, February 14, 2011

We went to Japan and saw snow monkeys!
We also did other stuff...more later.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I guess I am not a blogger. I am not a blogger because I wanted to write a novel. I spent three hours a day writing a novel and a hundred hours a day clawing at my eyes.

I wrote a novel. If I were to write a blurb for the novel, it would be this: "It's OK."

Sometime I will write it again. Until then I will write sentences that could be no shorter than they are. Possibly I will become a blogger. One who blogs. Possibly I will become obsessed with image and video. I doubt it, but it could happen. The possible images and sounds would all have to do with Taiwan. Then it would all make sense. "Peter and Kyla in Taiwan."

Is Taiwan a hiker's paradise? Some say yes while others are not so sure. And what's the deal with fish balls? How wild are the wild hot springs? These are the questions I'd like to explore, if I ever become a real one who blogs.

Some day. Some day. (picture/video of a sigh)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Wow, we have not done very well as bloggers lately! Sorry to all of you avid followers (or should I say Ali?).

Here's why we've failed you:

1. My mom came to visit for over a week! As you can tell, she likes to party. Wo ai wo mama!

2. Peter has begun a new career as a fashion designer.

3. We've been watching TV.

4.We currently have a huge pot of chili to deal with. Its outrageously good.

Monday, November 29, 2010