I have been eating well in the last day, I'll tell you that for nothing. Last night for dinner, I made it out to my favorite little hawker stall, and had the fried dough with a fried egg on top that I've talked about on previous Taipei blogs (alright, I actually had two of them). They are so tasty, and they cost only about 90 cents. I also snagged a little bit of Haagen-Dazs ice cream, which rounded out the meal nicely.
For lunch today, the students took me out to Madame Jill's, the Vietnamese restaurant next to the hotel, and I had crackled pork skin and rice noodles, which was different than I expected, but was really tasty. The students were surprised that I knew how to make a chopstick rest out of the paper wrapper the chopsticks come in, so apparently I am not totally clueless.
Allen, one of the students, took me out to C3, an area of Taipei that is all about electronics (cameras, computers, etc.). I found a few little accessory things, but nothing big that I had to have. On the way back to the hotel, we stopped at a little chain restaurant called Meet Fresh, where we had a traditionally prepared Chinese sweet, which was ice with black sugar and sweet potatos and some sort of rice-based gelatin. It was unlike anything I have had before, and was surprisingly good.
I decided to walk back to the hotel from C3 (thankfully, it was a single straight shot walk of about 25 minutes, so I didn't have to navigate at all). On the way back, I passed the Seventh Day Adventist Church, the Catholic Church, and the Taipei Mosque (Heather will recognize that walk -- it is the same path back as from Din Tai Fung). I stopped in at Mos Burger to have the Teriyaki beef on a rice patty, and I always find that good, too. So I feel as if I have been well fed for the past day -- but it has mostly been pretty healthy, so who could ask for more?
Tomorrow is the last day of class, and I have really come to enjoy this group of students. Some of them talk more than others, of course, but they are knowledgeable and engaged, and ask smart questions. They've been tremendously nice to me (taking me to C3, trying to find how to get places I wanted to go, calling contacts of theirs to help me find gifts I was looking for, etc.), and I am very grateful for their kindnesses.