Chaotic Chiayi

After yesterday’s whirlwind tour of Taichung, I decided to continue moving south. Taichung train station looked different from when I arrived .

Going to Chiayi was a stopover before heading for Alishan National Park, a place with stunning mountains. It was a popular tourist destination.

In Chiayi, I was staying in a capsule hostel with a space theme. The capsules weren’t the normal ones where you go in headfirst. They were large bunk beds that you happen to enter from one side that looked like a capsule opening. It was modern, clean, and provided good facilities.

After booking a hostel as close to Alishan as I could get (which wasn’t that close, I later found out), I walked around Chiayi, without looking for anything in particular.

I found Chiayi somewhat chaotic, which is probably normal given that I was there barely a day. As I walked around, I often found myself walking on the side of the road; not all roads had pavements. The oddest sight was a games arcade next to a gun shop!

Having done a circle, I headed for a veggie restaurant that popped up on Google Maps. When I got to the restaurant, there was a couple running the place. I asked the man (via Google Translate) if they made vegan food and he replied that they did. At this point, the other person came to look at my phone and she said several times that they didn’t. I started walking away, puzzled why this was listed as a vegan restaurant on Google. Then I realised the cause of the confusion. She had seen only the second part of my message, the bit that said, “no meat, no fish, …” and she had answered “No” meaning “No we don’t have anything with those ingredients”, thinking I wanted food with those ingredients! With the confusion cleared up, they quickly served me a noodle dish. Other diners in the half outdoor/indoor restaurant nodded to me as I ate. I was the last to leave and the owners were happy to close since they had seemed a little weary earlier.

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