New year’s eve, 2013: I take my bicycle out for a spin in the cool winter air. There is no rain for a change and I make the most of it, jaunting up from Wenshan District 文山區 to the edge of Xinyi District 信義區 and the beginning of the graveyard ride through the Taipei Necropolis. Later on I ride out to catch the fireworks at Taipei 101 before calling it an early night. The next day I rise bright and early to take the high-speed train to Kaohsiung 高雄 for a friend’s wedding banquet.
New year’s eve, 2014: I take my bicycle out for a spin through the Changhua 彰化 countryside with no particular destination in mind. I find myself in a cemetery, pictured above. Tonight I will go to Taichung 台中, maybe see some fireworks, and call it an early night. Tomorrow I will rise bright and early and take the high-speed train to Taipei 台北 to meet some friends of mine from Japan 日本.
The similarities in these two occasions are striking but not entirely subject to the whims of chance. I have chosen to be here in Taiwan 台灣, after all. Next year I think I’ll choose something else though. It would be nice to feel closer to people again. If not I had better find a cemetery wherever I am—this is the beginning of a tradition on the last of days.