What a cute idea for a pair of flip flops! I saw this on the black sand beach at Wàiào 外澳 in Yilan last summer. I went out there with a friend to learn how to surf—which didn’t exactly end well. Still, it was a very interesting experience, one I wrote about here.
Old Caoling Tunnel 舊草嶺隧道 was built in the 1920s to connect northern Taiwan with the eastern coast by rail. A new tunnel was built in the 1980s and the old tunnel was closed until 2008 when it reopened as a tourist-friendly bikeway. The main point of entry is Fúlóng 福隆, a beach town in New Taipei City about an hour outside of Taipei 台北 by train. Riding through the old tunnel makes for a great day trip from Taipei 台北—as long as you don’t go on a weekend.
While living in Taiwan 台灣 I have made a habit of saying “yes” to most things that come my way. At times this has gotten me into trouble—but most of the time the outcome has been positive. When a friend asked me to try surfing I said “sure, why not?” One lazy afternoon in August we were off to the black sand beaches of eastern Taiwan.
Surfing at Wài’ào 外澳 in Yilan was a mix of both good and bad. First, the good: since it was way outside of my experience I was gripped by an hourlong series of epiphanies as my consciousness rapidly adapted to the task at hand. Every new attempt to ride the waves brought a flash of insight, of physical knowledge and abstract thought linked into motion. Everything is happening so quickly—but there is a rhythmic, hypnotic quality to it all.