The Loneliness of the Long Distance Scooter

Everyone gets up feeling rested thanks to the comfy comfy beds at 157. Other places we’ve stayed so far have had hard beds like taking the hotel room door off the hinges and sleeping on it. These were more like a Westin heavenly. We get ready and head out for breakfast tripping that stupid door alarm again on the way out. We hear someone down the hall trip theirs as well and everyone busts out laughing in the hallway.

We hit up a breakfast spot across the street and get some hamburgers. Tha Queebs explains “They’re not like hamburgers, they’re more like breakfast sandwiches. They’re just called hamburgers”. They were good. Basically ham, egg, and cheese in a soft bun. We also got some more danbing which is thaaaaaaaaaaaa bomb. The milk teas we get have riddles on them. Mine says “What’s the most annoying thing to have on your butt?” and the answer is “loans”. Wtf? I guess they are a pain in the ass.

157 rents scooters and we get 3 for the day. To Queenie’s delight, they fucking look like pandas. They’re electric powered and only 10 bucks a day. We helmet up and hit the Kenting streets on our way to the southernmost tip of Taiwan and some lighthouse. These things make no noise at all. Good scooters for drivebys.

Queenie looks at a map!

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Jamie gets his helmet on the right way today!

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These babies have no balls. Mine’s capping off at 40 klicks. We’re scootin’ along the road by the water and I just can’t keep up. Jamie and Queenie are going way faster. I honk my dinky little horn but they don’t even hear it. There’s nothing I can do but hope they look back and notice. They don’t.

I see them round the bend in the distance and leave view completely. I’m left putt-putting my way up a hill on my sad little panda bike. Other scooters bee-beep and scoot passed me. I’m helpless. All alone on the road from Kenting all I have are my thoughts. What has my life become? Who am I really? Bee-beep!

I round the bend into a long straight path of road up to another bend far in the distance. Jamie and Queenie aren’t even visible. How could they not notice I’m not even with them? Maybe they don’t care about me? Did they ever care? Scooter dejection sets in and then it happens… a turn, two turns. There are three ways to go and I don’t know which one to take. And no, they’re not there waiting. Which one did they take? My heart is a swamp.

I pick a path. I don’t even care anymore. Fuck those guys. Down the road a little further I see a sign for the lighthouse. I remember when we were all gonna go to the lighthouse. Together. Friends til the end. Those were the days. I blast past the security post at max pathetic panda power and a lady yells something at me. I don’t care. Fuck your security post. Ok, I kind of do care. Taiwanese people are so insanely nice. I should be nice. I turn around and go back. “10 dolla”. “I’m waiting for friends”. Just a blank stare from behind the blue pollution mask. Yeah I don’t know what friends are either.

I go back passed the gate and sit-stand by the road on my panda bike. A minute later Jamie and Queenie come screaming around the corner on their power pandas, laughing and hootin, Jamie has his legs sticking straight out past the handle bars. Real funny assholes. “Oh hey, man! Where have you been?”, “I can’t keep up. My panda sucks”, “Ohhhh Beeeeeester!”, “Yeah, it sucks. It’s been like… 6 minutes.”

Ok it wasn’t nearly as dramatic as all that obviously, but whatever, I was alone for 6 whole minutes. Scooters can be lonely too.

We head in to the park that leads to the Eluanbi lighthouse. There is a nature trail through the woods. A sign at the very beginning tells us to look out for poisonous snakes and insects. Good times. There are a number of cool rock formations, look outs onto the water, and trees and foliage to take in along the trails. We go to Kissing Rock (two large rock formations that angle in towards each other and are just barely touching ohhhhhhhhhhh), walk through a cool cave called mystery cave (a good place to have a mystery band practice), and squeeze our way through the Narrow Gorge. Time for a montage!!

 

The end of the path emerges onto an open field with a walled lighthouse on the hill. The selfie masters are out in full force here. The lighthouse is called “The light of East Asia”, being the brightest of all lighthouses in Taiwan. It’s the only fortified lighthouse in Asia (maybe?). It used to have a mote and cannons. It was build in 1883 during the Qing dynasty, was taken over by the Japanese for a while, heavily bombed during WWII, then rebuilt, and is now the best places to take selfies in Southern Taiwan.

We get some glamour shots and head back to our lonely scooters.

Queenie looks at a another map!!

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Next up is the Southernmost tip of Taiwan. We bust it away from the lighthouse down the road. Miraculously, my stupid fucking panda somehow charged up and is now the fastest in the pack. Bee-beep!

We get to the southpoint and there is a gate. you have to pay. Apparently when Queenie was last here all these things were free. But youknow, that’s how it goes. We decide to just blow past a do not enter sign and take our scooters right to the start of the trail. I guess they leave that little road open for taxis to drop ppl off. Good enough for us.

Walking along the trail we spot the carcass of a gigantic spider, squished by some noble boot heel. “Gives me the heebie geebies.”, “Yeah. Gives me the Abba BeeGees.”

At the bottom of the trail is a small monument and a sign that totally breaks the forth wall and some grammatical boundaries making a hilarious mis-translation into the metafictional. Is the sign talking about itself? It says “The southernmost point of Taiwan <coordinates> is located on the southeast of Eluanbi park with a sign and explanatory text

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Back to the power pandas and we head up what is now the western coast. We pass by Spaceball headquarters and then find a beautiful vista at a place called Longman park.

Queenie looks at the maasasaaaaaaaap!!

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We turn around and head back to Kenting. We find some goats along the way. Pandas and goats together at last!

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Queenie looks at a map!!!!!

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We get to Kenting again and take a road up into the national forest area. Good little scoot through there, it takes you up above Kenting where you can look back at the town/ocean. We scared the crap out of some geese, spotted some red butt monkeys, and saw a bird on a cow, and spotted a sexy wooden deer vagina. Montaaaaaaage!

Back in Kenting we stop to grab a bite in what turns out to be a fantastic traditional Taiwanese style restaurant. There are a bunch of fish and shellfish on display outside of it. Looks like they’re raising lobsters in a plastic bottle. WTF? kind of a shit life to live. What are you doing today? Not moving and looking through a plastic bottle at the back of the tank? Shitty. We get an Ostrich stir fry, a pork dish, something called a bird’s nest, some pork fried rice, and a fern dish. The bonus of having Queenie around (aside from the general cuteness and hilarity) is that she can read everything on the menu, while we can’t read a single thing, so we end up ordering things we’d never usually get. Queenie is the master of over ordering though, and this meal is a prime example.

Good times in lovely Kenting, but it’s time to split. Later Pandas. KXB! It’s an hour 20 to the next town by bus, and then a 4 hour train ride to our next stop: Hualien and the spectacular looking Taroko Gorge!

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