Thursday, November 26, 2009

A trip to Hualien and Taroko Gorge (rated PG-13, contains some adult content)

As we walk under a stone canopy with white hard hats jiggling on our noggins and gravel crunching under our soles, Tina points below to the water that eddies in the gorge.
"The water is so blue. I'll bet they came here last night and poured Jell-O mix into the stream."
A man in his seventies stands at the edge of a jetty and films the scenery at Taroko Gorge. Green hills and marble-walled cliffs. Black caverns like empty eye-sockets. At the mountain base, the almost ivory stone looks like stretched ligaments, disappearing into the Liwu river.
We meet eyes and smile. We will never run out of things that will amaze us, huh?

We're human so we look and see faces. We see humans. We see living things.
Our tour guide shows us the elephant, the alligator - "Don't worry, it's sleeping," she quips, - the Aboriginal head. She even shows us Obama.
"I've known this bear for a long time," she says as the bus slows near a protrusion of stone.
"I don't even need to go to the Taipei zoo," I tell Tina. "Where's the bear?"
"Right there."
"I see a rock."
Our guide is eager to show us "Mother Nature" - a set of green mountains arranged so that you might imagine that you are looking at a woman, from a gynecologist's point. The woman's bent legs. And the mountain is even peeing a small stream. I wouldn't have seen that. And seriously, who thought of that?
"And this," the guide says proudly and shows us a photo of a rock formation, "is Father Nature."

"Okay," I concede. "I see a penis."

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