February 28, 2005

We've found some! But what? Only half a bucket costs for 300 NT dollars? That's a steep and we felt like being ripped off. The owner said the charge for the strawberries had inluded the admission to the garden. If I had known that, I would rather buy some directly from them. That should be much cheaper.

bucket 籃
a steep 貴的東西
rip off 詐騙, 剝削
admission 入場(指門票或費用)
Check check check! Where are the big ones?
OK. Here we are. Look at the sign saying "Big strawberry garden" We will go picking them now. Let's see how "big" they are.

What an evening!

7:10 p.m. Xi Zhi city.


"Is this Albert?"
"Yah? Who is this?"
"This is xxx with DM language school. Where are you now?"
"I am driving."
"Driving? You are supposed to be teaching now! You didn't know that?"
"What!! Teaching? What do you mean by that? Today is a national holiday, isn't it?"
"But we are still open today. I believe you must have been informed of that beforehand. Right?"

"You did have inf...? My God. Why the hell didn't I know about it?"
"Can you make it here now?"
"I can. But at least I won't be there until 8. Can students wait for me?"
"hmm... How about that Albert. I have to call Mr. xxx right now to check with him. He makes the call anyway."
"All right, please let me know what to do. Bye."

Ten minutes later. I was rushing off to the train station.

"Yes? What's up now?"
"I have talked to him on the phone. And he said it would be ok to cancel tonight's class "
"What about the students? How was their reaction?"
"There are about 4 in the classroom. They've all settled for our idea and will all be leaving."
"But I think I can still make it by 8 o'clock. So the class can continue then..."
"That's ok, Albert. We have announced our decision. You don't have to come over at this point"

"...All right, but I am really sorry about this mix-up."
"We feel sorry too. I'll talk to you later, Albert. Bye."

7:25 p.m. A train to Taipei just left the platform.
I set foot there, wiping the sweat off my forehead.
On my way home, I tried to figure it out why they insisted on opening the school that day.
And this accident just remind me of some thing I once taught in class, the "conditional sentence".

If I had known that the class would be open tonight, I wouldn't have missed the chance making the money.


be supposed to 應該
inform of 提醒
beforehand 事先
someone makes the call 某人決定怎麼做
rush off 趕去
wipe off 擦拭
conditional sentence 狀況句, 假設語氣

February 24, 2005

Another photo taken by me.
Pretty. Isn't it?
I set foot on top of the hill overlooking the whole town. Is that Gong Guan country I am shooting at? Or it may be Dahu which will be our next stop.
We stopped by the Fayun temple that is located on some hill. I was told that it was among the four high-profile temples in Taiwan.

Revision: 林為人老師英語讀書會招生簡章

Extension Reading Group


(資歷: 全民英檢高級合格證書、陽明大學英文講師、中華電信英文講師)
(6:30-7:00英文諮詢時間; 7:00 -9:00共讀時間) 共9回
2. email至信箱報名
3.傳真報名:27064556 聯絡人林小姐電話27552823-2117

February 23, 2005

We are hitting the road again. I took the picture for no reason. Just'd like to let you know what the road sign says. We are going the opposite way in back of me.
The locals of Wenshui old street are hanging some food to be dried/ dehydrated. They looked like pig's livers. Yuck....(No offense!)

dehydrate 脫水
No offense 無冒犯之意
Enjoying the "Hakkanese" food is a "must-do" while visiting Miao Li. My son, nephews, and I are in the picture.
We passed through the "Wenshui old street" on half way to Dahu country. What had annoyed us was that walking down the old street, we needed to watch out for the vehicles passing us by lest we should get hit by them. We tried the well-known food-- "Ban Tiao" which is made of rice noodles, and it tasted good.

Thanks Leo.

I handed my old man the local specialty of Hualian-- the rice wine from you, and he seemed enjoying it pretty much. So, I owe you one now, and let's find time to hit a restaurant for a meal. That'll be my turn.
Ordering some side dishes is best thing to do when I am starving. While I don't have the taste for pig's livers, if you order it please knock yourself out.

old man 老爸
local specialty 特產
owe someone one 欠某人一次
find time to V 找時間做...
be one's turn 輪到某人
side dishes 小菜
be starving 飢餓
have a taste for something 對...有品味
knock oneself out 自己享受

February 22, 2005

延伸英語讀書會 ExtenSion Reading Group



活動時間:94/3/10-5/19止,每週四晚上6:30-9:00 (每個月第一個週四活動停止)
(6:30-7:00英文諮詢時間; 7:00 -9:00共讀時間) 共9回
Tel: 2755 2823 # 2117 林小姐

下載報名表: To download the application form, please click here.

February 21, 2005

We were heading to Miao Li on the first day's morning of Chinese New Year. Before we reached our destination, we stopped by the Guan Xi rest area for a temporary let-go. It was a foggy day, so the traffic condition was not so good on Highway 2, but still a lot of tourist set out on that day. People crowded toward the rest area for a short relief.

let go 放鬆
set out 開始旅程

February 20, 2005

Red envelop and the thought

It goes without saying that giving the young generation the "Hong Bao", a red envelope where some lucky money are inserted, has become the most significant part in the kid's life for Chinese New Year vacation. To certain degree, it doesn't matter how much money we leave in the envelope for them, but it is the thought that counts.

It goes without saying that...不用提, 很顯然的
to certain degree/extent 某種程度而言
the thought that counts 重要的是心意

February 18, 2005

Some dark house

Every now and then, the cram school which I work for sends some new teachers to my class. They at all times step into the classroom in the middle of my instruction, so it's easy to know who they are and what their purpose are for. They probably just want to get some ideas of how they can teach in the near future by observing others.

In the first place, I thought they were just like some new comers in my class. Then I found their language fluency was too good to be a student. Here comes an real example; a lady, who I assume is a teacher to-be, came to my class the other day, finding her seat in a calm and unhurried manner. She spent only about 10 minutes accomplishing her writing as the class for that night was a writing practice for GEPT. I looked at her essay, pretending she was a "real" student. Leaving some comments on her work, I told her she did a great job and was supposed to be no problem getting a great score on GEPT writing test. She thanked me and then left the classroom in a snap as she had already finished her assignment in class. Kind of fun but no harm to me, though. There are always dark house in my class while many of them shouldn't be there.

every now and then = from time to time 不時的
at all times = all the time 總是
In the first place 一開始
new comer 新人, 新進者
a teacher to-be 即將為人師的人
calm and unhurried 從容不迫的
be supposed to 應該
in a snap 迅速的
dark house 深藏不露之人

February 17, 2005

The main gate of the apartment.
I lived in apt. # 165 which is a one-bed room apartment.
To rent this one, I needed to pay somewhere around $1,100 to $1,300 U.S. dollars to the owner of this apartment building on a monthly basis. What a steep (超貴) !

I used to live in this apartment for three years, 1998 through 2001. It's in Fremont city that is among one of the cities in the Silicon Valley. When I came back to revisit this place in 2004, I still felt familiarity with it. By the way, unlike Taipei, an "apartment" is only for rent in the US.

Drop someone a line

Ever since the innovation of internet, the communication between people has become lot easier. No matter where they are, people can find one another by just a click away. On the other hand, some traditional method of communication such as using letter paper has been getting phased out these days. Sending people a card may go the way of dinosaurs. There is no denying that they becoming things of the past is a matter of time.
How long haven't you dropped your close friend a line?

phase out 逐步消失
go the way of dinosaurs 變落伍
There is no denying that... 不可否認的是...
drop someone a line 寫信給某人

February 16, 2005

Stuck between a rock and a hard place

I finally faxed in the "class drop" form to the G.V. headquarter yesterday, which means that starting March 17, I will be no longer teaching any class at the Xindian branch but my classes at Wenshan branch will be remained the same . For me it is so hard a decision to make since my teaching career at Xindian branch dated back to two years ago. Some of the students' name can still be known by my heart, such as Hank, Cindy, Vanessa, Nancy, Judy, Hunter, Jean, Grace, Joanna, Amy, Sandy, Brian, Pearl, Doctor Hsu, Dragon, Ryan, Tina, Leo, Sunny, Gloria, Susan, Flora, Lydia, Linda....and dozens of them who I always considered good friends of mine. I hate to announce it's about time to say good-bye but I will never forget them.

Stuck between a rock and a hard place 進退兩難
know something/someone by heart 記住某人或某事

February 15, 2005

Now I am setting foot at the west coast of San Francisco peninsula. Where I am standing is near the well-known Cliff House but it seems to be under construction now. Tourist usually come down to go for dinner at one of the restaurants along the street. They can see the whole view of Pacific Ocean sitting from here. I am pointing my thumb at the small rock behind me. Do you know why the color of rock top is white? It's sea birds' waste and was not caused by snow. It never snows in the city actually.

Vegetarian versus Vegan

In the U.S., a vegetarian is quite different than a vegan. The former doesn't have to merely have vegetables for daily meals; however, eggs, seafood, and milk are fit to be eaten and drunk. On contrary, a vegan means a strict vegetarian who allows him/herself to eat vegetables only. Furthermore, if the people only feed on fruits, they must be a "fruitarians".

February 13, 2005

It is a good way for power conservation, isn't it?
To see is to believe!
It's sooooo huge.! When it spins, it sounds like the propeller of the plane..
A close-up of the windmill.

A visit to Shimen Wind Power Plant

If you lived in north California once or drove along highway 580, these guys couldn't look too familiar to you. That's right, the windmills for wind power are they.

You have to let us know.

Don't tell me that you got nothing new or interesting to tell us about your new year vacation. I do, but please allow me to take a little more time to organize my stories over the following days. I will put articles plus pictures on this BLOG to share my Chinese new year adventure with you. You gotta do the same thing as I will.

February 07, 2005

Shopping at midnight.

Have you ever done this? Considering there would be hundreds of thousands of people crowding toward the giant supermarkets like RT-Mart or Carrefour, I decided to avoid the shopping peak by going there in the very late night. However, I couldn't believe that there were still so many crazy shoppers like me having the same thoughts-- maybe there wasn't any break time for the moment. Most of the markets are open 24-7 for the vacation. I remembered it was 1:30 am in the morning when I checked out at RT-Mart. What is your story for New Year shopping?

February 06, 2005

This place is indeed worth paying a visit.

I was told that a lake on the top of the mountain is the source of the water fall. However, it will be too steep to make a further climb.
This is it.
Not yet! The water fall is still way up in the front.

It's such a nice and quiet place for a family outdoor.

The water resource of the place has been maintained and protected by the government. No Bar-Be-Cueing, fishing, and playing in the water are allowed for the sake of environmental protection.

Allow me to suggest you a fun place to go if you like to live a little by making a short trip somewhere. This place is located in Wan Li country, Taipei county. Just as true as the characters imprinted on the rock saying "The trail to the Qin Shan water fall", you will have to spend about one hour hiking on the trail up to the water fall, which is the destination of the hike. More pics will be posted later on.

Don't make a pig of yourself.

When it comes to the Chinese New Year vacation, people tend to ignore the fact that pigging out doesn't do any good to their health. Especially for those who live with the disease such as diabetes, hypertension/ high blood pressure, heart problem, gout and just to name a few, shouldn't indulge themselves too much in the new year's revels.

make a pig of oneself = pig out 大吃大喝
indulge oneself in 縱容, 大快朵頤

February 05, 2005

Poker game

I've never told you that I am the guy kindda knowing Web design inside and out since it used to be my field of expertise. Until now, I am still the subscriber to some newsletters on Internet regarding the Website design and development. Of late I found an interesting on-line game programmed by JavaScript, so I made a same page that embedded with the code I found. Click here to play.

know something inside and out 對某事了解透徹
field of expertise 專業領域


前臺小姐:“ Hello.”(你好!)
前臺小姐:“You have what thing?”(你有什麼事?)
老外:“Can you speak English?”(你會說英語嗎?)
前臺小姐:“If I not speak English, I am speaking what?”(如果我不會說英語,我在說什麼呢?)
老外:“Can anybody else speak English?”(有其他人會說英語嗎?)
前臺小姐:“ You yourself look. All people are playing, no people have time, you can wait, you wait, you not wait, you go!”(你自己看看,大家都在玩,沒人有時間,能等你就等;不等你就走!)
老外:“Good heavens. Anybody here can speakEnglish?”(天啊!這?有人會說英語嗎?)
前臺小姐:“Shout what shout, quiet a little, you on earth have what thing?”(喊什麼喊?安靜一會兒,你到底有什麼事?)
老外:“I want to speak to your head.”(我想和你的頭兒說話)
前臺小姐:“Head not zai. You tomorrow come!”(頭不在,你明天來吧!)
"Millbrae" station is located in Milbrae city near South San Francisco. Commuters can park their cars here and catch the BART to downtown for work.

Commuters 通勤族
Inside the BART train...
Does it look like MRT of Taipei? Its actual name is BART, short for Bay Area Rapid Transit. It has been serving the residents of San Francisco bay area for more than 20 years.

February 04, 2005

Downtown San Francisco. Where I am standing is the Market Street of the city.

A fishing harbor in Half Moon Bay, about 50 miles south west of San Francisco by HIghway 1. Tourists can purchase the freshest fish from any of the fishermen on their fishing boats.

February 03, 2005

I used to bowl a lot when living in San Francisco many years ago. This "Serra Bowl" is the bowling alley that I went visit the most. I went back there again last year, but found people who ever worked there were all replaced. I remembered one Filipino guy by the name of Roger treated me pretty well.
I am a bowling freak frankly, and I could even score more than 200 points. It's a piece of cake to me to get high score, hee...hee. Do you wanna kick my butt some time? Let's bowl if you have the guts!

February 02, 2005

I am setting foot on the Golden Gate bridge. It's pretty cold out there even if it's in the summer and a strong gale always blows on my face. San Francisco Bay is right in back of me in the picture.

set foot 站立
gale 強風

When is the Chinese new year day?

Foreigners are always confused about the Chinese lunar calendar. They often ask why the first day of the Chinese new year falls on different day. To answer the question is that easy. If referring to Easter that also falls on a different day of the year--sometimes in late March or early April, they will find out the similarity of both holidays. In other words, they all go by the lunar system which is associated with the full moon.

Has your style been cramped?

After getting the year-end bonus, lots of people made up their mind to have a different job. They are quitting their jobs because they don't want their workplace to cramp their style. Such phenomenon can be easily found among the young office workers. As far as the older employees are concerned, they prefer to stay put until something better comes along.

year-end bonus 年終獎金
make up ones mind to V 下定決心去...
cramp one's style 限制..的才華
stay put 按兵不動
come along 出現

Problem finally solved.

I spent few hours tonight fixing some script problems on this Blog, and now it seems getting back to normal. Thank God. It really scared the heck out of me when some troubles about coding the pages occurred. Based on the knowledge I have for Web programming, I eventually figured everything out. A little pooped now....Gotta go to bed.