Wednesday, June 12, 2013

A morning walk

Xian and I seized the opportunity to take a morning walk over the weekend. Temporarily, the rains cleared and the sun had not yet turned the outside into a sticky oven. A few dogs took passing interest in Audrey and threatened from a distance yet gave us plenty of room.

Xian loved the small road we walked along. There is rarely any traffic so she entered full explorer mode as the path winds among a few small homes with chickens and roosters calling in the day. Banana plants dot the edges of the road and other fruit trees are also present.  The mirror in the photo is typical of Taiwanese backroads. I believe the idea is to help cars see around the blind curves but it is a rare sight to see a car or scooter check the mirror and react accordingly.

Fruit on the lychee trees are rapidly growing and I hope that we get a harvest within the next month (Did we mention how excited we are to be in the final countdown...) Quick lychee tip given to me by a coworker last year: Peel them and freeze them. They make tasty frozen treats.

The pink spot is XO's awesome hat.
We then came across a plant that I have not seen before. It's flower begs you to take note and look closer. When opened, it gives me the message of Don't Touch. What is it?

Closed flower on the vine
Opened up - what are the red seeds? Edible?
I know that each parent is caught by surprise as to how quickly their children grow but I shook my head in disbelief as Xian charged down this big hill with no problem. Only a year ago she was a tiny little thing that could not walk and just a few months ago would never have had the balance to race down.

A grate at the bottom of the hill provided a challenge. Xian peered through the holes and wondered if she should step onto the metal. Eventually, she mustered the courage and crossed back and forth and back and forth.

The rains have been absolutely relentless. With over 3 meters just in May, I'm surprised that our home is still standing. Water did begin entering through the floor at one point though the roof and surprise leak places seem to be holding strong. Over 10 years ago, a massive earthquake shook this part of Taiwan. The homes in our area cracked in visible and hidden locations so water occasionally finds it way into the house during big rain events. The river near us sprang up to fill its banks and scoured the plants that had rooted since typhoon season in the fall.

A fisherman caught our attention as he tried to find fish in the waters.

Xian loved the bridge over the river that seems to be designed perfectly for a toddler to peer between the cracks. She alternated between the two sides of the bridge to take in the flow.

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