Tuesday, November 02, 2010


There was one other thing I didn't mention in my post on Taroko Gorge on Saturday, because I figured it wasn't that relevant to most tourists planning a trip to Hualien, and because there were a few people who I wanted to surprise: while I was in the gorge, I proposed to my girlfriend.

I think she already had her suspicions about the motivation for this trip to Taiwan, or my nervousness that morning, or the way I kept carting my bag with me every time we disembarked from the tourbus and walked around. My problem was that I needed to find somewhere suitably romantic to plight my troth, but most of them had other tourists wandering past, or my ears ringing with our guide's admonishments to look at the random animal-shaped rocks (somebody else who's been to Taroko Gorge told me today that there's apparently a Barack Obama-shaped rock formation), it was hard to find that location of inner peace and calm.

And near the end, the only choices were a shrine to hundreds who died during the building of the road through the gorge (not very romantic) or else a wobbly suspension bridge to the other side of a ravine. So bridge it had to be.

In the end, it wasn't so stressful. Not after the horror of walking across an increasingly oscillating structure from which I thought I would shortly plunge to my doom. Although perhaps I should have worried that she agreed to my proposal because otherwise I might not have let her go back across the bridge.

Not that I'm a troll. And I'm not suggesting she's a goat either.

So she said yes, which meant that although I took my girlfriend to Taroko Gorge, I left without one. Which seems a bit of a swizz, until I consider that having a fiancee has some compensation against that. It's taking a little while to sink in (perhaps some of that is the sleep deprivation built up over the last few days), but I'm very happy with my lady and she's the one most capable of making me happy, so she more than deserves a ring with a piece of highly-compressed carbon set
in it.

Today we had dinner with ten of our nearest-and-dearest, and we got free cake from the owners of the restaurant, which suggests to me that we should get engaged more often to benefit from the free food, although the heartless accountant in me has to point out that would be offset by the high cost of all that jewellery. Then back home, to discover aghast that I'm 800 words behind my writing target for today, but since my mind is like a saucepan, inscribed on the side of a cosmic dog, it's probably about time to stop for the night. Toodle doo!


Anonymous said...

Congratualtions James and Jenn! Oh I am so happy for you and I have seen this coming!
Yeah!! Stacy Rose

Candy said...

We should take advantage of the engagement and see how much free food you can get.

Just go round to different restaurants and make your "first" announcement there, the rest will take care of itself :P

Ming said...

Congrats!!!! So excited to hear this news!!! So happy for u two love birds :-) xx

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