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Errand, Ciaotou Former Sugar Factory, dirt-mound BBQ dinner

Kaohsiung Sugar Industry Culture Park Area 高雄糖業文化園區, Taiwan

2007-07-27 13:57. While everyone else went to the buses to Ciaotou, I went on an errand that was not part of the official tour. Staff member Cash drove me first to Kaohsiung City, to receive my medical insurance reimbursement which was ready.

2007-07-27 14:38. We drove through Kaohsiung City 高雄市 streets, looking for the AIG Insurance building to sign off and receive cheque.

2007-07-27 14:54. Inside the bank which printed the cheque, only a few blocks away.

2007-07-27 15:00. Finished exchanging cheque for cash after presenting my passport and signature.

2007-07-27 15:42. in Kaohsiung City, High Speed Rail Zuoying Station 高鐵左營站, helped Cash buy tickets at the ticket machines for some of the students who would take the HSR home.

2007-07-27 16:24. Back to the official tour. Cash parked the car at the Kaohsiung Sugar Industry Culture Park Area 高雄糖業文化園區, and used the two-way radio to figure out how to rejoin the rest of the tour group.

2007-07-27 17:07. Park tour guides brought us to [高雄] 橋頭糖廠博物館, a small building with exhibits and a film about the historic sugar industry.

2007-07-27 17:35. Getting on the 50-percent-width train for a ride through the park back to the dinner area.

2007-07-27 17:57. BingGe demonstrated how to carefully dig our dinners out of our dirt mounds. While I was away on my Kaohsiung City errand, everyone else here had placed aluminum and newspaper-wrapped chicken, corn, yam, and eggs into their team’s designated pit in the dirt area right beside the tables. I think the next step was they started fires in each pit, then covered it, creating dirt mounds. This was left alone to slowly cook for a few hours so that it would be ready by the time we came back after touring the park.

2007-07-27 18:11. Helping our team dig out, then unwrap the food from the newspaper and alumninum foil. Food was ready if the yam, which takes the longest, was ready. Corn was delicious and easy, chicken was delicious but difficult to manage with only hands and napkins, no knives or forks were available. This buried cooking method supposedly preserves the flavour but I didn’t notice the difference. Yam and eggs weren’t so great because the majority of them from our mound were damaged and dirty from digging. The park did not have lights, so towards the end after sunset so we would have eaten dinner in total darkness had it not been for someone with one of those compact crank-powered lights. We just ate in near-darkness.

2007-07-27 19:05. Done eating dinner.

2007-07-27 19:22. In the parking lot, members of bus B present a gift they made to their bus driver. This was the last day that we would see our bus drivers, who have been with us these past 3 weeks.

2007-07-27 19:37. BL

Kaohsiung Sugar Industry Cultural Park Area

Scrap metal art sculptures, an ice treats shop, former trains

Ciaotou Sugar Refinery (historic)

[高雄] 橋頭糖廠博物館
A sugar industry museum

The small 50 percent width train.

Ciaotou Township, Kaohsiung County

Anaerobic dirt-mound "BBQ" dinner.

Tip 1: With the buried cooking method, dig as an archaeologist would, gently brushing dirt aside, preferably before hunger creeps in and causes fast but careless digging.

Tip 2: Get a compact crank-powered light.

Other: Found a helpful map major Taiwan attractions http://map.travelog.com.tw/googlemap/

permalink written by  monex on July 27, 2007 from Kaohsiung Sugar Industry Culture Park Area 高雄糖業文化園區, Taiwan
from the travel blog: 2007 Overseas Compatriot Youth Taiwan 5th Study Tour (2007海外青年台灣觀摩團第5梯次)
tagged Dinner, DirtMound, BBQ, SugarPark and Ciaotou

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Day 9b

Eureka, United States

That's lunch. There's a lot of information to take in there, let me walk you through it. The juice on the left is a pomegranate raspberry 100% juice drink from Nantucket Nectars (happily no high fructose corn syrup). Yes, those are Trivial Pursuit cards in the sugar dish. They're well loved and placed on every table. Requisite salt and pepper, natch. Did I ever tell you that my great grandfather insisted that there was no difference between katsup and mustard save the color? Yes, well, I can tell, but I don't mind them mixed. Then the good stuff. This place had a heated tureen of bbq sauce. It was de-lish. At the end of my meal I had abandoned any pretense of civility and proceeded to slurp the sauce directly from the small serving cup. NOM! That little betsy in the foil is a "small" chicken sammich. I'm glad I didn't get the large. It was at least a third of a pound of slow white roased chicken meat dumped between a quarter bagette of savory butter infused garlic bread. So damn good. Last but not least are the fried potato wedges. Simple but effective. Was at least two medium potatoes. This monument of nom was brought to you by the good people at Eureka's 'Porter Street BBQ'. If you're in town, go.

I love maps. These folksy ones especially. This is at the 'Porter Street BBQ'. I had just finished a chapter in the pulpy sci-fi book I was reading (Joe Haldelman's "Camoflage") and the couple below the painting had just left.

Eureka I found was truly out of my ability to safely drive. From the hotel I had a two hour ride through misty mountain roads and dog leg turns, steep hills. And that was during the day. I could have made it if I were a coffee fiend with a cast iron stomach. I'll be taking it easy with the stomach abuse for a few more days.

On the way to Eugene I stopped at a state beach. It was a wide beach, a good 100 yards from end of the dunes and scrub to the waterline. Low tide most probably. I saw a raven. It was obviously not a crow, more stately, thicker beak, maybe a little wiser, maybe I'm projecting. They were pecking at large lumps of sea weed. Sacrificing my good taste and respect I startled them a little and captured their flight for your pleasure.

More things I will not be seeing on this trip, damn damn damn. Though that's true, I wonder what my tolerance for this high percentage of oxygen is. Will I merge with the soil and undergrowth on a longer trip? Will my beard grow and branch and be home to birds and squirrels?

This is basically the drive. Toss in some turns and twists and hills and views. I wish I had a fish eye lens for this view business.

Had to stop for water, pulled into this town, Tiberon? Just a little beautiful cove. See, If I had time I could have walked down to the virgin beach, swam out to the rocky island and munched on some wild berries and bark.

Check it, yo. Old dude with a covered wagon. I doubt he has a cell phone or wi-fi in that thing. I could be wrong though, he could be a deep sleeper cell from the civil war. The driver was, yes, a grey old gentleman with a giant beard and leathery face, ancient and patient.

permalink written by  kleer001 on November 25, 2008 from Eureka, United States
from the travel blog: Tijuana to Vancouver
tagged Beach, Lunch, BBQ, California, Raven, Oregon, CoveredWagon and Crows

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