Somehow I have managed to get on the mailing lists for several women’s apparel catalogs. I have started receiving one called Title Nine and another one by Athleta. I have *not* bought anything from the catalogs yet so I cannot speak for the quality of the clothing. But that may change soon – I am very tempted by a few of the items in the spring catalogs. While the companies’ main focus is on athletic wear for women, the Athleta catalog has an entire spread devoted to clothes that travel well, and the Title Nine website has a category devoted to travel. You may be wondering how (or if) this is adoption-related. Well, if you recall from our trips to Taiwan, we packed very light. We took only carry-on bags with us, and clothes that washed quickly and easily, and were comfortable for traveling. I mentioned some of my favorite clothes for traveling in this blog post here. If you are traveling and want to pack light, I would suggest checking out these websites. I always look for quick or fast drying in the description, and from what I have learned, it seems spandex, nylon and/or polyester blends are better travel companions than 100% cotton. And for Taiwan, I always looked for clothes that were lightweight, since the climate was so hot during the times we traveled. If you have bought any clothing from either of these companies, I would love to hear your opinion on the clothing.
Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category
I’ve consolidated all of our travel-related posts under a new tab at the top of our blog. Between our two trips to Taiwan, we have stayed in seven hotels, traveled the High Speed Rail in both business and economy class, taken a “slower” train to Taroko Gorge/Hualien and back, and had a wonderful time exploring all that Taiwan has to offer. I hope we will be able to return some day, and share these experiences with our children as they grow older. (Our previous trip is documented under the 2009 Trip tab.) If you are heading to Taiwan soon, I hope you have a great time!
I took hundreds of photos while we were in Taiwan…of people, of food and the places we visited. And, of course, I took a hundred or so photos of our new son, too. I’ve selected my favorite 12 photos from our trip – here they are…
I felt like I was on the Amazing Race during our trip home from Taiwan. When we landed in the US, we had to go through Customs and Immigration, then a security screening again before connecting to our domestic flight.
Our plane landed 10 minutes early, and we had a total of 90 minutes to catch our flight. I thought we may have a problem with Immigration, since we had to stand in the non-US citizen line with our son’s paperwork. The non-citizen line was about 100-people deep when we got there, so we showed an airport employee our passports and explained we had adopted a child overseas. He insisted we move to the US citizen line – we met a nice Immigration officer who stamped all of our paperwork and we were done with that within 10 minutes (I’m sure it would have taken an hour or more if we had to stand in the non-citizen line). Then we went through Customs, which only took a few minutes. Next, we were herded into the Security line. That’s where we stood for at least 30 minutes as the line wrapped around the Security area and backed up into the Customs area.
We completed the security screening at the time our connecting flight was scheduled to begin boarding. But we were in the wrong terminal. We raced through the terminal to the train connecting the terminals. When we finally made it to our gate, the gate attendant announced our flight was boarding (the plane was about 5-10 minutes behind schedule). We made it on the flight…sweaty and winded, but happy to have made it. And a short time later, we were reunited with all our children, who absolutely adore their new little brother.
We’re staying at the W Hotel in Taipei for the last few days of our trip. The rates for this hotel start about $US275/night. However, we applied for Starwood Hotel credit cards a few months ago, and once you use the cards, you receive 10,000 points to use at any of the Starwood hotels around the world. For the W Hotel, 10,000 points is equivalent to a free night’s stay. So we had two free nights just by using our credit cards. Then we booked our airfare and bought a few items using the card. The points from those purchases were enough that we were able to book our third night at this hotel for $US60. So, three nights at this hotel is costing us $60 total.
Let me just say this is the most modern, hip hotel in which I have ever stayed. We wondered when we walked in if we would be acceptable to stay here, if we were cool enough. But the staff has been friendly and accommodating, and everyone loves our baby boy.
The hotel design is retro and has an artsy feeling everywhere you go. Our room has floor-to-ceiling windows, looking out at Taipei 101. The location is convenient to the MRT (the City Hall station is downstairs from the hotel), Taipei 101, restaurants, the eslite department store, Starbucks, etc. Two major drawbacks for this hotel, though: they charge for Internet use in the rooms ($NT480/day = $US17/day); and the breakfast buffet, while delicious, is way overpriced at $NT750/person ($US26/person) plus a 10% surcharge. This morning we had breakfast at a Burger King in the food court below the hotel, where there is also a Mister Donut shop and some bakeries.
Here are a few photos of the hotel. . .