This river rises above the road in the rainy season
Today we had to get up at 7am because we were moving hotels again. We only had 45 minutes to clean and pack properly before breakfast and after that some last minute jobs.
We were all very tired after last night’s talent show with the top 3 acts being asked to perform at the party on Wednesday. The show was started by our guest judges Kitty and Louis. Kitty (a boy) started via playing the recorder and then they used the speakers to perform some street dance. The bar was set and beaten by the first act who sung a haunting version of halleluiah. There was a variety of dancing displays all different styles. Mr Williamson thought Mr. Kent looked scared of dancers possibly hitting him. There was a ‘magic’ act which involved throwing things to make it seem like they disappeared and trying to work out the line of a book. He cheated and still got it wrong! but the audience found it very funny and enjoyed the performance.
Students developed acts with other pupils from different schools who had only just met them, both dancing groups were very profesional one performing classical ballet and one modern. Several singing acts proformed very well we all enjoyed the verson of Adeles song - how ever the wining act was a comedy act that involved the audience and had brilliant timing and deadpan comments.
Once on the bus we met the park rangers who told us the history of the building of the roads - organised during the Japanese occupation of Taiwan and how they were made by hand and how many people had died - over 200 on one stretch alone.
We stopped to take pictures of the Swallow grotto and to learn about the river and how the river rises fifty metres every year in the rainy season.
At the Buluowan village visitor centre we met the Taiwanese students again and watched a video on the natinal park. We also watched an aboriginal lady weaving - it takes three weeks to weave one peice of cloth. We walked up the trail in the heat to the aboriginal village then returned to the visitor centre with the Taiwanese students for a Taiwanese lunch. Then they performed a play for us about the poet who drowned centuries ago and in whose honour the dragon boat festival is held, and taught us a dragon dance.
We took the coach past the Tunnel of Nine Turns to the Shakadang Trail where we walked under the rock face up the mountain gorge.
The coach then took us to Chingshui cliffs which are one of the natural wonders of Taiwan where we had a wonderful sea view. The Taiwanese students left us there and we continued to Hualien Hero Hotel. Where some of the rooms are in traditional style (mattresses on the floor).
At the hotel we were given a warm welcome by some of the Taiwanese students.
We then went into Hualien for a traditional McDonalds or Pizza hut and retail therapy, followed by project work until 9pm.