Well, That Was Unexpected

Real life is stranger than fiction...depending on which authors you read, of course.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

I climbed Taipei 101

The 101 and its 1900 steps have successfully been scaled by Julie Inc. and the rest of our American/Canadian team, the Eagle Beavers. Yaaaayyy! (Did you know that the canadian mascot is the beaver? Someone needs to travel back in time to reconsider that decision, friends.) In any case, I made it up in a little less than an hour, which was right on target. I have to say that at around the 40th floor I was in pain--the stairwell was windowless and beige and my musical slection just wasnt doing it for me and there had been spome serious farting going on ahead of me. I didn't know how it was going to turn out--would I have the mental fortitudeto make it? But then around the 60th floor, I suddenly got this major jolt of energy and felt super relaxed and got some groovin music on and hipswayed my way up to the top. My face was super red, I'm sure people were scared--it was like the time when I was 10 years old and I kept climbing 4 flights of stairs the top of the waterslide at our hotel over and over and over because it was so much fun, but my family made me stop because my face was so red that it looked like I was going to pass out. I am a very unattractive exerciser--my face changes color and my hair sticks to my forehead and I sweat like a waterfall. I usually try to exercise on my own for this very reason. But it's so worth it for charity. We got some great team pics, though, and Jessie, Andrea and I took a picture with a guy dressed up as an Elvis impersonator--which must have been phenomenally uncomfortable to climb in--but Elvis was actually an incarnation of a super built yoga instructor so it probably didnt take long for him to wend his way up. We felt his presence was yet another sign confirming our decision to go to Graceland after Amy's wedding. Elvis was on a team with Andrew and Konraad, and Andrew was dressed up as a 70s tennis star avec blonde mullet, totally bjorn borg. hysterical! major flashbacks to Luke Wilson in The Royal Tennenbaums.

I will be sending a little something to everyone who donated--mom, beth big kisses. I'm so excited because it seems like they must have raised a really significant amount, and I know the Garden of Hope will use it well. Especially after Jim was telling us yesterday that the laws on prostitution in Taiwan are still a bit vague. I know GOH pioneered the legislation against child prostitution, but I don't know about the rest. Jim was telling us heartbreaking stories about Vietnamese women who are trafficked over here and are used and abused. So there's our next cause!

I took pictures of the Death Star mall aka the Core Pacific/Living Mall at floors 35, 59 and 84--to show perspective. The lower level is nice because you can't see the air pollution with the frightening clarity you can at the top. They gave us white t-shirts after our climb. T-shirts that won't stay white for long if the grey Taipei air has anything to say about it.

It's kind of weird--my 10 year high school reunion was going on at the exact same time that I was scaling the 101. I don't think I ever would have imagined that I would be living in Taipei 10 years after high school. I was such a scared and unadventurous child. I took my first trip abroad 8 years ago. It's just interesting to think back to all the decisions that resulted in getting me here. It was funny because the last song I listened to as I climbed to the top of the staircase, and this is a) cheesy and b) totally revealing my pop culture whoredom, was Breakway by Kelly Clarkson and at one point she says "buildings with 100 floors, swinging round revolving doors, I don't know where they'll take me..." indeed, Kelly, indeed.

Well, just wanted to let you know we made it! Weehee!


Anonymous Julia said...

julie anne, i got a little teary reading this entry. i don't know why. in a good way, i mean. i just think that it's adorable that you hipswayed your way up that building with your brand new red hair. adorable adorable. and i thought back to our trip 8 years ago. sigh...

2:00 PM  
Anonymous Lisa said...

Congratulations Julie!!! You are truly amazing. Charity and I were just talking about your amazingness on our way to Yogurt Mill today (yes, some things will always be there for us to come home to). So anyway, as you were enduring the pain of the climb, I was enduring the pain of the reunion. Yes, I went. Someone had to represent! Spread lots of good words about your amazingness. Will fill you in later. But for now, congrats!

11:21 PM  
Anonymous Bethicus said...

Julie, post some of the pix you took during the climb!

7:02 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

That's awesome! I'm so proud of you guys. And yes, I would love to see your pics. :) (Amen to your beaver comment btw ...)

Btw, can I just say I love Panera Bread?

11:55 AM  

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