Touring Taiwan after Morakot?
It is 8 September today – exactly a month since Typhoon Morakot ravaged Taiwan on 8 August 2009.
Disaster rescue and relief efforts have since been established, and ongoing in the places devastated, particularly in the southern provinces of Taiwan. The sweat and tears would stretch over months in view of the unbelievably widespread damage.
Under such circumstances, visitors are continuing to pour into the island as tourists while the island persevered in her tourism promotion.
Will you be there, kind traveler?
Will you be a visitor to the island soon?
Touring Taipei Taiwan within the next 6 months and thereafter?
Do you hope to support the ongoing humanitarian efforts? Wishing that you can contribute in little but significant ways even as a tourist?
Here are 4 suggestions how you can support Taiwan and her people when you are in the island.
1. Continue your Taiwan travel plans.
By coming to tour Taiwan, you are in fact already making an admirable step in contributing to the island and people as they recover and rebuild.
Shop, eat, buy as a tourist do. Travel the railway, MRT, cabs and buses touring the island for her scenic beauty. Share friendly moments buying stuff and services from her amiable people.
Visit the tourist sights. Buy and eat the local delights from the street stalls to the funky themed restaurants.
Keep the island economy going. Contribute your tourist dollar. 🙂
2. Be kind and tolerant a Taiwan visitor.
This would be more needed now than when in peaceful times.
Although a visitor may not sense much in Taipei the capital city untouched by the disaster, the island is in distress.
People are depressed, mourning for many, rebuilding their lives for most.
Locals working and living in Taipei would have families and friends in the rural parts of the island. In other provinces mauled by the storm, places where (recovery) and relief efforts are continuing right this moment as you read.
I recently learnt that the Taiwanese has a disdain for what their Minnan dialect described as “ow kae” – “ow” as in “lousy, poor, undesirable” and “kae” which means “guest” or “visitor”.
May we as visitors not be as “ow kae” in the island. In these difficult months, or any other time. Let’s live out our comforting presence by being gracious visitors!
3. Support Taiwan disaster relief work and donation drives.
When you are in the island, you would likely come across ongoing fund-raising and other efforts.
You may even experience more donation initiatives when you are there in person.
Make a call. Buy a ticket. As much as you wish to, do lend a helping hand – while you are in Taiwan.
4. Be environmentally-conscious Taiwan tourists.
No, we will not discuss here the topic of being eco-friendly travellers.
But do you know – some had blamed the terrible effects of typhoon Morakot on the island environment to the bad state Taiwan has always kept her natural environment?
Indiscriminate acts of encroachment on the island natural environments in the name of rapid modernisation, commerce, or simply indifference had aggravated the magnitude of damage, the critics had pointed out.
A quick tip for the tourist: Take nothing from the natural environment where you visit. Leave nothing you brought along (packaging, trash for example).
As a visitor, hold on to this worthy idea: “Take only memories. Leave only your footprints.”
The people of Taiwan is a resilient bunch!
Your kindness is appreciated. I thank you here.
These are some ideas to enrich your time in Taipei Taiwan, when you visit the island in these immediate months after Typhoon Morakot.
In these solemn times, may your presence help clear the gloom, lift the spirit of the people, lighten their burden in small but sure ways!
* “4” is a number shunned by the Taiwanese as prohibited, even taboo. I know this. Yet these are tips for a noble cause. Let’s begin with these tips, 4 in number they may be.
May your kind hearts be blessed.