28
Mar
08

“Rosy-fingered dawn” or “The Sun Whose Rays Are All Ablaze” over Alishan

So the big crowd-pleaser at Alishan is the sunrise. We all crashed in this hostel where there were three double-bed bunkbeds crammed in a room with two bathrooms. It was perfectly pleasant and reminded me of my backpacking month in France. My little cell phone alarm woke us up at 4 AM and we headed up for the ridiculously long line to take the mountain train up to see the sunset. The mountain train was very narrow with benches on either side and room for about two people in the aisle clinging to the hand grips for dear life as the train swayed back and forth chugging upwards. The Taiwanese capacity for crowding was as usual rather impressive (though I’ve been in worse). I think the crazily crammed train might have accounted for the odd sensation of a grain of sand lodged in my throat that became a full-on bout of thready voice/sore throat and a cold for the week and a half afterwards. (My last experience with a crazy-crammed train was coming back to Tainan from Hualien, and that one resulted in half the party getting a vile tummy-thrasher for the new year.)

This is the station after most of the passengers had poured out and up the stairs to the viewing platform where there were breakfast shops and at least one guide with an obnoxious bull-horn…

The zoomed shot past all the people…

We didn’t stay here. Instead we followed this path up…

To a mostly abandoned higher platform that afforded views of the mountains all around us.

The sea of clouds completely obscured the valley, and the mountains were only shadows that echoed the clouds. Sometimes I wasn’t quite sure whether the shadow I was looking at was a mountain ridge or a cloud bank.

Sunrise is different from sunsets of my experience (Being a mao toe ing–owl, or yeh mao tze–cat, or any other beings with nocturnal tendencies, I so rarely see the sun, and morning light tends to be outside my span of wakefulness…) The horizon does have that orange glow before the sun rises, but the sun rises brightly, blindingly instead of that slow, easy-on-the eyes large orange ball of a sunset. If I could just get cool sunglasses that I wouldn’t forget in my bag where they get scratched up by my keys…. I just fiddled with the ISO in my camera and looked through the viewfinder to take a break from the sun, but here were the other methods to see the sun.

The other sunrise photographs are here.

Oh, and excuse my nerdiness for quoting Homer’s Odyssey and Gilbert and Sullivan’s Mikado in the subject line…

Advertisements

6 Responses to ““Rosy-fingered dawn” or “The Sun Whose Rays Are All Ablaze” over Alishan”


  1. March 30, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    Your photographs are beautiful.
    It’s making me home sick!

  2. March 30, 2008 at 5:09 pm

    Thanks for the compliment! I’m sorry that they make you homesick though. I guess it just means you have to come back to visit!

  3. March 30, 2008 at 8:34 pm

    Feel free to link and I will return the favor!

    When I went to Alishan I was always too young to be woken up to see the sunrise. This looks absolutely gorgeous though, and I definitely have to go back and see it for myself.

  4. March 31, 2008 at 2:44 am

    Waking up at four AM to see the sunrise takes much more initiative than watching a sunset in the mellow evening– I could see dragging a cranky kid up being quite a parenting challenge!

    Yes– you should go back. My relatives just came back from the states and invited me to join them. If I could get the time off, I would have, though I was just there a couple of weeks ago!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Free Rice

Photobucket
March 2008
M T W T F S S
« Feb   Apr »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31  

Top Clicks

  • None

Blog Stats

  • 108,796 hits

%d bloggers like this: