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Friday, July 16, 2010

AIT appointment and Steve makes history (honest)

Today we went to the AIT to get Owen’s Visa. IF you are an adoptive family you may want to take note of this. We had an 8:00 appt. When we got there, there were a million people there waiting all outside. Since we had an appt, we went in and through security then to the THIRD floor. It is quite difficult to figure out where to go. The security guard told us to go to the second floor. We went to window 4? To check in, then sat down. They called us by name (listen carefully) and then to window 8. Had to answer some questions and sign some papers. The glass separating you and the worker was opaque-ish and I had to listen closely to understand her. The supervisor had to step in a few times to clarify the question for me. I didn’t want to answer anything wrong. Then down to second floor to pay. It was $404 USD. The worker asked if I was paying in USD or TWD. I brought $400 like we were told…good thing I had a $10.00 with me. I paid with crisp 50’s and a not so crisp folded 10. We were there for 1 ½ hrs. I asked to pick up the Visa today and they told me to come back between 2:00 & 2:30. When I went back, the room was empty and half of the rooms’ lights were out. I went to the window and the same lady came to the window and said “your paperwork is not complete yet, please have a seat”. I thought “how long is this going to take” and she literally came out in 60 seconds. Really no need to have a seat. They give you a packet of papers only to be opened in the U.S. on your arrival in customs.
The cab ride was 20 minutes / 140 NTD

Later we went back to Taipei 101 and went to the top, really it was 89th floor. The view is spectacular from all four sides. I took lots of pics and video. The elevator goes up in around 35 - 40 seconds. It is really fast.

I made history today, no, I really did. We went to Chili’s and I ordered the honey chipolte chiken tenders and the manager came over to me and said “you are the first person in Taiwan to order this”. It turns out that it is new to their menu and was just released for ordering when we walked through the door. The manager came to our table and talked with us for several minutes. Marybeth got a chicken sandwhich and the chicken was HUGE. Even Rebekka commented on the size of it. The manager told us that the chicken is from local farms and not frozen. It does have a different taste from US Chili’s.

Owen has a great night last night. He slept in today until 6:15 ish. Rebekka got up at 5:20 and sunrise is like 4:30 ish. When the sun is up, so is Rebekka. She was wanting Owen to get up so she put some cereal on his pillow thinking he would smell it and wake up. The only thing that happened was he rolled on it and smashed it in bed. He does repeat a lot of what is said but we still have a ways to go. Rebekka said “ he never stops talking”.

They went to bed early and I went out to a night street market. It was pretty cool with a lot of traditional foods. Some appealing….some not so much. I think I was the only American there, it was packed and no way to take kids in a stroller. It is more difficult to people that speak English than it was in China but you get by somehow.

We are going to try to change our flight back to US since we got Owen’s Visa. We may be in LA for a day and pick up our original flight back to Florida. Waiting for confirmation from our travel agent.


  1. Great pics! I loved Taipei 101 building...amazing views. Did you go to the food court in the bottom! And all the amazing up-scale stores!

  2. Glad AIT went well. We were stressed about our appointment, but it was pretty painless. Love the picture with damper baby, we have one of those too! Our daughter even picked up one to bring home and that's still one of her favorite toys from Taiwan.