Taipei feels like a modern city carved out of a jungle. Vines, weeds, and trees grow out of the sides of brick buildings like a first step towards complete reclamation. Taiwanese geckos scream at you from third-story windowpanes like miniature banshees. In my room this evening another goddamned giant spider leaped out of my closet and stared at me until I trapped it in a purple trash can and escorted it outside. Palm trees and ferns take over tin-roofed shacks and vacant lots while abandoned tobacco plantations adorn the city center like fenced-in tropical rain forests. We are surrounded by green mountains and humid, sinuous, mist hangs over damp streets.
The weather has cooled drastically the last couple of days; it feels like autumn in the tropics. Strange to feel like I need a long-sleeved shirt when the temperature dips below 80 degrees Fahrenheit.