Monthly Archives: August 2009

A Failure

My friend Jess asks, why I am such a failure in love.

Jess, I wonder as well, but you are probably right.

Or maybe I just stop trying.

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Here in Tainan

Taiwan was badly hit by Typhoon Morakot last week, especially in the southern and eastern parts of Taiwan.

The association I am working with is helping local governments in the disaster areas to collect, broadcast and exchange info about rescue activities, donation requests and facilities needed.

American Institute in Taiwan has donated US$250,000 to Taiwan Red Cross. USA and other countries are also willing to provide assistance to Taiwan, but so far Taiwan government hasn’t decided to accept.

Today the association sends me to Tainan, one of the disaster areas in this devastation. I arrived at the disaster management center two hours ago. Lots of volunteers and resouces have already been shipped here. One of my colleagues, GIMI, has recorded the situation with his camera, and has uploaded some photos in his Flickr album. I have observed enormous dynamism and momentum here. It’s exciting for sure to many people.

A typhoon brought 1500 mm of rain to Taiwan two years ago. Experts claimed it’s unprecedented and an exception. This time in some places of Taiwan, more than 2700mm of rain is recorded. Unprecedented again. If without changes in people’s mindsets and policies, there will be more unprecedented climate news in the future, due to global warming or not.

Some say young people are indifferent to most issues. It needs, in fact, just one right issue to inspire them. This time, unfortunately, flood and devastation are catalysts.

Morakot, Typhoon, Disaster

Many people around the world have watched the news about disasters in Taiwan because of Typhoon Morakot. International media all focus on the line “the worst floods in 50 years“. There are lots of updates online from local Twitter and/or Plurk users, but mainly in Chinese. You can see many with the hashtag #taiwanfloods.

As we are trying to help people around the world understand more information, Global Voices prepares a post and numerous updates so far. I also did a phone interview with France 24 English channel the other day.

If you are interested in search flickr photos or youtube video, you can try the keyword “Morakot”, or Chinese characters “莫拉克”. You will probably find more contents with the Chinese keywords.

Downpour and gale really cause calamity this time in Taiwan. Some places receive more than 200 cm (about 78.7 inches) of rain in barely two days. Many people are trapped because of floods.

Images are stronger than words, and they do not need languages to explain in some cases. In this clip, a 3-km bridge breaks into three pieces due to jet stream:

Or a hotel building in the hot spring resort in the eastern part of Taiwan completely falls into water:

Or a dammed lake collapse after typhoon, bringing sudden large amount of water downstream:

More information will be provided, hopefully some good news.