$1,672.23–Round-trip coach airfare for two with one stop in Shanghai, not necessarily at the airport listed on the itinerary.
$1,200.00–Five nights at the Shangri-La Hotel Tainan. Presidential suite, lights-out breakfast (all you can gorge on) that includes full Chinese buffet, Western style breakfast buffet, ordering off the menu, or all of the above. You will start your day with a massive waddle. Also includes a happy hour with free drinks and exquisite food which, if you are like us, quickly becomes happy dinner.
$0.00–Amount spent on dinner for seven days.
$3.25–Average daily cost of lunch for two at the noodle shop down the street.
$0.00–Amount spent on coffee and cakes and snacks because the hotel’s Presidential suite package includes all-day coffee/tea/cake/snack service.
10–Hours spent in the gym on the stationary bike vainly trying to work off breakfast and happy dinner.
4–Hours per day spent walking around the city.
$1.50–Bus fare for five days.
$76.00–Cost of a four-hour personalized tour guide who won’t speak to you in Chinese even though that’s what you’ve ostensibly paid him for.
$6.00–Cost of souvenirs which comprised a loaf of Castella pound cake.
$150.00–Cost of two round-trip bullet train tickets from Taipei to Tainan.
125–Pages I conquered in Ulysses.
5–Times I washed my Team Lizard Collectors kit in the bathtub.
2–Pocket umbrellas we bought.
6.50–Cost of pocket umbrellas.
165–Times that people spoke to Mrs. WM in Chinese.
0–Times people spoke to me in Chinese even after I spoke to them in Chinese.
15–Bird species I successfully identified out of a total species list for Taiwan of over 500.
$0.00–Amount spent on tips.
$4.50–Amount spent on postcards and postage. Yes, they still have postcards.
1–Days we got rained on while out tramping around.
5–Nights we planned to go to the Night Market, famed for its food stalls.
0–Nights we went to the Night Market thanks to the Horizon Club’s happy dinner.
$175.00–Amount left over from my 7-day spending budget of $500.00.
4–Pairs of underwear brought.
1–Wend baseball caps lost at LAX.
1–Artsy, kanji-covered baseball caps bought in Tainan.
1–Pairs of pants brought.
1–Pairs of swim trunks brought.
0–Times swim trunks worn.
3–Massages gotten by Mrs. WM at the hotel spa.
0–Times I didn’t wake up between 2:00 and 3:00 AM.
2–Days I stayed awake past 7:00 PM.
24–Hotel staff who recognized us as “The Hungry Davidsons.”