Cold air mass coming
Temperatures may drop to as low as 12ºC on Wednesday as a cold air mass from the north is expected to move south this week, the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday. The bureau said that temperatures started falling yesterday as seasonal winds from the northeast became stronger, with highs in the north and east dropping to 26ºC to 27ºC. It also rained in northern and eastern Taiwan, as well as on Matsu. For today, the bureau has forecast that highs in the north and the east may drop 3ºC more to between 23ºC to 24ºC. Lows will be around 20ºC, it said. Temperatures are expected to drop nationwide tomorrow, with the highs in the north down to 15ºC. Residents in the north and central Taiwan may see the temperature fall to 12ºC.
Hotel welcomes blind guests
The Grand Hotel hosted a party yesterday to welcome 35 visually-impaired Japanese tourists and their family members, as well as 30 guide dogs that came with them as special guests in their deluxe rooms. The tourists, who arrived over the weekend, learned about the tour through the All Japan Guide Dog User Association. The tour is part of the bureau’s marketing strategy to target Japanese tourists. It was inspired by the Japanese movie Quill (再見了,可魯), which was adapted from a true story of a Labrador that was trained to become a guide dog and changed many blind people’s lives in Japan. Last year, the Tourism Bureau invited the association’s representatives to come and inspect Taiwan on behalf of the blind tourists. The association then arranged the tour. Members of the group are from all over Japan and will return on Wednesday. They will be visiting tourist attractions in northern Taiwan that include Taipei Baoan Temple (保安宮), Yehliu Geo-Park (野柳地質公園) and Jiufen (九份).
Dancer to open Games
An 83-year-old Taiwanese dancer, cherished as a national treasure, has been invited to perform at the opening ceremony of the 2009 World Games next July in Kaohsiung City, officials said yesterday. Lee Tsai-er (李彩娥), a renowned dancer and dance instructor in southern Taiwan, and her students will be part of the program to entertain the 4,600 athletes from some 100 countries when the Games opens on July 16 for 11 days of competition in various athletic events. Born in 1926, Lee was Taiwan’s first dancer to pursue further training in the theory and skills of classical ballet and creative dance in Japan. She returned to Taiwan at 19 and began to combine ballet skills with Taiwanese folk dancing and modern dance. Although Lee is now a great-grandmother, she still views dance as her life and has never talked about retirement. She still spends at least two hours each day practicing various dance skills and training her dance class students.
Run sees record turnout
The annual Taichung running event was held yesterday in the city, with Taichung Mayor Jason Hu (胡志強) on hand to cheer on the record number of runners who participated. Taichung Deputy Mayor Hsiao Chia-chi (蕭家旗) led the 23,000 runners from a city park early yesterday morning in the 27th year of the run. Following the run, a wide range of activities were staged in the park where the run began. The city government, which organized the event, announced that next year’s run will be organized as a marathon.
FOSSIL CLUES: The bushfires resulted from a positive Indian Ocean dipole event, when the region east of the ocean becomes drier, professor Shen Chuan-chou said The bushfires that swept through Australia last year were connected to a phenomenon known as the Indian Ocean dipole (IOD), which is expected to become more frequent due to climate change, a geologist studying coral fossils said yesterday. National Taiwan University Department of Geosciences professor Shen Chuan-chou (沈川洲) since 2001 has been working with Australian and US researchers to study climate systems in the Indian Ocean. Led by Australian National University Research School of Earth Sciences professor Nerilie Abram, the team published a paper on IOD in the journal Nature on March 9. The bushfires resulted from a positive IOD event, when the
Senior judges yesterday met to discuss the constitutionality of a law that makes adultery a criminal offense, before being ordered by Judicial Yuan President Hsu Tzong-li (許宗力) to set a date for a constitutional interpretation within the next month. The judges met to discuss Article 239 of the Criminal Code on offenses against marriage and family, after 18 judges had called for a constitutional interpretation of the issue. Taipei District Court Judge Lin Meng-huang (林孟皇) said that while he had previously tried adultery cases and never questioned the law, his feelings changed when trying a case last year involving baseball star Wang
Instead of hating the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), help change it, KMT Chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) said, as he urged young people to join efforts to reform the party. As the nation marked Youth Day on Sunday, Chiang said in a Facebook post that he wanted to remind people that “the KMT used to be very young.” Now, when people think of the KMT, they equate it with older people, he wrote. “Even if [the KMT] is a 100-year-old party, it must maintain a young mentality, and understand what young people want and what they want the KMT to do,” Chiang wrote.
A survey has found that 37.3 percent of transgender people in the nation have experienced gender-related discrimination or bullying in the workplace, the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights said yesterday. The alliance’s survey showed that 55.41 percent of transgender people said that they had been afraid to use a public restroom, 18.53 percent had been harassed or attacked in public, while 15.83 percent had been afraid to ask a police officer or other professional for help. The survey, conducted from March 14 to Wednesday last week, was based on 518 valid responses from transgender people aged 14 to 78, the