Scootering in Taiwan: Tip #1 Keep Your Helmet Closed

Scootering in Taiwan

TIP #1

When driving a motor scooter, wear a helmet AND if there is a visor, do not leave it OPEN.

I think there is a law in Taiwan requiring a helmet when riding a motor scooter. With the high accident rate, the law is quite prudent. Because it is usually hot out during the day, I often enjoyed leaving the visor open, to enjoy the natural air conditioning during my drive to teach English class. Yesterday, that changed.

I was driving to Fu Chi School when a large hornet or wasp flew right into my helmet. I felt it buzzing in my hair near my right ear…

Needless to say, it was the fastest I ever stopped a motor scooter driving 40 kmph. I jumped of and threw my helmet off. WHEW!

By the way, there is an interesting phenomena that happens when you have a closed helmet on. The chamber of air inside the helmet seems to act like a fragrance accelerator. Air from the passing landscape gets forced in through the cracks from the helmet into the inner chamber under my nose. There it lingers calmly, for me to smell unfettered by wind. So I have a heightened sense of smell and awareness of my surroundings. It must be a bit like how a dog perceived the world. I swear I could smell the perfume of a woman 10 meters away when I pass her at 30 kmph, not to mention the intensified pig dung, chemical factories, and food vendors I pass.

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