The Super Friendly Taiwanese Woman in Taichung City, Taiwan.

This happened last January 21, 2018.

On a bit chilly morning in Taichung City, we were searching for a specific place but couldn’t find it. We’re apparently lost.

A woman was walking briskly, but I still took my chance to ask for directions. It appeared as though she’s in a hurry, but she stopped. She gave us a piece of her precious time by looking earnestly at the address that I was showing to her.

She started asking us questions, like “Where did we come from?”, “Where’s our working place?”. I told her that we’re from the Philippines and our workplace is in Zhunan. There were three of us. Her English is very good and clear.

She pointed where the address is particularly located, and she explained that we’re actually a bit far from the establishment that we’re searching for. Seven blocks away!

Afterwards,  she said “bye-bye”.

We thanked her for giving us directions and then she left.

The English-speaking, friendly and kind Taiwanese woman.
On the left is her red car, and that is actually her. I intentionally uploaded a blurry image to protect her identity. What if she doesn’t want to be promulgated?

Read: Taichung flower farm

A few moments later. She came back and offered us a ride!

She actually fetched us to the road that we’re searching for.

Thank you, anonymous lady. You know who you are.

Why do I love Taiwan?

The answer is staring at you right in the face! ❤

#friendlyTaiwanese


Meanwhile, here’s a short video that I made while we’re in Taichung.

 

17 Online Banking Safety Tips! (with Tagalog translations)

Presented here are indispensable Online Banking Safety Tips.

Updated on January 29, 2018


This website is about Cycling, but this time this particular post won’t be related to it. As a Computer Technician for 17 years, and as a Filipino, I am more than willing to impart my accumulated knowledge and experience for the sake of my Kababayans(countrymen) and for anyone that may find these tips helpful in regards to online banking. As Technicians, we don’t only deal mostly with hardware. We also extensively tackle software, security and networking issues, as you might have initially guessed. Nevertheless, this is also due to the rampant incident that took place just recently to the account holders of a certain bank in the Philippines, my homeland.

Read: The Beautiful Cape of Good Hope in Houlong, Taiwan

Read: The Stunning Taichung Flower Farm in Taiwan

online banking
Image courtesy of Pexels

Online Banking Safety Tips:

Safe online banking tip #1 – Banks never ask for your password/s! DO NOT reveal your password/s to Anyone! DO NOT GIVE OUT YOUR OTP(ONE TIME PASSWORD) TO ANYONE!  Ang mga bangko ay hindi kailanman hihingiin ang iyong password/s! HUWAG ibubunyag ang iyong password/s KAHIT KANINO! HUWAG NA HUWAG NINYO PONG IBUBUNYAG KANINUMAN ANG INYONG OTP(ONE TIME PASSWORD)! 

>Refrain from using public/rented computers when having online banking. SOME (NOT ALL) of the public computers are not properly configured for maximum online security.  Iwasan ang gumamit ng mga pampublikong computers kung gagawa ng anumang hakbang na nauukol sa online banking. IYONG IBANG (HINDI LAHAT) pampublikong computer ay hindi wasto ang pagka-set up para sa maximum online security.

>Download banking apps ONLY from Google Play or App Store. Google Play is owned by Google and you can be sure that online banking apps that are published in this company are all safe to install. Mag-download ng banking apps na galing LAMANG sa Google Play or App Store. Ang Google Play ay pagmamayari ng Google at tayo ay nakakasiguro na ang mga online banking apps na galing sa kanila ay safe i-install.

>Take advantage of these security features:
Multi-factor authentication (MFA)
Two-factor authentication (2FA)
Two-step verification or two-step authentication
Samantalahing gamitin ang mga security features na nailahad sa itaas.

>Uncheck UNKNOWN SOURCES in your phone settings to prevent unauthorized installation of harmful app/s in your phone. Do this by going to Settings->Lock screen & security->Unknown sources. I-uncheck ang UNKNOWN SOURCES sa inyong phone upang maiwasan ang unauthorized installation ng mga harmful app/s sa inyong phone. Sundin ang procedure sa taas.

>If you have a Personal Computer and you’re using it for online banking, then make sure that it is installed with a genuine OS and is regularly updated. Kung meron kang sariling computer na ginagamit sa online banking, then siguraduhin na tunay at hindi peke/pirated ang OS nito at dapat ay palagi ding updated.

>Ensure all your phone apps including your phone’s software are always updated. This also applies to PCs. Siguraduhing updated palagi ang phone apps, at kabilang na dito ang mismong phone’s software. Isaalangalang din ang PC at mga apps nito.


Anti-virus, Anti-Malware and Firewall are recommended for safe online banking experience.

>Istall an antivirus for your PC and for your smartphone as well. For your PC , it’s recommended that you must have an anti-virus, an anti-malware and a firewall. Only one anti-virus software is recommended to be installed, to avoid slowing down your system. Update them and scan your PC/Phone regulary. Maglagay ng anti-virus  at anti-malware sa PC at smartphone. Isang anti-virus lang ay sapat na. Huwag mag install ng dalawa or higit pa upang hindi bumagal ang inyong computer/phone. Tignan ang mga download links sa itaas.

>Refrain from having online banking transactions through Wi-Fi especially in public hotspots. Install password also for your personal wireless router/portable hotspot. Iwasang magsagawa ng online banking transactions sa mga public Wi-Fi. Lagyan din ng password ang sariling wireless router/portable hotspot.

>Having hard-to-guess passwords is a must. (Example: 565Hk67Fgt98Jlkf) It’s also much better to have a screen lock on your phone. Mas maiging gumamit ng mga mahirap hulaang passwords. Inererekomenda ring lagyan ng screen lock ang phone.

>To avoid being victimized by skimming devices, it’s better to use ATMs that are located in places where security personnel are always present. Para maiwasang mabiktima ng skimming devices, piliing mag-withdraw sa mga ATM na palaging may bantay na mga security personnel.

>Report to your bank immediately all cases of any loss or in any unusual transactions received through e-mail. I-report agad sa inyong bangko kung nawalan ng pera or sa mga kahinahinalang transaction reports na natanggap sa e-mail.

Phising is one of the primary methods of attackers in online banking frauds.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas info for safe online banking.
Vital info from the Central Bank of the Philippines for safer online banking. (used with permission)

>Beware of Phishing. This term derived from “fishing”. Attackers use emails as bait that are especially cloaked to appear as legitimate. Don’t hesitate to report to your bank any email that you suspect as unusual. Alamin ang Phising. Ito ay galing sa salitang ‘fishing”. Gumagamit ang mga attackers ng pekeng email(pain) para makapanloko. Huwag mag-atubiling i-report sa inyong bangko ang anumang kahinahinalang e-mail.

>It’s much better not to reveal all your personal info online, especially birthdays and birthplace. Mas maiging huwag ibunyag ang lahat ng personal info online lalong-lalo na ang araw at lugar ng kapanganakan.

>DO NOT open suspicious or unsolicited emails! Delete them immediately. HUWAG io-open ang mga kahina-hinalang emails. Kung hindi familiar sa ‘yo ang email, mas mabuting i-delete mo na siya kaagad. Maaring galing yan sa isang phishing site or isa siyang virus.

>*Always pay attention to the Address Bar. Make sure that the website you are visiting has “https” or the PADLOCK sign. Example: https://rohdelb.com. “s” means secure. All sensitive information, like names, birthdays, or  passwords that you enter on that particular website are encrypted and secured. This prevents man-in-the-middle attacks. Google itself, displays warnings for websites that are not equipped with “https”. Pansining mabuti ang “address bar”. Siguraduhing may “https” or PADLOCK sign ang website na binibisita. Example ay: https://rohdelb.com. Lahat ng sensitibong impormasyon gaya ng pangalan, kapanganakan o passwords, na iyong ibabahagi sa website na yan ay encrypted o di kaya’y hindi bastabasta nababasa ng sinuman. Protektado ka sa tinatawag na “man-in-the-middle attacks”. Ang Google mismo ay nagbibigay ng babala, sa mga oras na ikaw ay bumisita sa isang unprotected website.

tips for safe online banking
Example of a secure website in the address bar of a PC. Notice the Padlock sign and the “https”.

Helpful links to check out in case of illegal online banking activities.

>Here are helpful links to report to if ever you’ll encounter malicious websites. Phishing page, spam, and malware.

 

Read: Luchang- A Village in the Clouds

Read: Things to do in Zhunan, Taiwan


*Most of the tips that are stated above are applicable to Android and Windows OS and perhaps are also relevant to other platforms as well. Karamihan sa mga Tips na nasa itaas ay para sa Android at Windows OS at maaaring appplicable din sa ibang platform.

 

Online Banking tips from my own experience, personal knowledge, and acquired through extensive research.

These tips will not ensure a 100% security, but will significantly improve your overall online banking experience if carefully followed. Ang mga tips sa taas ay hindi  garantiya ng 100% na seguridad, subalit labis na makakatulong sa inyong pangkalahatang online banking experience kung ang mga ito’y susunding mabuti.

 

Did I miss something? Please leave your suggestions and questions at the comment section below.

 

Like and SHARE to spread awareness!

 

* sometimes the address bar of a webpage displays a warning even though the site you are visiting is safe. This is due to ads that are being served on that particular webpage.


Read: Nanliao Seaside Bike Ride in Hsinchu, Taiwan

Read Direct Hiring of OFWs in Taiwan

A Ride to Luchang 鹿場 A Village in the Clouds, Nanzhuang, Miaoli, Taiwan

Luchang 鹿場 is translated as “Deer Field”.

A high-altitude village that sits atop a 916-meter above-sea-level mountain. It is located in the mountainous and stunning  Nanzhuang, Miaoli, here in Taiwan. A haven for Cyclists, Mountain Hikers, Travelers, Adventurers and Nature Lovers.

Cycling up to this place reminds me again of the movie, “Warriors of the Rainbow” / “Seediq Bale”. A Taiwanese movie that’s based on true historical events.

Luchang 鹿場
The Fairy Valley 神仙谷 can be seen below.

 

Check out my RELIVE ride.

Perhaps, this spot was once, one of their hunting grounds, hence the name “Deer Field”. I’m talking about the Atayal 泰雅 people to be specific, a certain group of Taiwan Aborigines here in Miaoli.

Aborigines have been here thousands of years before the arrival of Han Chinese people. Guess what? They’re actually related to Filipinos and to other numerous  Austronesian people like the Malays, Indonesians, Maoris(Hawaii & New Zealand), etc.  To Filipinos, our closest genetic relative are the Amis People of Taiwan. This is also strongly supported by the genetic studies that have been conducted before.

How did their ancestors manage to get up to these heights? And most importantly, how did they travel from country to country? They didn’t have advanced pieces of machinery before!

According to a BBC documentary, many of our ancestors were highly skilled sailors. A  certain man that they interviewed could even effectively navigate just by only looking at ocean waves! Others stare upon the heavens and rely on the stars for navigation during the night.

There were also land bridges before and were washed away when sea level eventually rose due to global climate change. Perhaps, this definitely explains how our ancestors efficiently and effectively traveled from island to island. Do you have any other theories? Feel free to leave your comments at the end of this post.

 

Atayal people Aparrel in Luchang
Their apparel has a striking resemblance to that of our  Cordilleran brothers in the Philippines. I took this image upon arrival in Luchang. If you’ve been to Baguio City in the Philippines or in the Mountain Provinces, you’ll instantly notice the striking similarities of their clothing. *(I took the image with permission from an elderly resident).

Cycling all the way to Luchang

If you’ll cycle your way all throughout Luchang village, then  I would have to remind you, that this is not a  run-of-the-mill ride.  Ascents in here are not ordinary.  Perhaps that’s the main reason why some cyclists don’t really frequent this place.

 

The way to Luchang is the same one that leads to Fairy Valley.

Fairy Valley Restaurant in Nanzhuang
Fairy Valley Restaurant

 

Fairy Valley Falls in Nanzhuang, Miaoli

 

 

Fairy Valley in Nanzhuang

 

You just have to get past the spot where this waterfall is located. Go straight ahead and it would take you approximately 30 minutes via bike before finally arriving in Luchang Village. Be informed that there’s no bus that passes through this route. I haven’t spotted any that goes all the way to Luchang, unlike in Xiangtian-hu.

Hiking trails can also be found in this area. The famous one is in Jialishan. I once attempted to climb this point on my bike and eventually reached the starting point of the hiking trail. But I don’t completely advise cycling up to this point because the road is not yet specifically developed for Cycling. And in case you’ll decide to move along, then proceed with caution.

One thing more, the last time I went to this place, I was chased by a pack of dogs. Perhaps, there were five of them. They’re at least domesticated, but then they’re still dangerous. So, if you’re planning to hike to this trail, then you’d rather ride in an enclosed vehicle such as a car or a van. The road is a bit narrow too, but still good and safe enough to accommodate small vehicles.

During my ride to Jialishan, I also passed through an area where a landslide actually occurred. An isolated building that resembles a mini-museum is actually abandoned due to the rubble that landed on its roof. But in spite of that, the best part was when I actually witness right before my eyes a sea of clouds(image below).

I still regard this event as the best ride of my life. It always reminds me of the quote, ”Adventure may hurt you, but monotony will kill you”.

En route to Jialishan.

 

Check out my Ride to Haowangjiao/Cape of Good Hope

 

As I push ahead on my way to Luchang, I spotted these:

bon-bon
This is my first encounter with such plant. It is planted in front of a house. I don’t know what it is called, so I’ll just call it “bon-bon” because it reminds me of the adorable Moogle with a fluffy sphere on its head in Final Fantasy video game.

 

 檳榔, Betel Nut.
Betel Nut Trees in Sanwan.The main ingredient of檳榔 (nga-nga in Filipino).

 

Papaya Saplings
Papaya Saplings along the road.

 

 

Papaya Trees
Papaya Trees in Nanzhuang.

 

Sakura Trees
Sakura Trees with Rice field in the background.

 

Check out my post on Yongheshan Loop,  Sanwan.

 

Kiat-kiat or Mandarin Orange
Kiat-kiat or Mandarin Orange in Nanzhuang.

 

Pitaya/Dragon Fruit plants
Pitaya or Dragon Fruit Plants.

 

Tri-Mountain National Scenic Area Rock

Pink Wild Flowers.
A field of wildflowers In Nanzhuang.

 

bike ride to Luchang
Near this spot are the Hanging Bridge, Nanzhuang Old Street, and Nanzhuang Visitors’ center. Further right is a Family Mart convenience store.

 

Mural depicting the Atayal People.
A large Mural depicting the life of the Atayal People.
Mural of Taiwan Aborigines
Mural of Taiwan Aborigines that is displayed beside the road that leads to Luchang.

 

A sign in Nanzhuang with combined Mandarin and Native Languages, Saysiyat is another group of Taiwanese Aborigines. “potngor ila” is referring toThe Heavenly Lake or The Xiangtian Lake.

 

to Shensian Valley
Get past ahead of Shensian Valley in order to arrive at Luchang.

 

Camping out in Nanzhuang.
Hanging Bridge in Nanzhuang. There are spots in here where tourists can literally camp out.

 

Balay in Native Taiwanese
This sign roughly translates as “Song of Static Camping Site”. What really caught my attention is the native word “balay”. In my native Filipino dialect, “balay” means “house”. I somehow spontaneously felt a connection.

 

Newly made barrier in Fairy Valley
A newly paved road and a newly made protective barrier for motorists and cyclists. You will certainly pass along this point right before arriving in Fairy Valley.

 

Senshian or Fairy Valley
Lovely, isn’t it?

 

Inn in Luchang
A Bed and Breakfast Inn @850 meters above sea level in Luchang 鹿場.

 

Luchang Village
Luchang @ 850 meters above sea level.

 

Luchang Village Inn
Tourists can camp out here. They literally set up their tents inside.

 

Luchang Village
Luchang @ 916 meters above sea level.

 

Ginger in Luchang Village
Ginger grown in the mountains.

 

Medicinal concoctions in Luchang
Medicinal concoctions for sale. Rattan wine for reducing uric acid and a certain kind is intended for blood pressure regulation.

 

(perhaps)Spices in Luchang.
I really don’t have an inkling of what these really are, but they’re definitely for sale in Luchang.

 

Atayal's Women's dress
A traditional Atayal woman’s dress.

 

Atayal's Artwork

Atayal’s Artwork in Luchang Village.

 

 

@916 meters above sea level. RELIVE APP

 

Luchang Village in Nanzhuang
Luchang. A Village in the Clouds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check out my blog on The 17-Kilometer Scenic Coastal Area in Hsinchu