I missed my Anniversary.
This may be confusing to some since I am currently unattached, a statement I seem to be reiterating a lot lately, but it’s true. July 19, 2012 was the official one month mark of me living in Taipei, as a student, on my own. I CAN’T BELIEVE IT.
I first came to Taiwan with no cell phone, housing, or contacts. I only brought my laptop after a mighty struggle with my parents, and that was so I could write them sporadic e-mails to ensure them of my existence. I wasn't insane per say but driven, and they are similar in appearance.
Looking back now, I am infused with gratitude for all of those who lead me here. First I would thank, in person if I could, my wonderful Chinese teacher at the University of Calgary, Dr. Shu-ning Sciban. If it wasn't for her patience, and ability to make language learning enjoyable I wouldn't of made it this far. It was also through her that I heard about the Huayu Enrichment Scholarship and first applied in March 2012. This then leads me to think of my wonderful roommate Patricia, who encouraged me to apply and believed just as strongly as I did that I would be accepted. I remember the late nights we had eating homemade sweet potato fries and mulling over the future and where we would be. Could I of imagined this? Never.
Once I was accepted March, 11, 2012 my preparations began. The visa and documentations were stressful, but I never was worried about the actual living in Taiwan part. The reason I was so calm, which many interpreted as scared brainless or mock bravo, was because I didn't even know what to be scared of! It was such a new turn of events that I couldn't get worked up about irrational fears or have continual sleepless nights of dread.
That being said, I was not a green-horned traveler. I have been to my share of foreign countries and could rely on those who had much more experience than me, mainly my parents. Thanks to my Mom’s experience working internationally, I gleaned many stories of how to handle custom officials and travel safely being a woman and on your own. My Dad, as always, had great advice and his own adventures to tell. Most importantly though was their confidence and wholehearted support. It can’t be an easy task to send your youngest daughter out into the world, and yet they were willing to do that for me.
More than just my parents and immediate family, I am grateful to all my relatives and friends who take the time to reach out to me; I appreciate your messages and comments. As of today I have 1,000 views of my blog! I know I come from a big family, but even they can’t be re-reading it that many times. It’s a nice surprise to know others are enjoying what I write.
It may seem impossible, but in exactly a month from today July 26, 2012 I will be leaving Taiwan on a one way ticket to Beijing. The days seem so long here but I know my time is getting shorter. Let’s see how much I can pack into the four weeks I have left!