One of my biggest fears before this trip was the knowledge that I was not bringing any really good friend with me. Well, I am traveling with a group of current and previous classmates, but it is no one I will do everything with. To get rid of this fear I decided I’d better just face it and try to do things on my own. So I spent my first 24 hours in Taiwan on my own.
I started off yesterday night with simply walking out the hotel looking for dinner. The streets around my hotel was a really nice area with lot of stores and interesting places. I was mesmerized by all the colors and sounds and barely made it across the streets because of the heavy stream of scooters.
Today I woke up early and spent some time reading maps and learning how to use Google maps properly. As soon as I felt ready I packed a backpack and took a really long walk. There are plenty of good pictures which in will upload as soon as possible.
I explored streets, found a huge food market, made my nails, checking out expensive stores (too pricy) and low-end street markets (but I am not ready to start bargain yet). I got quite a few good conversations and took any chance to ask for the way or approach someone. Evey chance to use a language is a good chance.I spent this summer feeling a bad for not spending time on reviewing my Chinese, but now when I’m here speaking and listening is no problem. I even feel better than when I left Wuhan … But that’s not possible is it? I don’t understand everything and there are so much I don’t know, but it is like the knowledge I already have is enough for me to get around a place and explain what I mean.
When I decided to actually meet up with my friend again I ended up walking far in the wrong direction. I got very late … But at least I got a good exercise around the city.
So how was it being alone? It was actually very easy. Living alone in a hotel was more nice than scary. After moving so much lately and living simply I enjoyed having my own room and no people around me instead of using things that belongs to someone else. Being outside alone was also really simple. I think it made it easier to get good conversations with the locals. And it was nice exploring all those stores without having to wait for anyone else. When I felt anxious I just focused on trying to walk like I felt confident and knew exactly what I was doing. It helped.
But now the lonely time is over and I’ll move to a way more crowded place. First I’ll just sleep my second night in this AC cool room, and then I’ll move into the student way of life. I’ll keep you updated!
Strongest impressions of Taiwan so far:
#2 Super Friendly
#3 Scooters everywhere