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Posts Tagged ‘me’

Wrap-up

As the year draws to a close, I’m sitting in my parents’ living room waiting for my father to mix me up a Collins, whatever that is!  Things could definitely be worse.  I think reverse culture shock will be gentle, although the recycling and public transportation are things I’ll miss until I return to Taiwan.

I left Taiwan 17 days ago, and I’ve been home in California for 9.  It’s past time to wrap up this blog and start my new life!  I will, however, have a few back-dated posts that got lost in my drafts folder, so feel free to search for those in your spare time.

Happy New Year.  I’ll see you again soon, Taiwan.

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Airport

I like the wood and white with soft light. It's relaxing.

It’s weird: I’m not filled with excitement or full of thoughts of home.  At the same time, I’m not numb; I think my brain has just put off processing this for a little while.  I remember thinking when I woke up that the rain was falling far too heavily to be tears for my departure, but that’s about the extent of my dwelling on leaving Taiwan.  Perhaps it’s because my last two days have been filled with hassles like taxes and wiring money and packing boxes to mail.

Looks like a temple! Looks like a church!

Now I’m sitting in the airport, in a very nice and spacious departure lounge.  On my way here, I passed a lot of cute little nooks (Taoyuan International’s upgrading and renovating), but my favorite was the prayer area beside the butterfly garden beside the “King-fu Massage.”  The whole area was quite peaceful, kung fu notwithstanding, and there was a lot of thought put into the design.  If you look at the first picture, you can see that it’s quite modern-looking, and if you look at the first and second together, you can see how each prayer room’s door echoes the design of that religion’s place of worship.

Now I just have to wait for the plane and Japan.  Here’s hoping it’s as good as people make it out to be!

I leave you with the butterfly garden.

Terminal 1 is under construction; I hope when they finish, it all has this much green!

 

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35 minutes exactly

At 3:08pm, I got a reminder phone call.  At 3:34, I had X-rays taken.  At 4:09, I was out the door and on my way to the pharmacy.

What was this quick and easy appointment?  Wisdom teeth!  I had been terribly stressed about it because the overwhelming picture of this procedure in the American cultural imagination is of a chipmunk-cheeked, miserable young adult laid up for a day or two eating mush.  So far, the only real problem I’ve had is making myself understood, and frankly, that happens even without marble-mouth and a cotton pad clenched between my molars.

On the downside, they would only take two teeth and there isn’t time to schedule another appointment.  I guess I’ll get to experience this all over again, but the American way.

PS: It’s 5pm, so I get to take out the cotton pad!  The only thing I need to remember is to swallow my spit for the rest of the day.  No spitting it out; it’s all got to go down the pipes.  I didn’t understand why, but that’s par for the course.  Probably something to do with bleeding…

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Music

I bought an ocarina today.  There wasn’t really a reason other than how beautiful it was, but as I looked through the tiny song book that came with it, I found a song that I thought would make one of my friends laugh.  I came out to the landing of the hotel where I’m staying to use the computer, and what song should I hear drifting up from the lobby but “Dust in the Wind.”

That brought on a dose of instant nostalgia as I thought about fun times from high school tinged with the inescapable melancholy of the song, and it all mixed in with my feelings about leaving Taiwan.  I have less than 20 days before I go home and take on the next big phase of my life, which is one of the reasons I came to Jiufen for a little one day/one night vacation.  It’s lucky that Jiufen is so pretty or I’d probably be getting weepy right about now.

I’ll post pictures and more about the town itself when I get access to Bluetooth (tomorrow night when I get back home), but aside from the fact that all the stores are pretty much closed by 7:30, I have had a wonderful day in Jiufen and Jinguashi.  The weather held up nicely and the two towns are gorgeous, and where they’re not gorgeous, they’re excitingly twisty and mysterious.

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Standing invitation

On Sunday, I intend to ride my scooter to Sanxia with my 9-foot-tall coworker riding pillion, and since I haven’t run that little machine in a good six months, I took it in for a check-up.  Since I wasn’t able to start it, I wasn’t surprised to find it needed a new battery, but I took care of that and got it washed and pumped up, all for just $850.

Since the washing took a bit of time, I was able to chat with the two mechanics, and as usual, answered a lot of questions about myself, especially since they see me basically every night as I walk home.  At one point, they broke into Taiwanese and I understood a bit.  When it became obvious I was sort of following, the conversation turned to speaking Taiwanese, whereupon I began bitching about the crazy difficulties.  The mechanic washing my scooter promptly shut me down by telling me that I just need to practice more.  As we finished the transaction, he invited me to stop by and practice any time.  How can I resist?

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Titular absurdities

This challenge always cracks me up, and I’m proud to say I’ve got two long ones this time!  I guess I’m feeling more creative than before

Both are four books long, and the first one requires no additional words of any kind.  Without further ado, I present this mystic mantra:

Sacred hearts ghost-walk the world inside the ear, the eye, and the arm.

Well, lawd-a-mercy!  Crazy things are going on everywhere!

Bless me, Ultima! The starfish and the spider rendezvous with Rama on the island of Dr. Moreau!

Actually, the last one sounds like it could be a code phrase from Captain America.  Was that movie awful or was it awful?!

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Another Chinese essay

To be honest, I’m not exactly sure why my teacher assigned this task, but I quite enjoyed the way it echoed a middle school writing assignment where I wrote as a pair of shoes.  I think?  Maybe it was high school.  Who can remember these things?

This post is a little different from the facebook one in that I’m including my intended translation, same as last time, for my Chinese-challenged friends.  I’ll also link up the Google machine translation because it’s frakking hilarious.

 擬人化的謎語

我跟同伴們一起站著等人來選擇。我們住在大大的館,睡在硬硬的床。誰來看我們呢?研究者、學生、科學家,人類都會在我們的身體自由自在地來找資料、資訊、故事等等。

您找到我了,怎麼搜尋需要的資訊呢?我沒辦法說話,您應該打開我,把我的內臟翻來翻去。不要雞皮疙瘩,這種動作不擾我!我的目的就是幫助您。

我是什麼?

An Anthropomorphic Riddle

My friends and I stand waiting for people to come and choose us.  We live in a huge hall, and sleep on hard beds.  Who comes to see us?  Researchers, students, scientists; all humanity can freely search within our bodies for data, information, and stories.

Once you’ve found me, how do you find the information you need?  I can’t speak, so you must open me up and turn through my viscera.  Don’t get goosebumps; this kind of action doesn’t disturb me!  My only goal is to help you.

What am I?

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