This MaoXian continues on with more momentum being added on a daily basis! Every moment has such powerful meanings to them. Either it be a dinner that costs all of 2 U.S. dollars but is packed full of cultural goodness, sometimes just weirdness. For example, after dance class the other day, my friend and I regained our “qi” with bowls of ground up peanuts and jhen jhu (pearls from pearl tea) mixed with ice and yogurt as a means of protein. Even transportation has become quite more interesting. I’m renting a scooter through a local here for only twenty bucks a month! A bicycle was great and will still be great for a quick way to school, but a scooter has allowed for me to see behind the scenes and actually venture out farther than the bus system will allow.
Chinese class is becoming more and more interesting as we learn at least 15 new characters a week and thanks to Hou Lao Shi’s excellent teaching, we apply them in real life situations during our class time. I don’t know about my classmates, but I sure don’t let a character go to waste after class. Either it be at the tea shop or the Watson’s pharmacy, I am liable of whooping out any applicable character possible!! With this language, I believe if you don’t use it, you will truly lose it!
Extracurricular activities have come to a slow halt due to midterms this week and next week, but oh did the Mountaineer club literally FREEZE! I embarked with about 28 other Mountaineers last Saturday morning as we had planned to take on Mount Hehaun, smack dab in the middle of Taiwan, or in the middle of the Iceland, I’m not quite sure. It was just like a movie. I was sleeping on the bus due to an all-nighter I pulled from the evening before, and I had awoken to the beautiful sight of this wonderfully green and inviting pasture. Alright, I didn’t feel the bus coming to a stop yet, so I fell back asleep. Little did I know, that sleep was one that lasted long enough for them to drive us into the friggin stratosphere to the point where you couldn’t see the slightest bit of beauty!! It was colder than the coldest of winters in the general Taiwan area, and it had rain along with it!! I am usually the happiest camper there is, but not this time. So, we lugged about 20 lbs. of tents, food, and supplies even further up the mountain and were directed to claim our territory on top of a rocky foundation. OMG. I get chills just thinking about it. I know in Asian culture things are extraordinarily persistent, but come on, sometimes enough is enough. After the realization was developed that half of our next day’s attire were soaked and that everybody was miserable, we repacked everything and trekked back down the mountain and arrived back to Taichung city around midnight. Some experience that was!!
On a brighter, and I mean sunnier note, I made it through alive, I am here to continue on immersing myself into this magnificent culture. One jam packed day at a time, one new Chinese character at a time, one new medicinal discovery at a time, one new dance at a time, and more importantly, all of the ins and outs that come from each and every experience that this society creates.