Wow, so ending my third week in Taiwan feels like I’ve concluded a three-month stay!! From the mix of constant hustling and bustling of discovering the next meal to attending class every day, life here for sure is far from boring. Being that I have one of the toughest teachers in the Chinese Language Center, my 200 level Chinese class most definitely feels a step up from mediocre. I had my first test on a completely brand new section just a week and 2 days from starting the semester! My Chinese comprehension is increasing by the day and my journey of self-exploration is coming along magnificently! I am still holding on tight, to the pole that is J My sessions of Taiwanese pole dancing are from ceasing and I have actually been offered a position on the studio’s dance troupe! However, as soon as I get my crazy schedule(s) in control at the university, I will be sure to make a debut on a cutesy Taiwanese TV show one day soon!
Currently, I’m sitting here with a four day weekend ahead of me, thanks to the celebration of the Taiwanese Moon Festival. However, I find myself writing this blog sooner than I expected as a typhoon is approaching the island!!! Yup, Tropical Storm Usagi will hopefully pass by so I can seize this weekend along with this beautiful island’s offerings!! As a backdrop on my desk are schedules for 1/30th of Feng Chia’s clubs that I joined, what a semester this is about to be!
Monday through Friday will consist of 2 hour intensive Mandarin course (1pm-3pm), with a speaking and listening elective to take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays (10am-12pm). Monday will be the day to catch my breath from whatever weekend I just had along with getting back in the swing of character writing, which is an quite an art form. Tuesdays and Wednesdays will be spent studying (of course J), while mixing and matching what I coin as the “Holistic Club,” The Mountaineers club, and Jazz dance.
The holistic club will serve as an excellent gateway of the natural remedies that come along with the Asian culture. The first meeting consisted of testing out acupuncture needles on notebook paper and drinking tea soaked in an herbal flower! Within a couple weeks (or maybe a couple more for a beginner level Chinese speaker/listener), the club promises to provide sessions on gua sha, or scraping. This method is used to summon the stagnated blood that can form due to a sickness or stiffness by repetitive strokes on lubricated skin using a cow bone. That sentence sounded like something out of this world, but it is believed to help expel the stagnation by practically rubbing the skin to a bruise. As unsatisfying I hear this feeling may be, I hear from fellow holistic club members that it really works! So, within a couple months of being in the club, we will be trained in ACUPUNCTURE!! I am not sure if we will just be experts at piercing paper or we will be performing this on one another; however, to be on the safe side, I will just sit this session out!! I will leave that segment of my video for a licensed professional! Wow, moving on, oh..The Mountaineers! The name kind of gives it away. This club goes on bountiful trips around Taiwan to either hike, camp, deer hunt (just kidding), etc. We will have VIP access to the school’s rock climbing wall and will be taking our first camping trip in October!! Jazz dance is self-explanatory and will be a weekly event, hopefully ending with a performance!! If I don’t sound busy enough, as a means of pushing myself, I prepaid for 50 dance classes at Dance or Die. This magnificent creation is a studio consisting of a collaboration of tons of different styles of dance (hip hop, lock, popping, girls style, house, and free jazz). I will like to attribute 10 classes to each style, and as I find the free time and sometimes, strength to force myself into certain classes, I will be gradually peeling back a layer of fear each time. Liberation is what you can call this collaboration of mind, body, and spirit.
I thought I was annoying by relaying this information on the phone, but in typed form, this is a novel! I will now end this and pick up where I left off my documentary update. I’ll leave you all with as many pictures this website will allow me to upload!! Pray that this typhoon goes home so I can enjoy these next few free days! Until next time, zai jian!!!!