Getting Settled in Taiwan

March 4, 2012 Tessa Bradford No comments exist

I spent 2 days looking for a job; I had a few offers, and I decided to take a job with Clover English School. I’ll be teaching full time to kids ages 7 to 15, with around 20 kids in each class. I’ve signed a year long contract, and it’s nice to have the security of a position.

My apartment is already starting to feel like home. Once I’ve got a regular paycheck I’ll be splurging on a few things to make it feel a bit more western, but all in all it’s really comfy. The weather has floated around 75-85 degrees everyday, and today I broke out the tank-tops already.

I went to a wedding in Tainan with Youming, and met tons of his family. The wedding was really more of a reception; the actual marriage had happened before, and consisted of signing a civil contract. The real celebration was a big feast, with the bride coming through, handing out gifts, thanking guests for coming, and changing her wedding dress 3 or 4 times, showing off an array of colorful princess-dresses.

Kevin came to visit last week, because there was a national holiday and we didn’t have to work. I took him on a “highlights” trip, showing him my favorite things in the area. (If you come to visit me, you can expect to have many of the same adventures).

Monday we biked around Lotus Lake, and had a beautiful sunny day for it. We spent lots of time looking at the different temples and pagodas that float along the edge of the lake. We found one temple that had an area filled with hundreds of turtles, and we watched them for awhile. It was a slow moving gladiator games as they all fought for the sunniest perches. It was a great afternoon, and I got to spend more time at temples that I previously hadn’t really seen before, because last time I was there we ran out of daylight. The Confucius Temple at the lake is especially beautiful.

Tuesday we headed up Monkey Mountain with my friend Wesley. It was a different trail than the one I had hiked last summer with TUSA. This trail was much steeper, and a muck trickier climb. But we made it to the top, which overlooked the sea, and we spotted lots of monkeys on the way.

When we headed back down the trail we stopped at a great tree and climbed it. I sort of love climbing trees.

At the bottom of the mountain we stumbled on an entire troop of monkeys, swinging from the trees beside a road through Sun Yet Sen University’s campus. We sat below them and watched them swing and play overhead. Kevin put a water bottle into the crook of a tree and one curious monkey bounded over and picked it up to play with. It was a good end to the day.

March has rolled around unbelievably quickly. I’ve now been in Taiwan for over a month, and things are falling into place. I’ve got an apartment, a job, a resident visa on its way, and next stop is my scooter license. I’ve got at least a year ahead of me, and it’s looking to be a good one.

What are your thoughts?