Archive for February, 2007

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Luzhou Picture Post

February 22, 2007

In my week off I’ve spent some time just walking around Luzhou, something I haven’t done since shortly after I arrived.  It isn’t a very attractive city,  so once I got a feel for the layout of the streets I didn’t feel a need to do so much exploring, but this week it’s been nice to wander around a bit.  It reminds me how much more settled in I am than I was this fall when I was hiking about trying to get my bearings.  This morning I walked along the top of the dike on the edge of the city, something I’d never done before.  I added some pictures I took today and a few I already had to create this, my Luzhou collection.  They aren’t the most stunning or exotic sights in Taiwan, but this is where I live:

 My building:

My Building

My street, Minzu Rd. :

Minzu Lu

The view behind my apartment:

Back Window

Me riding my scooter down Minzu:

Scooter on Minzu Lu

Walking along the dike:

Luzhou Dike

The market and the temple:

Market 1

Market 2

The same market at night:

Night Market

So there you have it, home sweet home Luzhou.

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American girls strong, eat steak.

February 21, 2007

Often while riding in a taxi, the cab driver will attempt to strike up a conversation.  Sometimes he speaks good English or I manage a full discussion in Chinese, but most of the time it is a mix of both.  A while ago I had a quite memorable cab ride.  I’ll write the conversation in English but really it was a rather garbled and confusing mix of languages, including a few random sentences of German at one point.

The driver started out typically, asking me where I was from and whether I liked the food in Taiwan.  I told him that I was American and he started in on a long speech about the war in Iraq.  I honestly had no clue what he was saying so I just nodded.  Somehow he got the mistaken impression that I was from Chicago and I didn’t bother to correct him so we talked about Chicago.

He asked how old I was and I told him. 

“You are married,” he guessed. 

“No,” I said. 

“Your boyfriend,” asked the driver, “Taiwanese or American?” 

“I don’t have a boyfriend,” I told him.

“No?” he asked, quite surprised, “Because you are Christian, yes?” 

“No… I don’t think that’s why,” I said. He was silent for a moment, and I thought the conversation was finally over.  Then he spoke up with these words of wisdom:

“Taiwan girls very beautiful.  American girls strong, eat steak.”

So that explains it…

Yesterday I got some more deep insight into Taiwan from another cab driver.

“Taiwan is very very good country,” he said, “No terrorists.”

Sounds good to me.

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新年快樂!

February 17, 2007

Happy Year of the Pig!

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The year is coming! The year is coming!

February 6, 2007

 Sorry I haven’t updated in so long.  I’ve been having serious trouble with my internet connection and besides that it’s just a busy time of year around here.  Truthfully, there hasn’t been a lot to say.  I’ve been working.  My mom was here last week, but mostly I worked the whole time so we couldn’t do a lot.

Fortunately, I only have to work this week and the next and then I get a week off for Chinese New Year!  At the kindergarten I have to perform in a skit about the legend of New Years.  It goes something like this:

Long, long ago there was a terrible monster called “Nian”, which means year. Every New Years eve it would rise out of the sea to terrorize the people.  Finally one year a wise old beggar told the people how to scare the monster away.  They had to put up red decorations because Nian is scared of the color red. They dressed in lion costumes and lit firecrackers and succeeded in sending Nian back to his home in the sea… until next year.

I will be playing the part of a terrorized villiage person. AAAAAH!  Help me!  Help me!

I’m sure I will update later about what Chinese New Year is really like around here.