My first post

Well, here I am in Citizen Coffee finally putting my Blog into action. I’ve wanted to start a Blog about my life in Taiwan for a little while so that I can share some of the experiences that I have while I’m here with all of you. However, every time I tried to create a Blog on my girlfriend Connie’s computer the menus all came up in Chinese, and which I think I can handle updating things in Chinese, doing a full setup would be a litttle much.

I’ve been in in Taiwan two weeks at this point, and I have to say that I’m really having a wonderful time. Connie and her mother have been nothing short of wonderful to me and I already truely feel like I am part of their family.

I’ve been to a lot of places in the last two weeks, too many to list in this initial posting but I will try to slowly catch up and tell you about this amazing city and life in Chinese culture. It’s interesting really, I’ve already absorbed so much Chinese culture that this place doesn’t seem alien to me at all, it’s actually quite familiar. The only real shock, as usual, is being illiterate, which bothers me a lot. I can’t even guess at the pronunciations of things in Chinese, I either have to know them or not, even if the word I’m looking at is English rendered in Chinese characters. That can be more than a little disconcerting, but I am slowly trying to compensate for it by learning the bo-po-mo-fo Taiwanese phonetic system they use to teach Chinese how to pronounce the Hanzi Chinese characters. I haven’t managed to pass Grade One yet, but I am working hard on it, and hope to pass by the end of the week. *^_^* As I learn them, I am learning more words in Mandarin, and will hopefully slowly manage to be able to really communicate with the people here. All those lessons I took with Min-Min on Sunday afternoons for the past 3 years are finally starting to pay off as I have found I definitely have a “sense” of Chinese grammar even if my vocabulary is still pretty limited.

Just to give you an idea of the weather here, the temperture tomorrow will go down to a frigid 8 degrees….thats PLUS 8 degrees for you Canadians suffering through -20 right now. ^___^ And that is a cold day. Overal, if you want to understand the weather here, Vancouver is the best comparison, except that unlike Vancouver, during the Summer it gets pretty damn hot.

Anyways, time at the cafe is up, and it’s shopping time.

My best to one and all, and I promise to update this page on a regular basis, with pictures too!

take care!

Rob