if you ever want to know how my brain functions listen to Spanish radio, count random things in Korean, and take an hour of Chinese yoga…

Oh my goodness, my how time flies… (for the billionth time, right?)! It’s been almost 3 weeks since my last post…and I looked at the calendar today and realized I have officially been in Taiwan for 2 months. Let me recap the past few weeks.

In the last post I was counting down the days for Korea, and now my trip has past. And what an amazing trip it was! The feeling of being surrounded by incredible friends in another country was so comforting and definitely refreshed me for living in Taiwan. It was so cool to breeze through security and immigration within 30 seconds. (This is why I love and can’t get enough of the traveling efficiency in Asian countries…) And I’m not even exaggerating the seconds…I can’t even describe the deja vu…being able to read, to understand some random conversations, and know exactly where I was going to take the subway. It felt…natural…like home. Being greeted with hugs, BBQ, and so much. laughter. these people. their warmth and hospitality…and it’s only been a year… and it felt like only yesterday! My friend and I explored the Gamjeon section of Busan…an area of colorful roofed houses built into the mountains, just overlooking the port and fish market below…with stellar views of the entire Busan area. We toured through the streets, had coffee on a terraced cafe with a stunning view of the city, and roamed back alleyways of flowers, staircases, kimchi pots, old ladies yelling for no apparent reason, and overhanging vines or telephone wires. We also ate so much…coffee, waffle, fruit bing-su, BBQ, 김치, and sesame noodles. I was able to go back to Jangyu and see one of the best women I know, my yoga teacher. We went to a yoga class, then met up my old co-teachers for BBQ and tea. It meant so much to me to see these people I hold dear to my heart. Walking in my neighborhood…seeing the river construction completed, viewing the mountainside with the changing fall colors, and taking in the crisp air. The trip was exactly what I needed to remind myself of the happy memories and spend time with dear friends.

What have you done in a year? It shows how much time passes, make your time count…dreams should be chased, chances taken, and fun had. In one year…I have internationally flown to Korea-Boracay-Korea-U.S.-Chile-U.S.-Taiwan-Korea-Taiwan…I am fully aware it’s a privilege, blessing, and an unforgettable experience…

if you ever need an oasis of palm trees and waterfalls
in the airport…here’s your spot in the Taipei airport
it was the baby feeding room…I don’t make this stuff up!

first deja vu picture of Busan

second deja vu picture

Neil and BBQ at 해운대해수욕장

view of Busan

Korea isn’t complete without a Cafe
playing…
Taylor Swift and Bruno Mars.
On Repeat. The whole CD.
JANGYU~

Noodles!!!

River!
Peppers drying by the river

my school!

yoga wouldn’t be the same without checking
how healthy we are! owww

one of the best women I know! love.
She is so vibrant and filled with life!

yoga snacks at tea time.
Sarah we missed you!!!

my dear friend was actually in America at the time

…but had to stop by…
Brittany and Sarah and everyone else…
Thought of you.
GIMHAE~
pretty.

love them.

Laughter.

BBQ. Day 2.

tea time

BUSAN~

yummy!

back alleyway #1

#2

#3

stellar view

color

orange

recycled material artwork

coffee and beach site.
basically heaven on earth.

Taryn. Laughing.

Terraced Cafe

Seriously.

this food.

selfie.

Last Tuesday (10/15) I made a quick trip to Taipei to sort out my visa documents. And I really do mean quick. I left my house at 7:45 and was in Taipei (a 30 minutes HSR trip away) and finished with my appointment by 9:30. Amazing quickness. The ladies that helped me were so kind. One of their daughter’s lived in NYC. We had a lovely chat. I wandered a few random streets and had a coffee at the “Nice Cafe.” That was the name. It was a great morning, but I was still sleepy from my weekend trip so I headed back to Jhubei early. I had reading competition practice that evening and went to my first Hatha yoga class.
Sunrise from my room
told you it was the Nice Cafe…
                                                                                       

rod iron. my favorite.

mystical looking palm trees hanging in the humid rain

cars.scooters.and signs

it was a happy tea.

outside my school.

On Saturday (10/19), I met up with my TEFL friend in Hsinchu City and met another one of her friends. We ate at a delicious vegetarian buffet for lunch. We then headed for the beach via their scooters…what started as an easy ride turned into an accident…we wrecked, side swiped a car, I jumped off as a passenger, but both drivers fell off and ended up with a few scrapes and cuts…I walked away without a scratch…just a bit panicked. The other girl rode home and my friend ended up coming with me to do some grocery shopping. I bought frozen fruit and a gluten free cupcake mix- yay! As well as a few other goods. We had California Pizza Kitchen pizza for dinner. It ended up being a fun day despite the rough start and freak out moment of shock!

delish. vegetarian buffet.

sunset!

CPK in Hsinchu City

cupcakes!!!

Nikki’s son…

soo stinkin cute!!!
Sunday morning came and I had a great workout, baked cupcakes for the security guards (they are so sweet- they always smile and wave and say either good morning and good night to me every time I walk in the lobby, they also put up with my charades when I need something, and call me cabs.) and my co-teachers who came over for tea later that afternoon. My co-teacher is letting me borrow her desktop computer (Whohoo!) and so we set it up and watched a movie.

This week has been quite successful. In one class, after changing the seating arrangement, and putting a troublemaker in front next to me, he is becoming one of my best students and the class goes more smoothly. I am slowly gaining more control over my classes and it’s beginning to be more relaxed and I can be more fun for the kids. Even in my upper level classes where the kids don’t like to talk I am figuring out how to relate to them…by giving them 5 extra minutes to read or catch up on their homework, by reading the storybook aloud to them, and asking their opinion…one student says to me “Teacher, you are short. Standing makes you look shorter. Please sit in a chair.” I think it makes me more on their level and they feel more comfortable talking with me. In my USA classes, I have been doing extra activities outside their workbooks to make it more entertaining…

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