When we first arrived we heard the phrase, “I don’t have American time.” It was confusing. Aren’t Americans always rushing someplace? Isn’t our life in Taiwan just a little bit slower?
But our Chinese teacher finally clued us in. American time is leisure time. American time is time to read and follow Facebook and hang out.
American time is time to not work.
The Taiwanese work. They work hard. They work long hours. The students go to school, and then cram school, and then do their homework before getting not nearly enough sleep. The small business owners are always in their shops or stalls.
We have American time.
This is a beautiful little video of Taichung and surrounding areas, well worth watching.
It’s a beautiful morning. Still warm, but comfortable now. The sun is shining through the banana tree leaves, and the clouds are fluffy and gorgeous.
As we were driving home the other day through similar lovely weather, Dan mentioned that he had an idea for his Chinese name. We have a friend who chose a name which translates to Handsome Dragon Dragon. It raises some eyebrows, but he figures it’s his choice and that’s who he wants to be.
Dan wants his Chinese name to be Little Bunny Foo Foo.
(All together now…Little bunny foo foo, hopping through the forest…)
Typhoon Matmo is headed straight for us. While that sounds dire, Taichung is actually pretty well protected. Most typhoons sweep in from the Pacific Ocean and hit the east coast and mountains in the center of Taiwan before eventually dumping rain on Taichung. Even so, we are looking forward to the Taichung equivalent of a snow day. The big billboards around town are furled in readiness for the storm.
It gives quite a different look to the place.
The final exam for my middle school class was to prepare and serve lunch for all of the middle school teachers.
The kids did a great job making opening day soup, pizza, fruit salad, and a luscious lemon cake. They all earned an A for the final.
We finally ate at KFC.
KFC is very popular in Asia. The chicken was a little boring – none of the eleven secret herbs and spices seem to have made it here. But the famous egg tarts were quite good!
A few weeks ago the parent association at school treated the teachers to a traditional tea ceremony and accompanying traditional Chinese music. It was beautiful and relaxing.
Simo was so taken with the music that he hired the musician for his 60th birthday party. We gathered at the traditional farmhouse restaurant near our apartment. I’m told the name of the restaurant is actually something that translates roughly to “good old neighbor.” That’s an appropriate name. This restaurant feels like a comforting friend. We sat outside on a beautiful evening and listened to lovely music. A fitting birthday for Simo.