Six weeks and counting. I think I am looking forward to the end of the semester more than my students, Especially since I have asked a few classes if anyone had plans for the summer break and about 50% of the responses have been “cram school”. The word “Vacation” must have been incorrectly translated somewhere down the line.
At work I am trying to prepare for the end of the semester; oral examinations, correcting papers, scheduling so I can get all the lessons in by finals time. But I spend most of my break time preparing for my summer vacation rather than classes, (which is fine because technically I don’t get paid for time I’m here and not teaching).
This summer I will be heading to Japan for the month of July and then home to Rochester New York for August.
As much as I am looking forward to Japan, I am looking forward even more to going home. Really spending some time at home for the first time in two years. I’ve been thinking about some things that I miss that I don’t have in my life in Taiwan. So I decided to make a list of things I miss and am looking forward to.
- The people.An obvious number one. I can’t wait to get back to my friends and family, some I haven’t seen in two years or more.
- Fresh air.I love Taiwan and I love its’ nature. But I live in the city. Every morning I look out my window to check, if I can see Dakeng (the “mountains” surrounding Taichung) then the air is good. If I can’t… it’s pollution. This morning I saw them for the first time all week.
- Open spaces.Here everywhere you look there is something impeding your view. During the week it is ugly city buildings (Taichung is not a pretty city) and on the weekends I usually relieve my eyes with a little green in the mountains. But there is never nothing, no flat spaces. My eyes need a break.
- Grass.I want to lay in a field of grass, soft grass,. One part of nature that Taiwan actually does not have.
- Not being stared at.
- Not being talked to like a mentally challenged adult.
- Road rules.People actually stopping at red lights. Not having to dodge trucks and buses and scooters and old people in the road. Riding my bike in the middle of the road without the fear of being hit by anything. Driving down an empty road with bad country music on the radio.
- Late sunset.The sun sets around 6pm here even when the weather gets hot and summer draws near. I miss long summer days, when the sun doesn’t set until 9 or 10.
- Drinking beers around a bonfire.Actually having good beer choices, but probably just end up drinking Genny anyways.