Yikes, long time no blog.
People have been asking what I’ve been up to lately, since I’ve been absent from the blogosphere. I don’t have a very exciting answer to that question, which I guess means that I’ve been settling into a routine here. I feel as though I have become more comfortable living in Taiwan. More like it’s my home, not just some foreign place I’m visiting for a while. Hooray!
I still don’t speak any sort of useful Chinese. Aside from a (very) few basic words, phrases, and food orders, I continue to rely on pointing and gesturing. Now, if you’re like Carey Van den Busch and know that I’m an excellent “handsy-talker”, you may think that this talent is serving me well. No. I MUST learn Chinese soon. I went this weekend to sign up for free weekly lessons at the public library, but the class was full. Lucky for me, my Teaching Assistant wants to do a language exchange. She’ll teach me Chinese, and I’ll help her improve her English. I’m VERY excited about this. At some point, beef noodles (the only thing I know how to order) are going to get old.....
Speaking of food, I have fully embraced the starchy, starchy diet of the Taiwanese. This is a common conversation in my life:
Me: “I’m hungry. Let’s get something to eat.”
Others: “What would you like to eat? Rice? Noodles?”
Me: “How about something with vegetables?”
Others: “Oh, ok. How about vegetable noodles? Or vegetables with rice?”
Salad isn’t really an option. Oh, unless you like salad covered in mayonnaise “dressing.” It’s ok, though. I rinse it all down with about 12 cups of tea per day. I haven’t had a Diet Coke since I bought one at Chicago O’Hare. I never see Diet Coke in the stores or at restaurants. Coke Zero is available, but we all know that’s not the same. But the tea! So many varieties! Jasmine tea, Oolong tea, green tea, black tea, lemon tea, milk tea, yogurt tea..... I’m drinking my way through the 7-Eleven refrigerator section. ALMOST as fun as drinking my way through the tap beers at Bar Louie. :)
The one part of my life here that is starting to bother me is my sleeping schedule. Three days a week I have to be at work by 1:30pm. The other two days I don’t have to clock in until 4pm! This may sound wonderful, but it is wreaking havoc on my sanity. I knew that my schedule would be different when I moved here, but I imagined myself spending my mornings being productive, going to the gym, maybe doing some sight-seeing. No. It is all I can do to drag my bones out of bed at 11am. What am I, 15 again? What adult with a real-life job sleeps until almost noon on a regular basis??? I guess one who works second-shift. Anyways, everyday I tell myself I will wake up at 9am. I even set my alarm. I hit the snooze bar until 9:30 or 10 before resigning to the fact that I will absolutely NOT get up. I turn the alarm off and roll over back to sleep. Then at night, I tell myself my bedtime is midnight, and it’s lights out! The couple times I have actually followed my own rule, I have tossed and turned until 2am or later. This, in turn, makes getting up with the 9am alarm impossible, and so the cycle continues. So. Much. Sleeping.
Uh, now you all know the REAL reason I haven’t blogged in two weeks.....