It’s August 28, 2013, and I find myself inexplicably living in Taiwan. I recall that last time I lived in Asia, I wanted out; somehow, I managed to end up back here.
Some of the reasons why I chose Taiwan are valid, some are less. First, I started to miss Thailand a lot over the summer, and I was craving a visit. I know that last time I left, it was sort of abrupt and I didn’t get to visit a lot of the places that I had planned on visiting here. But a visit was really all I wanted; I don’t know how that turned into a teaching commitment! Secondly, the pay is quite high here relative to the cost of living. Another thing was that I wanted somewhere warmer than Chicago, so that the winters wouldn’t be so brutal. So yup… here I am!
I booked this ticket 2 weeks before I actually flew out, so it was a big shock for me and the people I’m close to. I had been thinking about doing something like this for a while, but the leap was hard. Although my time in Chicago was tough, I grew a lot closer to my family. And I met someone there who I really grew to care about. It was an extremely difficult decision to deny the comfort and support and face the world alone, with no Chinese speaking ability, less than $1000 in the bank, and no job or house prospects in front of me. However, I felt it was the right decision because, for better or worse, living abroad is the lifestyle that makes me feel most alive, and I know that now’s not the time settle into anything less than that.
A lot of risks that I’ve taken lately have not panned out, but sometimes things just go your way. I arrived on Friday at 1 am (after a 26 hour layover in Hong Kong due to a typhoon in Taipei… good omens). After spending the (second) night in the airport, I dropped my stuff off and immediately went into a job interview. I was hired! The next day I found a ridiculously cheap apartment, and on Sunday I moved in. Settled into my new home within 3 days! Now I plan to relax and discover what this city has to offer.