Taiwan 2016


January 11, 2016

Today is January 11th, exactly seven days after I commenced school in Taipei. Most of you are probably thinking that i’m having to adjust to  school in Asia, but honestly my school is like an embassy of the United States in Taiwan. Everything is in English even the caution sticker on the back of the basketball backboard in our enormous gym. I like to say that it is an Oasis of English in a sea of Mandarin. So, back to describing my school.

Taipei American School (TAS) is a school located in Tianmu, a neighborhood in Taipei which is often called the melting pot of cultures among an all Chinese environment. TAS consists of two thousand dual nationalistic students who come from every which corner of the world. I even met a friend who used to live in Temuco, Chile, a city encircled by the Andes mountains one of side and the Pacific Ocean on the other. So as I was saying, almost everyone is from an international background. This gives me many opportunities to consult with kids who all have different cultures. This is just fascinating to me. Most of my teachers are american as all of our curriculum is based on the state of California’s.

Okay, enough about academics, its time for athletics. TAS have 3 large gyms as well as one large artificial turf soccer field. Rugby can also be played there. We are part of a conference that is called IASAS. It is basically all of the international schools in north-east and south-east Asia competing against each other. The other day I saw that we had just played Hong Kong International School (HKIS). This also lets us interact with different cultures.



First day of School!!!!!


My school’s soccer field


Ridding the bus to school!


January 7, 2016


January 7, our first day in Taiwan. Because of jet lag, my parents and I are up and running at 4 in the morning. We look out the window and notice a skyline full of tall looking buildings, all sitting there like trees in a forest. We then start doing some research for the day ahead. Maybe a museum. Maybe a little snack before starting our day. After finding some nice little activities, we head out towards the northern part of Taipei. We visit my school, a large campus encircled by towering apartment buildings, and also go to a Japanese department store called Muji. Then we stop at a nearby 7/11 to get an onigiri, rice stuffed with chicken and then enveloped in seaweed. By then it was already 4 ocklock and we retired home to sleep, again because of jetlag

Taipei Skyline from Elephant Mountain
Elephant Mountain offers a spectacular view of Taipei city. Getting to the best photography point is about a 20 to 30 minute climb of 1000ft or so up an enormous number of somewhat uneven steps. In the summer heat, this isn’t a lot of fun but the resulting view is definitely worth the discomfort of getting up there.