Witness my ode to the homeland. A greasy food haven, resplendent with rich aromas and friendly folks. A place where locals move with swagger and you can pay $2 for 2 breakfast sandwiches, a green onion pancake, and a soy milk.
Speaking in Taiwanese and Mandarin felt so good. This was my first trip back where I wasn’t visiting family (my mom and brother are both in California right now) so I could fully practice without someone interceding on my behalf. It was the first time I haven’t followed my family around and was able to traverse the city asking locals for directions and chatting up store owners. (Though my haggling skills need a lot of work.) My mum lives in Tainan, in the southwest of the island so I actually have little familiarity with the capital city, making this trip a delightful and reassuring forecast of good things to come.
Now is a good time to share that I was accepted to a program in Mandarin Chinese at National Taiwan University and will move to Taipei at the end of December when my work contract in Tokyo ends! I’ll probably get a part-time job as well so we shall see what pans out. I don’t feel that I’ll ever be ready to leave a place I have grown to love so much but I am looking forward to where the next step will take me.
feat. Taipei 101, Elephant Mountain (aka Xiangshan 象山), Jiufen Old Street, Yong Kang Street, Raohe Night Market, Shilin Night Market, and Din Tai Fung
xo your friend alice
Location: Taipei, Taiwan