I seriously can’t believe how fast the past two weeks of teaching my students English went by! I felt like I just got here but now I’m leaving them to go on the Taiwan tour with my AID group and others. I already have students finding me on Facebook (somehow) and I’m debating if I really want them to see mine LOL. Well, I guess after tomorrow I’ll add them, haha.
This moment is familiar; I think I experience it every day in college. It’s the moment where you take a step back to appreciate all of the great memories you had with the people you worked with and then you take a step forward to realize they might not be there in your future. Sure, there’s Facebook, but these people are so far away. I’m the only person from Chicago whereas everyone else is from California and still in high school (except for my teaching partner who is my age and Canadian). I was on a government-funded program three years ago in Taiwan where I volunteered with the Taiwanese Red Cross with people I never met either and we all were so incredibly close. And of course I’ll hit them up if I’m in their California/New York/New Jersey area (not sure when I’ll visit Texas), but they’ve become more and more distant, even though I’m sure they’d be willing to get close again!
I was hesitant on whether or not I wanted to go with my group to the tour that follows our teaching time. We are given the option of not going, which would mean I could come home early to my aunts and cousins and grandparents and hang out with them for a week longer. I asked the girls in my group, “Would you be offended if I didn’t come on the tour?” And they all quickly replied, “YES MILIE. YOU HAVE TO COME!” Haha, I love feeling needed in a group, and especially missed. Many times they have all gone to the night markets to eat yummy Taiwanese snacks and shop at ridiculously cheap prices for things and I, instead, stayed back in the dorm and did my own thing. It’s not that I didn’t want to go, but I guess there’s no reason for me to go besides stare at the food I can’t eat and look at the things I don’t plan on buying because I didn’t bring enough money (I’m saving it for when I shop with my aunts and cousins). It’s really my eczema on my face and neck that makes me a “party pooper.”
Tomorrow, for our last day, they’re taking us to a really fancy buffet in Taipei (http://dreintaiwan.blogspot.tw/2011/10/eat-together-all-you-can-eat-buffet.html) and the pictures on this person’s blog make us all SOOOOO excited! I cannot wait even though I can’t eat half the things (seafood)…but screw it. I don’t care if I have to turn into a red blotchy monster the next day…I want to enjoy my time in Taiwan and eat sushi! I MISS IT SO MUCH!
Anyway, I probably sound kind of emo in my post but I’m actually having a wonderful time in Taiwan! I guess I am just feeling a little bit homesick since everyone kind of knows someone prior to the trip and I just kind of came to do my own thing. I haven’t contacted my parents much (although after a year I finally added my mom on Facebook so she’s been abusing the Like button like no other) but I’ve kept contact with my brother and his possible new love outlook, haha! The teaching experience I gained was really fun even though it has made me definitely not want to ever want to be a teacher! Making presentations and planning all the activities so the kids learn something and not get bored from it was exhausting. People always tell me that I’d be a great teacher when I help them out with homework, but maybe they mean I’d be a great TUTOR! I love tutoring at the Writing Center and tutoring in other subjects like math or physics etc…but when it comes to teaching a whole class I don’t think I’ve got the classroom management part handled well. I had to discipline two boys yesterday because they were throwing things at each other during nap time. Today they were good though…so that was nice! My students are between the ages of 9-12 by the way. We were required to use only English with the students the whole time and tomorrow we’re spilling the beans that we can actually speak Chinese! They’re going to flip and probably start saying silly words in Taiwanese so we can’t understand them, haha.
As for other updates, I’ve been slowly working my way on the graphics for a book my previous nutrition professor is publishing by the end of this summer. I’m so happy he’s been so patient with my work since there are PLENTY of times where I do not have internet and can’t e-mail him when I want to…and it’s hard to find motivation to do work when the people around you only want to have fun! I definitely planned on applying to so many scholarships prior to coming to Taiwan, but I didn’t apply to a single one…someone please motivate me LOL. I got no grants this year and it’s been really bugging me about how we’re going to pay for tuition since our financial situation did not change at all from the previous years…and they were giving me $15,000 last year and the year before that! Did anyone else get jipped by financial aid? :[ I hate being a financial burden on my family and that’s why I have five jobs but they’re all part-time and wouldn’t be able to support anyone! I guess I’ll have to put up with paying off ridiculous loans later! ><
I heard it’s burnin’ hot in Chicago! It’s always hot and humid in Taiwan, but every time I talk to someone in Chicago it sounds like they’re melting or dying in the heat wave. I hope you guys feel cooler soon. :D