December, 2008

Winding Down

Friday, December 5th, 2008

I only have 19 more days here. I have super mixed feelings about leaving. Like I miss home and my friends, but at the same time I love travelling. I don’t know if there will ever be another opportunity where I can come to Europe/the UK and travel as much as I like. If I wanted to go to Paris I could…even for as little as 2 pounds if I booked it far enough in advanced! It is getting really really cold here…much colder than I am used to so that’s another plus to leaving now.

Home will be cool for like the first couple weeks to see everyone… and then it’s going to be like … so what are we doing this weekend? Wait what we aren’t going to a foreign country this weekend? booorrrriiiinnnng.

I have already started to look at exploration seminars and internships abroad. I doubt it will work out because of money but maybe an exploration seminar. These are like 4 week trips where you get 5 credits and you travel one country with a UW professor and like 30 UW students. I would love to go to Greece or Germany since I didn’t get a chance to go there yet.

Anywho, I leave for Amsterdam at 3am on Thursday. We will be there for 3 days then go to Brussels for one day. It should be great but realllly cold! I haven’t decided what I am going to do my last weekend. For awhile I was thinking of going to Malaga, Spain then Africa with a group… but I only want to go if they are going to go to Africa for half of it. But part of me thinks I may need that weekend to finish up my last essay and pack… we will see.

Traveling around Taiwan

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

country.jpgAt National Chengchi University, classes are held only once a week. This makes it possible to cram all your classes into just a few days, and leave lots of time to travel around the island. Last weekend I left Taipei and went to Kenting, the southern tip of Taiwan.

Getting down there is extremely easy. There is an impressive high-speed train that reaches speeds of 178km/hr and takes about 2 hours. I slept the entire way, so I wasn’t able to see the views on the way down. I heard they were amazing though.

Once in Kenting, it is obvious that there is a different pace to life than the city of Taipei. In Taipei, people are fashionable and walk with a purpose. It’s like an Asian version of New York, but on a much smaller scale. However in Kenting, people really take their time there with everything. It was a nice break from the city life.

scooter.jpgI rented a scooter almost immediately after arriving. It’s true you should need an international license to drive one in Taiwan, but it seems that anything and everything goes in Kenting. I gave the scooter rental shop my student id from NCCU, and I was on my way.

The town is made up of one main street and many beautiful beaches. At the beach with the best waves, surfing lessons were being offered. I signed up, and found out it is much harder than I had imagined. seafood.jpgAfter a few hours of trying to stand up I enjoyed my time stretched out on the beach.

For the most part, I spent my time in Kenting riding around the area on my scooter and eating lots of seafood. It was a vacation that was hard to leave. If a future career in finance doesn’t pan out, you might find me as a beach bum in southern Taiwan.