Taiwanese hospitality is a living process on how to always take the best of you. At first when I arrived to Taiwan I had no expectations whatsoever about anything. It was simply a blank paper for an upcoming adventure in this chapter of my life. Despite the language, everything seemed to be so strange and odd to me. I felt pretty much as an alien who just landed in a different planet (if that’s what is like going to another planet!), couple of weeks later for my tranquility I was officially an alien.  Nevertheless, in spite of my great sense of adaptation to different environments residing in Taiwan is extremely easier thanks to locals’ hospitality. And I say locals because even other foreigners have being touched so much by the culture that somehow have ended up residing in the island for years, blending their native behavior with the local one.  

“It’s the same everywhere” people say, and it’s true! However, Taiwan has something different, politeness here is even more evident than the one I have found so far in other countries –except Japan, I must say!

Being a foreigner is sometimes hard, even more when you don’t speak the language. I remember that during my very first day in the country I went to look up for a bookstore near by the area and of course I got lost. I think I must have had one of my regular emoticon-face expressions that this man approached me and said what I believe now it was a “can I help you?” At first I was skeptical about his true intentions (hey, I was new in town!), but then I realized he was just offering some help, so between the gestures and unknown words I finally found the bookstore. That was the moment when I started to use signs while speaking and the tactic became my best allied to communicate in town. Once I achieved a broken Mandarin level I finally was able to leave behind the mime-mode and embrace the google translator instead. During the following months I couldn’t stop been so impressed on those simple details perhaps not everyone notice, such as when people say “thank you” to the bus driver or when someone might just stop for few minutes in the street to ensure that the taxi driver will take you exactly where you want to go, even more when you go to a restaurant and the owners are preparing their own lunch and offer you some so you can taste something different and traditional.

 

Experiencing something is always different for each person, to me is mostly about positive attitude, without prejudices and just to give an opportunity to people. Always trying not to take it personal even if it’s hard, at the end might be something “cultural” to learn from – or not!. The truth is that to me Taiwanese hospitality is not only found when great hosts opens the door of their house for dinner, still on my personal opinion the authentic Taiwanese hospitality relies on those spontaneous moments you experience while going outdoors, enter to a shop or get lost on the street.  Learn from those simple, yet valuable behaviors, is incredibly touching that makes you take the best from you.