When I was a child, I dreamed that one day I would study abroad.  Fortunately, my dream came true. Four months ago, I moved to Taiwan – (Ilha Formosa) is a beautiful island country in East Asia to pursue my doctoral degree.  I could still recall many moments when I was struggling for certainty, confidence, and competence as well as questing for my identity.

My experience was not unique to many Taiwanese friends.  For in my educational advancement, Taiwanese friends helped me to find ways to reduce uncertainty in order to make a smooth transition to the new Taiwanese environment.  For instance, I recalled one incident,“Moving far away from my homeland to a new country, without family and friends being around, to face the challenge of loneliness and establishing a new friendship network.  When coming to a foreign country most people tend to look for their countrymen first for socialization (I realized after few days I don’t have any countrymen) but I got love and confidence to survive in this new globe (Taiwan) after interacting with friends specially, Taiwanese friends.  Generally, I’ll forget my loneliness if I see Taiwanese innocent face saying the word 謝謝”.

I learned how to say peaceful answer to some unknown person by showing respect from whole heart, which was really attracted my attention on Taiwanese friends.  It takes time for people from different countries to develop friendships. Many my foreign student friends told “Taiwanese are shy people"; however, I personally experienced they are not shy but I identified English as their biggest obstacle to interact. I’m really lucky person to have an English-speaking Taiwanese friends and they were always ready to help. In fact, I’ll always speak fast in English (my friends always comment on me – ‘Kandi’ speak slow) but I discovered new version of English to make good meaningful conversation with my Taiwanese friends: Chinglish (Chinese English – Long time no see).  My Chinglish has removed all barriers for my Taiwanese friends and created meaningful friendship with them. I always try to enjoy eating food with them to recall my home dining hall.

I heard from my childhood friend about Taiwanese friendship, if two persons are best friends, they are very loyal to and can do anything for each other. Now, I’m experiencing their value for friendship. It was really god gift to have Taiwanese friends.

On the other hand, god is too bad, he has given only one Taiwanese roommate. “I felt it is was more difficult to communicate with him but Chinglish was helped me to interact with him. He is good enough to help and I think I never heard the word no from him, if we ask any help. I remembered one of the incident with him,“I do not have personal PC and I decided to ask him for a couple of minutes but my inner heart saying not to ask still I conveyed my message to him. Consequently, his answer was Okay you can use and told “next time if you want to use, don’t need to ask”. it seemed that we knew each other well”.

As I experienced from other Taiwanese friends at International College at moon night (11:40 pm), we were facing problem to transfer money. no one came forward to help us but after some time, one fellow came and asked How can I help you? We were surprised and happy. He really solved our problem and engaged with us for a couple of minutes. He interacted more after knowing I’m from India (of course!! He was from IT academic background). It was also one memorable movement to learn how to interact with others.

World is open new window to explore for different cultures. Who knows? God may give better opportunities to interact with my Taiwanese friends in future. 

How we can enjoy this beautiful country culture and people’s love and kindness permanently??

I recalled my mother words……………………

 “Son, look for the weather where you will get peace and look for the daughter-in-law who cares on you”.

I hope, for my mom question, I may get answers in this vibrant Taiwanese environment.

 

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