Life at the beginning of my study out here in Taiwan was like living in another planet with unfamiliar environment, people and culture altogether. I was beginning to ask myself what I was doing out here with just a very boring life. However, life began to change when I started to make friends around me.
The first kind of friendship I experienced and still have is from my colleagues. Anytime I have myself around them. I feel just very happy whenever we meet because during that period, we talk about things that relate to our academic work, things happening around us, our experiences each day and so many other things that are not just possible to include under such a small space. Anyway, this is just to say that I like the kind of friendship built between me and my colleagues despite the fact that we all come from different countries with different cultures
The other friendship I have here in Taiwan is in my department (Department of Agricultural Economics) out here at National Taiwan University. First of all, the chairman of the department who is like a father to us, offering us love and advice whenever we meet him. That I believe have drawn us all closer to him. I personally feel very happy and excited whenever he is around me because he does not reserve any good advice and comment that a good father gives to his children. The warmth and approach given to us from him gives me the courage to approach to him whenever I need help. This was greatly manifested when I needed assistance to go back home at the end of the first semester during my first year in NTU. Through his understanding and consideration, funds were raised both from the department and other departments of the university to assist me buy my air ticket to go back home to give birth to my second baby. This is not to say that other members of the department were not helpful as I surely know that most of the assistance I got from my department came through coordinated actions and decisions from all the staff of the department all of whom is very much grateful of.
Also, all the lecturers out here in my department are so nice and accommodating that the unusual habit of fearing professors in most universities from the part of the world I come from just disappeared after a few weeks of study in NTU. The lecturers are so considerate to our needs and weaknesses that they go extra miles to provide assistance especially with our academic work. All I can say about the people in my department is that they were beginning to ‘spoil’ us like babies with so many things to make us happy. Anyway, that is just to say that it is possible to find love and care from people anywhere even from people you where not expecting. I cannot also forget about someone so special in my department whose friendship I can never forget for the rest of my life, and in so doing decide to name my little daughter after her so that anytime I call my daughter’s name I recall this special person in my life and all the good things she has done for me especially during my first semester at NTU.
Also, I cannot forget about my countrymen and women most of whom I found so nice and helpful to me out here in Taiwan. Despite the fact that I knew most of them only when we met here in Taiwan, they make me feel at home by their care, love and assistance. Words cannot express how grateful I am towards anything they have done for me, most especially the love and warmth I receive from them. I pray and wish that this friendship that has been built between us will continue after we all go back home to our beloved country.
Last but not the least I will be selfish to end this piece of paper without mentioning my sponsor body, TaiwanICDF that gave me the opportunity to come here to Taiwan to study. TaiwanICDF has brought one of my dreams come true by giving me the scholarship to pursue a postgraduate course which I have always longed for after the completion of my undergraduate course. I found TaiwanICDF as my friend because since Taiwan found friendship with my country, Gambia and provides human capital assistance of whom am part of, then that is another kind of friendship I found in Taiwan and will continue to remember for the rest of my life.  
NTU_Mary.doc3.9 MB