I wouldn’t called Cultural Shock, I think a closer description would be “Starting from Cero”. Life is about that, it gives you new challenges every day, awaiting for your response. It depends on mainly how ready we are, how independent we are, but more important, What are we willing to see and experience. I guess that coming to Taiwan represented a highly-recommended new journey for me, for everyone. Besides taking an IMBA Master degree we are racing from cero. I am realistic, no family, no friends, but thanks god, no enemies. In two years I need to do what babies have to do, Start and Adapt. Nobody said it was going to be easy. In my case, even being Asian, I christened Taiwan as a new challenge to discover.

Place is different, people approach is different, food is different. In the IMBA daily basis there is a lot to study and to learn. The main ingredient of the IMBA in Taiwan is the cultural exchange. The Student lounge in our College of Commerce is a conjoint of people who are doing the same thing as I do. They are starting from cero. Everyone has different backgrounds, that differs from Taiwanese. When I first came to Taiwan, I was ready to depict the Taipei 101, state of the art architect masterpiece. Visiting 101 was just a fancy-idea, but I wanted to discover Taipei as a city. As a place where I will stay for almost two years. I had to see things to will fit me, and self-think a lot. Things are not different now. They are the same. I do have challenges every day, my Chinese is still in medium-stage; but regardless the fact of Taiwanese people thinking I’m local and talking to me in Taiwanese, is a different-funny-and challenging story for me.

I think I have repeated it several times, the only thing I don’t like is the stinky tofu. That tofu is harrowingly stinky. But I must say, that I love “dou jian”, which is soy milk. In the past few days, I’ve been dreaming about going to DingTaiFun which is a Taiwanese base restaurant. Despite that is not the most luxurious place, this has food to spoil your stomach. It’s a place where the best dumplings, mooncakes, noddles, and tw-snacks are served. I would like to recall something funny that happened to my and other foreigners a few days ago. We were finishing to discuss some project with other local Taiwanese classmates, and we agreed we should have some dinner after the semester ends. They asked us, what kind of food, We of course, left it open to their recommendation since they live here.

The moment they offered Italian food, my friends and myself we were surprised. As we reply the reasons why we didn’t want Italian food. Back home we can have the best Italian food, Chinese has other sort of luck. I personally told them that maybe could be thai, or Singaporean. Because in the big cities, we are able to get some Japanese or Korean. But other countries are lacking. So, we ended up explaining that we wanted to eat local, some asian-food. Having these local classmates as I called “local buddies” easies our journey. It adds new ingredients for people to feel like home.

That charming that Taiwanese people have to treat people (if they speak English is way better), they are willing to help anytime. If they help or refuse to, its because maybe their English is not good, or your approach wasn’t appropriate. Taiwan has galloped regardless their political and instability issues, to home thousands of foreigners, who came for certain reasons, in that sense, we are similar. But what makes it different, is how we react to challenges called “starting from cero”. Some people do it, others fail.


David Koo Chong NG got enrolled in IMBA at National Chengchi University in 2005