I live in the city

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For the last two years, I have been living in the city. If you’re wondering why I’m just now coming around to thinking about this, I have an answer, thanks to one of my brilliant communication professors back in college: “fish out of the water.” For the last two years, I’ve been the fish and the city of Taipei has been the water. And this last summer, I feel like I’ve finally stepped out of it. (The fish simply doesn’t notice anything is different until he’s out of the water – obviously.The philosophy’s simple enough.) But unlike the fish, I can breathe!
Until moving here to Taipei in July of 2009, I had never lived in the city. Navigating the mazes of public transportation was never a part of daily life. I grew up in a residential neighborhood full of kids on bikes and skateboards and their own two feet. We walked places, but it was always more convenient to drive. And then I went to college in the country, surrounded by acres of trees and fields and lakes, a 10-15 minute drive from the nearest shopping center. 
I’d always been a romantic city mouse. By that, I mean I traveled to different cities in the States all the time and loved it. Always dreaming/planning on living in the Big City. Always made the statement, “I love the city.” I stayed in hostels and guest houses in Boston, Chicago, D.C,. Explored streets with the help of my GPS and made sure I experienced all the glory of the city’s Subway/Metro Rail system. 
Then I moved to Taipei, Taiwan. Public transportation and being a pedestrian has been a part of my daily routine ever since. 

Over the course of the last two years, I traveled to other parts of Asia, namely the Philippines and Korea. And every time I returned to Taiwan, it was right back to the bustling busy rhythm of the city.

This last summer, I stayed in Taiwan teaching summer courses for the cram school at which I work. And I even took a couple of trips out of Taipei.

I began the summer with a personal weekend down to a beach town called Dulan. Then in the middle of August, I planned a group trip with some friends to an Island County called Penghu off of Taiwan’s west coast. Then, the day after the last day of summer school, I went on an all-day hiking trip in Jiufen, one of my favorite places on the northern coast of the island.

The truth is, I live on a beautiful island. I was reminded of this as my body fought against the force of the ocean waves in Dulan, as my eyes were overtaken by the vast and blue skies of Penghu, as the path in front of me was cut off by lizards and butterflies and clouds in Jiufen.

As I enter another year of life in city, I definitely plan on escaping to the countryside more often. It truly is good for the soul.

Dulan
Penghu
Jiufen      

 

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2 thoughts on “I live in the city

  1. it's so fun to see your life across the globe!I am living in the middle of nowhere and, for the most part, love it! I do miss the conveniences of city life. I miss being closer to family and friends. But I love the beauty and peacefulness of the country.

  2. friend, i could not be happier for you.i really do feel like part of me goes with you, even if the reality of that is somewhat impractical. i think of you often.love as always.

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