How many times we heard: “But girls, why did you choose Taiwan?!”. Now it’s time to unveil the mystery once and for all!
Let’s start with the geolocation of Taiwan: this little island is situated about 160 km far from the east coast of China; long time ago, it was called Formosa Island (beautiful island). Although its surface of 35.883 km², the population of Taiwan is about 23,5 million of inhabitants. The peculiarity of this nation lies in its age: in fact, Taiwan is only 107 years old (that’s the reason why the date is written in this way: 107/mm/dd)! This detail is very important for taiwanese people because it establishes a detachment, at least governmental, from China.
By asking friends and acquaintances, we noticed that Taiwan is a real mysterious land for many people. Some people don’t know which is the national language, others don’t know which kind of food they can find, others again don’t even know where this little island is located. For the truth, we ourselves were in these groups of people!
Let’s be clear, travelling is sometimes a word of mouth: this place is amazing! you have to go there! I recommend you to taste this! be careful to that rule. But it may happen that some places in the world are almost unknonw and we chose exactly one of them.
Why did we choose the Formosa Island?
Everything started with the idea of Chiara to take part to the Erasmus Overseas program (i.e. not in Europe but in the whole world). Her choiches were: South Korea, Taiwan or Canada. After a careful assessment of the exams she could do and after understanding the rules in the dorms, she chose Taiwan.
About Giulia, instead, the situation is a bit more complicated. In June, the two halves of this blog were in Germany during the Erasmus period of Chiara at the University of Trier. The fate wanted (was really the fate?) that there was a taiwanese professor teaching exactly in that university at that moment. After understandig that Mr. C. worked in a institute for development and research in Taiwan, Giulia started to send e-mail hoping to have the possibility to do an internship in that taiwanese institute.
So here we are in Taiwan, for a month now!
Are you curious to know what we think about Taiwan so far, right? Let’s try to sum up in a few passages this first four taiwanese weeks:
- Kindness is a common routine, sometimes it’s even too much.
- Life is very cheap but shopping at the supermarket is more expensive than eating at the restaurant!
- Eating is a sort of compulsive mania; they say that they do the last meal at 7:30 pm but we see them in the night markets looking for sweets, bubble tea and snacks!
- Taiwanese country is amazing: natural parks, coastal areas, big cities, rural areas, mountains…it’s a continuous surprise!
- Stinky tofu makes you wish not to have the nose: it stinks, it stinks so bad.
- Chinese language was elected by us as an impossible language. Each chinese word has 5 different sounds: you could say bird thinking to say hello.
- Taiwan is basically a very safe place.
We are discovering a lot of interesting things and we would like to share everything with you. There is a lot to write about: habits, food, traditions, architecture, problems and uniquenesses!