Showing posts from June, 2007


Hello to those who read this... I've been really busy lately and lots of weird stuff is happening.
I went to Taipei for a couple of days and now I'm home but going back on Wednesday for most of July. I'll be doing 3 weeks of camps. I'm just slowly finding out information about the camps, so I'll be madly getting ready for those at the end of next week.
I just came back from Taipei and I'm heading to Yuli tonight because of an unexpected emergency. I'm ok, but some people I know aren't so please pray for my friends in Yuli.
ALSO sometime between thursday and friday my hotmail account and msn were messed up. I'm not sure what happened, but I can't get into either, it's like someone changed the password on me. I've been thinking of switching completely to gmail for awhile, but I didn't think i'd be doing it without all my contacts!!! So anyways, if you need to reach me, please email at my account. The name is xialudi. I have…


Well now that I have a new visa that lets me stay in this country for another year, I'm going to once again attempt to get my drivers' license. Let's see what kind of strange rule they'll come up with this time (people with red hair can't drive scooters in Taiwan?). Maybe you'll recall the difficulties I had last year with my ARC being short a couple of weeks, so they refused to let me take the test. Well about a month after that I broke my leg, so I ended up not pursuing it further, but this time, I HOPE I can get it. And with questions like the above on the test, well I don't know if it makes it easier or more difficult...sometimes the answers are quite obvious. Others, it's like well I have no idea what the question is actually asking! Don't know who translated the questions..anyways.

I tend to put things off if I'm unsure about them. Last week the fluorescent light above my bed burned out, but I wasn't sure where to get a new one. So I li…

My Bible Study

Last Wednesday was the class party for my English bible study. It's been a great year with my students and it was a fun celebration. Unlike my class at the other church, the students have been really consistent in this class, so I've gotten to know them pretty well.

To celebrate, we had a potluck dinner. We ate dumplings, pineapple shrimp, potato salad, chicken and lots of fruit including mangoes and lychees which are in season right now. I made a homemade salsa which was a HUGE hit. Quite simple too, just cut up an onion, a bunch of cilantro, some garlic and about 4 tomatoes, add a little lemon juice and cumin powder and some salt. Mix and let it sit in the fridge for about an hour. Really simple and tasty!!

After we ate, we played a game and then I did a cookie demonstration! Since this is a smaller class (my biggest class is 48!) I can make cookies for then on occasion without spending a LOT of time (4 classes of 48 - almost 200 students in a day! that's a lot of cookies…

Go west, young (wo)man

Dragon Boat Festival fell on a Tuesday this year, giving many people a four day weekend. I decided to go explore a little more of western Taiwan, since I've been on the east for the majority of my time here. I passed through briefly during my first Chinese New Year in 2005.

I spent most of the weekend in Chang-hua, with some time in Taizhong as well.
Chang-hua has a really beautiful agricultural area where there are tons of flowers growing and being sold. It also has a giant Buddha statue at the top of a mountain.
Closer to the coast is a small town called Lugang with an old street. There's lots of fresh seafood for sale there as well as a lot of local crafts. I didn't buy anything this time, but visited a couple of temples and a really narrow street called "breast touch alley" Taizhong has a big night market which was suffocatingly crowded when we visited it. Here's one picture of the crowd we had to push through to get out!

An interesting observation about Tai…

Congratulations Grads!

Well, I don' t think I know anyone in Canada who is actually graduating this year. But today I attended the graduation ceremony for some of my students from last year at the girls' high school. It was very Taiwanese, including the typical random music spliced together, cross-dressing, and skanky dancing.
Now in Canada, a graduation ceremony more or less should include caps and gowns, everyone walking across the stage to receive their diplomas, and some speeches.
Today was the first High School graduation I've been to in Taiwan. The ceremony I attended today was more like an awards/variety show! I guess 500+ cheering/screaming girls will change the atmosphere of any event. There was lots of singing, dances, skits, and videos. The students simply wore their school uniforms with just little hats or pins that they made as a class (including flowers, crowns and badges with their class numbers). Their theme was "Play Jazz" and they sang songs from Chicago and Phantom of…

The Roach Monster of 5-4 (that's where I live)

We are not alone.
Our unsuspecting heroine flings back the screen to the kitchen on her way to make some iced tea. She hears a soft scuttle and her eyes focus on the monstrosity just before it dashes into the dark kitchen cupboard from whence it came. She utters a bloodcurdling shriek and reaches for the nearest weapon. In this case, a can of RAID. She ponders for a minute about the adverse effects of spraying the food in her pantry with a toxic substance, but by this time it is already too late. The thing is gone. She gives a warning spray around the edges of the closed door, though perhaps it is a fruitless precaution....

That's right, folks, there's a cockroach in my kitchen. Actually this isn't the first time I've seen it. I meant to post earlier about the amazing kamikaze cockroach. In our last encounter, I turned the gas burner on to boil the kettle and it jumped out from among the flames, decided in an instant that preferred the environment below the burner and le…

All I can think about

As I ride my bike through the torrential rain that the spring rainy season brings is this song:

Quite a blast from the past! Incidentally, this Jars of Clay CD was the first Christian CD I ever bought, and almost wore it out in the next year since I listened to it so much. DC Talk's Jesus Freak, was of course the second. Good times!

Back to the rain. Well on Friday it was pouring, much like every other day this week, but of course, I dutifully had to go to class. So I put on my track pants and rain coat that goes to my knees and hopped on my else was I supposed to get across town? Actually until then I'd been sort of a chicken about riding in the rain. But you gotta do what you gotta do. Anyways, the way back was the worst! You know when you're pedaling and your foot is in the lowest position? Well at that position my feet would actually be submerged in water! It almost felt like that scene from The Day After Tomorrow where water starts coming UP from the gutters.…

Doctor's Report

I did go see the doctor today and got an x-ray. The report was pretty good. The spot where the screw was removed has almost completely filled in. And the original break site has filled in faintly, but isn't solid yet, with just a small gap still. The doctor said its pretty much on schedule, and that I should be able to get the plate removed in the fall (around a year after the break) and to come back in three months. Swelling and pain is normal. So i guess that's just something I have to live with for awhile yet.
That's all for now!

comings and goings

OK guys, I have not been blogging lately....perhaps because I've been spending too much time on Facebook.... which if you don't have, I'd highly recommend!
In the last week or so I've....
....taught lots of classes, though some were cancelled because of graduation trips
....received a gift from one of my classes (brought back from their graduation trip), and was really touched that they thought of me!
....went to a beautiful wedding that combined western and Taiwanese traditions
....updated my template for summer! thanks a-hsiang for the help
....used my air conditioner more than I should have
....gotten drenched in the spring rains on the way home from class
....not been to the Dr. I've been kinda putting it off but i'm going tomorrow, and if I don't, you can yell at me ok!
....started planning some end of class parties the first one being next wednesday where i've promised to make homemade salsa AND do a cookie baking demonstration
....gotten approved on a new …

Today's Headlines

I read the newspaper maybe once a week. It's a good activity for a long train ride or an hour at Starbucks. I came across two noteworthy news stories yesterday... mostly noteworthy because of how ridiculous they are:

Roof collapses, kills 16
At first glance not an amusing event. But this happened last week in China. The roof of a house collapsed killing and injuring people attending a banquet. The owner of the house was having a banquet for his friends and neighbors as a thank you for helping him build his new house. I guess they didn't do a very good job....

Malaysian Court rejects convert's appeal
A Malaysian woman was refused her request to change her official religion on her national ID from Islam to Christianity. Officials were quoted as saying: "She cannot simply at her own whims enter or leave her religion. There are rules." I don't see how anyone but you yourself may choose your own belief system...