Monday, September 29, 2008

Typhoon Break!!

So...typhoon no 3 decides to hit taiwan during a weekend AGAIN. At least it hit on sunday so we still had saturday to roam around. And it was a super typhoon so it gave us an extra long weekend because there's no school or work today! LoL.

So yesterday when it was super bad we decided to go out for dinner because we already had 泡麵 for lunch and didn't want to get it for dinner too. We went with the typhoon eye was somewhere around taipei so it wasn't as windy and rainy. It was quite fun...kind of felt like we were in a wading pool the whole time. Haha. Too bad I didn't bring my camera with me...would've been some nice pics.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Week's Recap

So I haven't updated in like a week with the main reason being that I'm lazy. I would open a new entry but never actually write in it. And I figured I should finally write before I forget everything.

So what's been done this week?

I've gone to three different club meetings/info sessions. The quote of the day for clubs...I went to a song writers club with my friend Dan who's white. First of all, we get there half an hour late and embarrass ourselves while they stare at us as we walk into the room. And then we introduce ourselves with Dan going first and saying he's an exchange student from America. Then I introduce myself and say the same thing. And then the club president goes..."可是....妳看起來像東方人..." -_____-|| Well no DUH dude. I am Asian! Just from America! LoL. So yea. That was interesting. Don't know which clubs I will end up actually joining. But everyone was really nice and it's kinda weird when everyone goes OOOOOOO when you introduce yourself as an exchange student. Haha.

So schedule has finally been set. I'm not very happy about it because I'm still taking three ICLP courses. I didn't come to NTU to take Chinese, even my parents didn't want me doing that. But I can't get out of it. So I'm just taking one NTU course in addition to the ICLP courses. It's called Special Topic in Foreign Language Teaching. Basically about how to teaching English. It's taught in English and I'm actually liking this class out of the three classes I that audited last week. So I chose to keep it.

Hm what else has happened. Oh bother...can't remember. Went to shilin nightmarket again last night and bought some shoes. And today we went to 101 area for the 3C convention. I bought a webcam! So now I can webcam with people! And later tonight heading to a club with friends to register to vote. LoL. A club that has a register to vote party. Amazing.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

A Dream Come True

This makes studying in Taiwan completely worth it. <3

Saturday, September 20, 2008

First Week Over!

So the first week of class is FINALLY over. I can't believe it's only been a week. It feels like a month. @@ It's probably because in addition to going to class everyday, I've also been going out with friends almost everyday. Quite tiring I must say. But having fun is part of studying abroad is it no? ^^

This week my friends and I traveled to 台北車站 to eat dinner and buy school supplies. We also went to 西門町 to watch this Taiwanese movie called 海角七號 which was really funny. Then we walked around and ate some street food. Good stuff yo~ Got me some yummy peanut powder mochi stuff. Delish~We also went to the Prince Apartments welcome party and I saw 韋禮安!!! He's a NTU student who won this singing competition that was broadcast on tv like a year ago. He's like a mini celebrity because he's appeared in some music videos and have written song lyrics for some famous singers. His prize from the competition was supposed to be a singing contract but he denied it because he wanted to focus on his studies. Anyways...he performed some of the songs he wrote at the party and they were really great. He has a great voice and speaks really good English. Got his autograph and took a picture with him. Hehe. Yay. ^^
And today we all went to 貓空, this place up in the mountains with tons of tea places for people to drink tea and look at night scenery and just have fun. We took the gondola up and down. It was pretty fun. The beef noodle soup I had up there was pretty darn delicious too.

Tomorrow is the leehom concert. Can you say excited? I so am. And we're going KTV right before the concert too. Woo for tmrw!

On a completely different note, my class schedule is currently a big fat mess. There are 3 NTU courses that I want to take but if I were to do that, I'd be taking 6 hours of class for 3 days. Definitely not fun so I want to drop one of the Chinese courses that I'm currently taking right now. But the program won't let me drop it so now it's a whole bunch of emailing EAP and talking to the EAP liaison professor here to see what can be done. But yea. When this whole mess gets settled this coming week I'll talk about the NTU classes that I'm taking.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Typhoon + Class

So this past weekend was 中秋節 [Moon Festival]. Unfortunately, a typhoon decided to come to Taiwan and ruin it for everyone. LoL. I went to my grandmother's and we stayed home all weekend. It poured like crazy the whole Saturday so that was spent watching tv [which would sometimes lose signal for a couple of minutes] and playing my DS. Then I braved the rain on Sunday to head back to the dorms.

And today was the first day of class! Had three classes today with the ICLP program. Brief overview:

Beginning Taiwanese (生活台語) - Teacher was super slow. But the class was super fast. Like she didn't even really teach sounds and stuff and just went straight into teaching us to recite a taiwanese poem about the moon festival. But the teacher talked super slow. She must have been nervous or something because was weird. But I'm excited to learn Taiwanese! I've wanted to learn for a loooooooooong time.

Chess King (棋王
) - That is the name of a novel. So yea...basically reading a novel for this class. The teacher is really funny. She looks super strict, but she was like cracking jokes left and right. And there's only one guy in our class so she like picks on him. Poor Brian. Haha. This should be interesting. I want to be able to start reading Chinese novels.

台灣社會短文集 ( Essays on Taiwan Society) - meh...translation is something like that. We didn't really talk about the class itself today. Most of it was just spent introducing ourselves to each other and then just talking to the teacher. The teacher is like 8 months pregnant but really cool. Don't know what else to say besides I have a quiz for this class tomorrow. @@

So basically all the ICLP [Intensive Chinese Language Program] classes are from 1-4pm everyday. Booness. But each class is like super tiny. There's like an average of 5 students in every class. I've never been in a class that small before.

I still want to take a NTU course so that I can actually meet some locals and get to know more people. Have to figure out what I want to take. And I have to go talk to professors too to see if they will let me take their class. I'm thinking of abnormal psychology since it's like a different version of clinical psychology which I've already taken at Berkeley so it can't be that difficult to keep up? *shruG* Guess I'll see on Wednesday when I go audit the class.

And teehee...I went and pre-ordered my Leehom cd today. I now have his single! And a notebook though I don't particularly like the cover. But hey...I have his single now! And concert on Saturday! Excited! Yay!

Friday, September 12, 2008


Blogging every day is starting to get a little tiring. And school starts next week so this is probably going to be the last consecutive entry for this particular streak of entries.

Anyways. Today I FINALLY got a SIM card for my phone. Honestly, this thing was like way more complicated than it needed to be. And it took three tries. And then when I got finally got it it didn't activate immediately which sucked major. So I had to call the guy at the store and then we had this whole calling each other back and forth thing. I feel bad for the guy for making him go through all the trouble of getting my card activated. But he was super nice. So yea. I finally have my own cell phone number in Taiwan. Yay!

Also went to 五分埔 today. It was my first time there and wow it's pretty darn amazing. Clothes for 100NT each (~$3). We were there for probably like 3 hours I think. I bought four clothing items for a total of 350NT (~$11). Can I say cheap? LoL. Here's a glimpse of the place:

It's basically a huge clothes shopping district with little stores lined up right next to each other. And there like streets and streets of it. My feet were sore after the whole ordeal. Not because of the walking...but because I was wearing heels the whole time. I mean they aren't even like really high or anything but I just don't normally wear heels for everyday wear. The only time I heels is for formal wear. Guess this is another thing the new Pam is trying. LoL. Though I have to say that it is painful. I don't know how people do it. But yea.

A typhoon is coming so the weather recently has been outrageously sporadic. Sometimes it's sunny and then the next thing you know it starts pouring. Five minutes later and it's sunny again. Freakin annoying. It will be all over this weekend when the typhoon finally hits and leave. Unfortunately the typhoon has chosen a bad time to come cuz it's the weekend of the Moon Festival. But yea. Will be going back to my grandma's tomorrow for the weekend to 躲颱風 [as she says it]. And then when I come back...classes will begin! @@

Last orientation tomorrow and then school club fair. Shall be interesting.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Officially a NTU student!

So it really only processed in my mind today that I was going to be spending a semester studying here.

Took placement test this morning. Meh. Wonder what level I get placed in. And right after I went to register and get my student id and stuff. And that was when I was like...holy shit...I'm really doing this. And then I get suckered into joining the Foreign Student Association cuz I was like thinking I need to join a club and get to know people but Sherry pointed out that fact that I could just go to the club events and not get the membership which was 400NT. Oh well, I always fall for that kind of stuff. It's like when I joined TSA for a semester my first semester in Berkeley. It was like $20 and I only went to two events. Sucks to be me.

Anyways, I now have a NTU student id. I'm officially a NTU student! Still have yet to activate my NTU email account but whatevs. And I just realized I forgot to sign up for a class I wanted to take. Oh wells. I'll just visit the class laterz.

Anyways. Do you know how ridiculous it is to get a SIM card in Taiwan? Just ridiculous. I've already gone to the store twice and failed both times. Sad sad times. And quite frustrating too since I can't exchange phone numbers with people.

Went to Shilin Night Market today with some peeps. Met more peeps. And had oyster omelette. Good stuff dude. Then did some shopping. Holy crap I bought two pairs of shoes and two shorts. What the heck. I don't usually shop that much. Guess this is the new Pam in action eh? LoL. And then we went to eat 雪片 [I think that's what it's called]. I got the coffee flavored one which was pretty awesome tasting. Here's a pic:
The top left in the pic above is mango and the other is I don't know what it's called. LoL. Good stuff. And my first time eating it. Amazing huh. I go to Taiwan so much and yet there is still some stuff that I haven't done yet.

Ok, 1am. Time to sleep. Gnite.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


So I had TWO orientations today. One for EAP [basically UC students] in the morning. And literally right after was one for NTU [all international exchange students]. This whole thing [basically lots of powerpoint presentations] went from 11-8pm ending with a Welcome Party from the Foreign Student Association.

I met my student volunteer today. Really nice person. And easy to talk to. Feel bad that I didn't call her when I arrived but I didn't exactly know what to say if I did call her.

The welcome party was cool. Met some people and got to know some other people a little better. Though I did get like 6 mosquito bites which wasn't fun at all. Time to go buy some bug repellent! ><

Oh, and the funny thing at the welcome party was that they were serving mixed drinks and ONLY mixed drinks. And when I say mixed I mean like actual alcohol and stuff. I thought that was quite interesting since it's something you won't see at Berkeley or probably any of the college in the states. The drinking age in Taiwan is 18 so I guess it's okay for alcohol to be served to students since most people are 18 by the time to get to college.

Anyways...I'm freakin tired from this day of listening to a lot of stuff that I don't remember. Tomorrow is chinese placement test and registration. Fun.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Moved In!

Arrived in Taiwan yesterday. The grandma picked me up and stayed the night at her place.

And today I have officially moved into the NTU dorms. Finding the dorm was ridiculous. First of all, the international student dorm is in the same building as the graduate student dorm. And there's no sign. And it's like right next to a construction site. And the taxi driver circled campus like three times before we found it. RIDICULOUS. At least the taxi driver deducted money from the fare because he felt bad about it.

Here's a glimpse of my dorm room.Kinda ghetto looking I know. But that's life in Asia. I have the bottom bed and the desk closest to the door. Something interesting is that there are like keys for everything. You see the storage space under the top bed? There's keys to lock those. And there's a lock on one of the desk drawers. And another lock for another closet. Crazy. So basically I have four keys for the room.

And there is actually tons of storage space. At first I thought I had brought too much stuff. Left, a small suitcase of winter clothes at my grandmother's. But it turns out that I didn't really bring that much because I was able to hang everything in my big suitcase in the closet under the top bed. So I didn't actually bring too much. More like the suitcases I brought are too small. I look around and see everyone's suitcases and they are HUGE compared to mine. Guess I'll have to figure something out later when I leave.

Anyways. Moved in. Met up with Sherry who lives on the same floor and had lunch with her aunt and then wandered around and bought some stuff. I needed to get a SIM card for my phone and so we went into this phone store and the lady there was really cool and nice and super funny. And we ended up having a nice conversation with her. I also got a case for my DS.

And we also played DS together! Sherry brought her sister's DS and we played multiplayer games. Super fun. Haha. It's funny how the UCs pretty much take up the whole floor. Our floor is co-ed but divided into guy and girl wings. And the girl wing has a door which closes and locks at 9pm. You need a card key to swipe yourself in so guys can't walk in. LoL. And most of the girls I've met so far are from a UC. Haha. But tomorrow is orientation so I'll probably meet a variety of people. It's kinda like TTT.

And lastly...roommate. Met my roommate today. And laughed. Because my roommate is from singapore. Haha. My subletter is from Singapore and so is my roommate. I think that's pretty funny.

Tomorrow is orientation day. EAP orientation 11am-1pm. NTU orientation 2pm-something because there's a welcome party at the end. Busybusy day. I'm already super tired.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Just to Start This Off...

Oh gosh, I already have enough online blogs as it is...why in the world am I creating another one?

Anyways...I noticed that Sherry made a blog for our semester abroad and I figured I might as well too. This shall be interesting...I'm curious myself about how often I will update this. But anyhoo...

Three weeks in China with the family is coming to an end. Berkeley already started a week ago and facebook has never stopped reminding me of it with all the recruitment event invitations and fb statuses. Is it weird to be sad about missing the beginning of school?

But it's ok. The beginning of Berkeley has ended. And the beginning of NTU, MY school for the semester will be starting very soon. Tomorrow I fly off to Taiwan. The next day is dorm move-in day. And the day after that is orientation. And the day after that is Chinese testing. Busy schedule I got there. But it's okay. After three weeks of not having a busy schedule I'm ready to start getting busy again.

One complaint though. Packing. Packing is such a biatch. No...scratch that. REpacking is a biatch. Especially when one airline allows two checked baggage and two carryons and another only allows two checked baggage and ONE carryon. So imagine me trying to fit a carryon into a checked. It's quite bothersome. But I guess it's to start getting my brain working again...haha.

Throughout the whole summer and even during last semester people would often ask me if I was excited about studying abroad. And I could never really answer the question. For most people (I think) studying abroad is new and exciting because they are going somewhere they've never been before or haven't really been to in a while. For them, it's a chance to explore a new place and culture. my case it's a little different. I go to Taiwan like at least once every year. It's my home country. So it's not exciting in the sense that I'm exploring a new place or culture since I'm pretty familiar with it already. For me, it's more of a developing my own identity kind of thing. Yes, Taiwan is my home country, only because I was born there. But I grew up in the US. I don't know what it's like growing up in Taiwan. So, to better understand this place I call my home country, I go back to experience life the way the natives do. I've already gone back and worked for a summer. I've gone back for culture camps. And now I'm going back as a student. So am I excited? Probably not as much as other people. But as time gets closer I'm starting to feel the excitement build. So we shall see...

This entry is really long. Anyways, I shall end this entry with one last thought.

Studying abroad will mark a new chapter is this thing they call life. Three years of college already and while OASES has made a big impact, I can't really say much about college being all that great. I'm really hoping this semester will be able to show me the greatness of college. This new chapter is a new beginning. And a new beginning means starting over again. So I'm starting over again. I'm going to enter Taiwan a "new" person. These three weeks in China have been spent making this new person. I got my first manicure, got my hands waxed, new hairstyle...hell I even got a PINK cell phone [of all colors..@@]. Life is all about taking risks and I'm doing it right now. Now it's time to see how this new me handles this new life....加油!! ^^