I travelled to understand the world and what the best talents could do – that was through a unique road trip through the United States.
I travelled to discover just how different people can be even in close proximity – that was through train rides for city escapades in Europe.
I travelled to sense, with my five senses, good quality produce at good prices – that was through my sensory journeys in Japan.
However, this time was different.
I travelled to a place famed for its night markets and shows. But beyond that, it’s not bustling Tokyo, neither is it a reinvented city with quaint charm and the graphic display of history like Berlin. It tries to be a technology hub, but is not San Francisco either.
However, this place sparks a different kind of joy. We can speak the same tongue, connect, and make new friends so easily. The joy of friendly people that welcome us as if we are one of them. It’s once again not Tokyo, where one is a gaijin as long as one is not Japanese. It’s also not San Francisco, where there still exists explicit racism. And it’s certainly not Berlin, where there exists certain shades of danger in quiet corners. Making friends here is effortless.
Welcome to Taipei, a city in Taiwan. A city where I have made many friends through common experiences. To travellers, what we remember aren’t so much the travel guides we read or the tourist dollars we spend, but the memories we forge with its people. Memories are forged with friends whom we share common experiences with, such as enjoying a simple walk in the park, a tea up in the mountains, or singing at a Taiwanese KTV.（我唱歌的能力还不到你们的水准。）I treasure Taiwan most for friends, and I have been honoured to meet so many of you!
P.S. To my newly-made Taiwanese friends, please don’t make me type an entire translation in Chinese, but I promise I will type more Chinese. 我会打多一些中文，因为我自己也觉得我的中文有进步的空间。我用英文打字是给机会学习怎么读英文喔！