January 28th 2005

Got my hair cut yesterday and this time very short. It’s my contribution to the run-up to Chinese New Year’s tradition to leave old things behind and looking for the new to come…looks a bit strange maybe, however it’s just hair and will grow very fast, moreover it’s very convenient to get up in the morning without your hair messed up and looking like a 5-year-old toothbrush 😉

January coming to the end quite soon and this is only my second and probably last entry this month. The last weeks I was quite busy in finding job offers and writing a lot of emails, I think it must be 40 or 50 right now. Tonight I will go to an interview and next week it seems that I have two more. It’s nothing countable yet, but at least more than nothing, the motto seems to be: No pain, no gain!

However, there’s always the problem that the work place is very far away from the place I live, the minimum seems to be 30 minutes by bus for one way, but on the average between 45 minutes and one hour, cannot change this fact, so once more: No pain, no gain!

Besides all of this demure facts, last week I found a way to stay three more months at least! My dad and I calculated the amount of tax refund I could expect for the last year. Because I paid taxes on a twelve months basis, but in fact only worked seven I’ll get quite a nice amount back from the taxman 🙂 I consider it as a welcome bonus and maybe a sign to go on with my life over here. So yesterday I registered for three more months at the Language Center, which makes it 18900NT more to pay, so the money is really easy come and easy go 😦 I hope the investment will work out, because I invest in myself and my future….I will find out soon anyway.

The country begins to focus on Chinese New Year now, it will be my second time after last year, when I was here on a two-week-vacation. Except the Language Center, the whole university has holidays since this week and walking over the campus is quite like walking over a graveyard…today I only saw three other people beside me! My teacher will go to Canada this weekend, so I also have two days off next week and the week after my 10-day-holiday will start.

I think February will also pass very soon, not only because it only has 28 days, but also because of Chinese New Year and Final Exams! When things will return normal, I think it already will be March or close to, hopefully the weather will be better then…right now it’s not warm, okay also not really cold, but however, it’s the kind if weather which is useful for nothing and…a day without the sun cannot be a sunny day! Have to go now, good luck to me and nice weekend for you 🙂

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January 17th 2005

I’m sorry that I didn’t write earlier, two and a half weeks of the new year already passed and I’ve been quite busy. So for this month I don’t think that I will write as much as in December. Right now I’m in the race of finding a good solution for continuing my stay in Taiwan. It isn’t over yet, but time really flies away, thus the race heats up with every new day passing by. However, currently I make my most basic experiences in Taiwan. And they are very oppositional.

Last week, I went to a meeting with a girl who was searching for a German tutor. We exchanged some emails before and I gave her a call to make sure where and when to meet and so on. For the Taipei residents: We were supposed to meet at Beitou Station, I’m living in Hsinchuang….this means a ride by bus and subway for more than one hour, I did it in 70 minutes, which is quite quick actually. I even asked my teacher to leave class 15 minutes earlier, so I could be on time and I was. But…no one was there to meet me! I was giving her a call, but her cell phone was switched off. I sent her test messages. Nothing. After some time of waiting I received the received status of the text messages, so I knew that she turned on her cell phone. I called again, but she didn’t answer and also stopped my call. I asked my girlfriend to call her and she even accepted the call, but when my girlfriend was asking her what was going on with the meeting she just hung up. Make your own opinion about it.

However, have to get over it. Last week Tuesday and Wednesday I did some private teaching in English and German and on Friday I had a job interview! Again, it was very far away from the place I live, but a company cannot disappear at least, I said to myself. So I took the ride early in the morning and was right on time again. The interview was held in English and Chinese and somehow it worked out for me. The company’s name is Acoustiguide, they provide audio-tours for museums and other famous public places, including Taipei 101. Well, I got the job and on Saturday I was standing at the observatory deck, which is at the 89th floor of the highest building in the world to explain how to use the audio-machine…..in Chinese most of the time. It’s quite easy, therefore the payment is quite low, but it’s definitely one of the coolest jobs you can ever get! And I think it’s a very good way to get in touch with other people. The 101 is a place worth for everyone to see…..locals and foreigners, old and young, private people and business people. For sure it’s not the solution at all and like I wrote, time is running away, but maybe some more of these strange hints of destiny will show me the way…uhh, quite pathetic again 🙂

Have exam again tomorrow…it seems it will never stop. But currently many people say that my Chinese is quite good, well, let me say…..understandable somehow, however, still feels talking like crap, like a fish out of the water. Probably this is my own exaggerating self-criticism again, unless it’s not perfect it’s not good enough. Therefore, have to study now, see you later and visit Taipei 101 when you are here!