It's way more expensive, it's not as fresh, it has weird English names, and did I mention it's way more expensive? But my first experience at a sushi restaurant in the US was a positive one. For those not keeping score at home, I'd never dared to eat sushi until it was forced upon me in Taiwan, and I quickly fell in love.
Considering I've been home for over three weeks, there are still many foods on my to-eat list, and I have a great deal of unpacking left to do. Of course, the fact that I never unpacked from senior year of college doesn't make anything easier.
I should probably justify my latest prolonged absence. I wasn't only sleeping. First my laptop decided to stop turning on (again). Then the wireless internet decided to stop working, so even my mini laptop was useless.
The truth is also that I have no idea where to start. I have a lot of un-blogged stories and pictures that I'd love to share with you.
So let's start at the very beginning. Well, the beginning of this year, anyway. I never did write about what I did to ring in 2009.
At the very end of the first semester, the student teachers at Fu Xing got enough free time and outgoingness to introduce themselves. I had had no idea that there were a handful of other 22/23-year olds wandering the halls of Fu Xing, also without teaching experience. I got the chance to hang out with some of them a few times before the semester ended (they left Fu Xing after first semester). They ended up inviting me out for New Years' Eve.
First, we had dinner at Ikea. I had the Swedish meatballs.
Then we went to the Dream Mall (the "Times Square" of Kaohsiung?) for festivities and fireworks. We had to pose with the World Games mascot:
Then we met up with fellow Fulbrighters Billy and Dan.
I even ran into one of my fifth graders, Willy! No, it was not really cold enough to warrant wearing a hat (maybe 55 F), but I really wanted to feel wintery.
And then there were fireworks.
After the fireworks, we headed home in what I thought was impossible: a scooter traffic jam. But I was really glad to get to know Kenji, Ray, and Etty. Even though Kenji and Ray went back to Taipei at the end of January, Etty continued on as Fu Xing's new Taiwanese teacher for the second semester, and her classroom was right next door.
A very belated happy 2009!