(last updated on May 17, 2016)
I have been pretty quiet for the past couple of weeks, particularly with regards to my “Groundhog Day Resolutions” goals. That’s because I’ve been really pre-occupied with a month-long trip to Taiwan, the land of my ancestors, where I shall again attempt to engage with a semi-familiar but mystifying culture. I have always felt something like a “failure” in terms of engaging with my cultural heritage despite ample opportunities to embrace it, as a mixture of embarrassment and feeling like an outsider wreaked havoc with my adolescent sense of self. Now that I’m almost 50 (!) I’m thinking that maybe I can tame those old childhood demons.
This is the second trip of a demon-taming nature; I also went last year and, like a nervous cat investigating a new home, got adjusted to the sights and smells of the place again. This time I’m hoping to travel more, be less apologetic/guilty about being a Taiwanese-American that can’t read or speak either Taiwanese or Mandarin, and try to have a good attitude about everything. Attitude is really important! It can change everything! I have to keep telling myself this! And add exclamation points whenever possible!
I’m at home waiting for the Flightline Shuttle to drive me to Logan Airport, then I’m on a red-eye flight direct to Hong Kong via Cathay Pacific. This is my first time flying Cathay Pacific, which is supposed to be an excellent airline. I’m shutting off computers now, giving a tearful goodbye to my other cat Kate, and am doing a last check of the house security before heading out the door. I have new glasses that have a blue frame, and I am also wearing a Star Wars t-shirt under my shirt because it is MAY 4TH; I couldn’t let that go uncelebrated!
My May 5th Groundhog Day post will likely be late. Will be back in about 36 hours!
About this Article Series
This blog post is part of a series about reconnecting with my heritage in Taiwan while testing my mettle as a traveler, covering my second trip trip in May 2016. All posts are collected on The Taiwan Travel Challenge 2016 Page.