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It’s all about growing up: an Exchange Experience in Taiwan

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Written by: LIN Yanliu
Photo by:ZHAO Beizhi
Edited by:James Campion |  Date:2016/04/1121 Hits

Taking a stroll through the prosperous and bustling street in Taipei, visiting Taipei Palace Museum, snorkeling in the navy-blue sea of Kenting city, sunbathing on a stretch of beautiful beach, walking down through an old and quaint lane to find some traditional delicious food in Gaoxiong city, and appreciating several colonial consulate sites upon arrival in Tainan city, ZHAO Beizhi, a Junior majoring in Chinese Language and Literature, spent a semester studying in Taiwan and harvesting wonderful and unforgettable memories.

 

The navy-blue sea in Kenting city

 

“Every day I woke up with some sense of curiosity and enthusiasm to travel around because Taiwan is so fascinating and accessible,” ZHAO said. She was impressed by the friendly, patient and considerate nature of the people there. “When I asked them for help, they always smiled and were ready to do me a favor.”

 

At the very beginning, ZHAO admitted that she wasn’t that clear about her choice. “My friends who study Korean or Japanese are extremely excited about their exchange life in Korea or Japan. But after handing in my exchange application, I hesitated and felt very confused why a student studying Chinese Language and Literature should exchange to Taiwan? And the subsequent procedures are so complicated that I almost wanted to give up.” However, she still put her step in Taiwan, believing that she could seek out the answer some day; “it was just like a muffled voice calling me.”

 

Walking down through the fragrans lane to find some traditional delicious food

 

She ultimately found out the answer when traveling to Hualian city. Being immersed in the striking vistas of Taroko National Park, Zhao was enchanted by the towering mountains that were cloaked in cloudy mist, and covered in different shades of green, waterfalls cascading from sheer cliffs, and the fathomless and imposing canyons.

 

A glimpse at Taroko National Park

 

The most significant point was that she encountered a grey-haired man who used to be a college professor with profound erudition and had traveled around the world. The old scholar admired the importance of Chinese literature and encouraged her to delve into it. He stated: “The extensive and profound Chinese Literature is a vital part of traditional culture. As the era is becoming more and more impetuous and utilitarian, the younger generation is unwilling to put a glimpse into Chinese literature, considering it useless. By all means, you must be a Chinese literature inheritor and disseminator.”

 

What the old man said absolutely touched her because, as a student majoring in Chinese Language and Literature, she is always confronting queries about her choice and future, which often mystifies her. And now, she seemed to get to the point and realized her responsibility.

 

Taking a photo to remember the trip to Xinzhu city

 

“I will remember Taiwan as this awesome chapter in my life that can’t be duplicated. Thanks to this exchange programme, I walked a lot and experienced a lot. Everything has its own sake. For me, it’s all about growing up. And now, it is time for me to reexamine my goal and my own life,” smiling, Zhao concluded in a soft and calm voice.