My next 11 months civil service location has been decided, Keelung City. Keelung is a northeast coast city on the main island of Taiwan. One of the main purpose of Keelung is the harbor, ranked 54 in the world. Back in the history, it was also relatively important to defend the coast line.
I have started researching places to visit around the area since a week ago when I found out I might end up there. I got really excited because although Keelung itself does not have too much to offer but the surrounding areas show great promise. Here are a list of things I plan on visit:
- Hoping Island
- Keelung Islet (Rent a kayak and paddle there, if possible)
- Jioufen Old Street
- Jinshan Beach (Surfing area)
- Long Dong (Climbing/Diving/Snorkeling area)
- Shifen Waterfall
These are just the big ticket items and near by area has a lot more to offer, especially the east coast, Yilan and Hualian. I can not wait to find out how my room would be like so I can start setting things up. Maybe I will buy a motorcycle. We will see.
With all honesty, I did not have many friends in Taiwan. It is a unfortunate truth, the result of studying abroad since the age of 15. Hence, I am really happy that I made a few good friends during basic training and now specialize training. The head instructor said this at the opening session: “Every encounter is destined, cherish it and you will make great friends.” Although the world is so well connected, the distance does not seem as long as before but I still think this sentence has great value within.
Perhaps you only want one or two “BBF” (best friend forever) but I am sure you do not want one or two more enemy. I recall there is a saying, “a friend made is one less enemy.” Of course, I do not think anyone can be BBF with everyone they are friends with but I believe in building bridges with others, making a connection is a way to change the world for the better.
I cherish all the friends I have made and I hope you would as well. I admit that I am not great at keeping in touch but I hold the memories in my heart.
2011 passed me by while I was standing guard at boot camp. It is time to write about the things I have accomplished in the year of 2011.
- Officially ESL Instructor at Carroll University
- Habitat Trip – Flager Beach
- First Overnight Canoeing Trip at Namekegon River
- Rock Climbing Guide at Red River Gorge
- Road Trip Through Midwest and West Coast of United State
- Obtain TCSL certification
Although at the second half of the year I was restricted with my activities by the mandatory military service entry procedure but thankful I was able to use my time well before I came back to Taiwan. I want to make 2012 a meaningful year but I will write that new year resolution next time.
Although I strongly oppose to the way of how training is conducted during basic training. I can not deny the value and the reasons that sometimes it has to be done that way. Time is limited in so many ways and some of us really needs that whip behind us to rush us in finishing tasks and following orders. Of course, I would not say the result of the training would be quality and the relationship between trainers and trainees would be great. However, it is certainly efficient in its own way.
A few things I learned or was reminded of during boot camp:
- Time Management – If I can accomplish my task faster, I can have more time for other things
- Volunteering – It is necessary to first take care our own before we aid others
- Teamwork – Everyone’s hard work could be jeopardizes even if just one person in the group do not act accordingly
- Attitude – Attitude is everything and a change of perspective could be happiness
- Detail – Pay attention to the little details, sometimes that is what matters the most
- Criticism – The ability to accept criticism is valuable
There are a lot more little things, I have a few notes written down. I enjoy the experience but surely would not want to go through it again. Once is enough.