We made it!

It seems like a long time since we left Texas.  Saturday morning we left the house around 7:30 to catch the flight that made the first leg of our journey to Los Angeles.  After 3.5 hours in the air, we landed in California at noon only to find out that our connecting flight had been delayed, turning a 6-hour layover into about 8 hours of restless sitting.  One 13.5 hour flight, 13 time zones, and the international date line brought us to Taipei around midnight Sunday.

Thankfully, we made it through customs, exchanged currency, and picked up our luggage without any issues.  Olivia and I got on a van and rode 30 minutes out of the city to NAER, the National Academy for Educational Research, where we are staying until Friday during our training.  When we finally called home (around 12:30 or 1PM in Texas), the clock in our room read 3AM Monday.

Breakfast this morning (after a short 4 hours of sleep) consisted of spongy bread, toast, some sort of meat, and almond tea.  We thankfully had time for a quick nap before our training and lunch began.

This is what our breakfast looked like. Yummy!

Today’s training mostly involved an orientation with where we are staying, tips about how to enjoy our time here and what to expect, and a group photo, which apparently is the most frequent way to end any meeting.  We also had our first course in “Survival Chinese,” where we learned about 20 words and phrases.

For our first dinner, the NAER held a welcoming party complete with Coca-Cola, fried chicken, and pizza!  My favorite tonight was the slice with bacon, peas, shrimp, and squid, but Olivia was not a fan of the pizza with wasabi peas.  After eating, we played a short ice-breaker, learned to sing and dance (poorly) to a Taiwanese pop song, and got to know one another a little better.  I headed back to our room but Olivia decided to stay a little while longer to watch (and probably sing) karaoke.  It’s only about 9PM here, but with the jet-lag and a busy day, it feels like it is long past time for bed.

On the screen is a popular Taiwanese Pop song that is sung at every karaoke party. We got to learn the words (sort of).

We have had a great, although exhausting, first day—everyone has been so kind and helpful.  We definitely know this is where God wants us, but for now, I want some sleep.  Tomorrow holds more Chinese lessons and other training, but I think they also have fun, culture-related adventures planned.

–Nick

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Categories: FYI, Taiwan, Travel | Tags: , , , | 13 Comments

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13 thoughts on “We made it!

  1. I am so glad you all made there safe. It sounds as if the adventure is just beginning. I just can’t imagine living in a foreign country. I have visited foreign countries but have never lived there. What an experience! I love that you are willing to share your experience with us. Makes me feel as if I were there with you. If possible, please post some pictures of your events. Take care and God bless you both!

    Jennifer

  2. So awesome! I’m glad y’all made it safely. I love you both, and am soooo excited for your adventures. Don’t forget to take TONS of pictures! (especially of that pizza!) 🙂 -Sister

  3. Rhonda Young

    So glad to hear of your safe arrival and of your first day of training!

  4. Gert DeKruyf

    So good to hear from you. Love to hear about what you’re eating & what you are doing. Love you both!

  5. Auntie

    Yeah! you survived your first day!! I’m sure you’ll have a great year and remember if you get lost or have any trouble just say 浴室在哪里?

    • Auntie, they’ll know what that means by the end of the year, right?!?

      • Auntie

        They already know what it means. Liv guessed right away after my hint. so, I’ll give you the same hint, it’s something everybody needs to know how to say!

  6. Clay

    I’m already so excited to hear all the new adventures and experiences that await you both. Like you, I know Taiwan is where God wants you both to be at this time in your life. Love you both.

  7. Jim and Lois King

    The spongy bread sounds the best to me…yum, yum! Such good news that you arrived safely. Even better news that the same Heavenly Father who watches and cares for us in the USA…is watching and caring for you far across the great pond. Prayers winging your way from your friends at Northside church. ♥♥♥♥

  8. The pizza sounds AMAZING!!! 😉
    I’m so glad you wrote a blog post before bed. I’m SO curious about what you’re doing! Your training today sounds MUCH more exciting than mine!

  9. Keep at it you two! We love you, admire you and pray for you.

  10. Pictures are coming we promise!!!! This whole picture taking thing is something we’re going to have to get better at 🙂

  11. Patty Broadway

    Very much looking forward to hearing you speak Chinese. Laughing OL in advance! (Just teasing.) So glad the trip there was relatively uneventful. What an exciting adventure! So glad you are blogging it.

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