The Blog

T a i w a n

I was asked by a former co-worker to come to Taipei for 2 1/2 weeks and teach at their animation facility.  That was a little out of my comfort zone. . not the teaching, but traveling to a far away place, where people don't speak my language and I don't speak theirs.  The culture was so different from growing up in Los Angeles.  I also have the palette of a 4 years old (burgers, fries, chicken fingers, etc).  So I was assuming if I went, I wouldn't eat for a couple of weeks.  My friend who invited me out said "Do it for the adventure of it".  That really spoke to me.  I've not been a very 'adventurous' type in my life.  I'm played most things in my life really really safe. . .but not this time.  

Well, LONG story short, but it was one of the most incredible things I've ever done.  From the people, to the culture, the sites, the sounds, the photography opportunities, for communicating with people that don't understand a word I say, to teaching to people who don't understand what I'm saying, the new friends, and the years of memories.  

EVERY evening, when I was done teaching, I would head out.  I would jump on the subway, usually with no destination, and just get off somewhere and start walking.  The only way to see a city is to walk it.  Over the course of my 2 1/2 weeks there, I easily walked 50 miles.  I also was so generously taken on day trips on the weekends by some of my students.  

Night markets, historical monuments, shopping districts, street performers, music, tea houses, baseball games, museums, gorgeous libraries and more.

Thank you Jin, Young, Ayen, Chris, Indra (and Ray) and everyone else for making me feel so at home, showing me so many things, and treating me like a lifelong friend.

I hope I can return the hospitality if you get to the Bay Area!

Here is a sample of my experience in photographs. . .

by Michael Clemens