Well, I booked a flight to Taiwan! That’s right, I’m going to Taipei, Taiwan, in January. I’m beside myself! My adoption search contact here in the states, Tien, invited me awhile back to go with her when she travels to Taiwan. She’s going back to visit family for Chinese New Year, as well as take care of some business. Although there’s not much time to prepare, I couldn’t pass up this opportunity to go with someone familiar with adoptions from Taiwan as well as the country itself. Luckily, I was able to book the same flight overseas, so Tien and I will be flying and meeting together for the first time since we first began corresponding, nearly two years ago! I’m very much looking forward to finally meeting face to face.
Today, I got my passport paperwork taken care of. I tried not to be too disappointed at how bad the photos came out! I’m also trying to decide on the best hotel to stay at and how to hire a travel guide who I can take with me everywhere I go. Within a week or two, I’ll begin taking Mandarin lessons. I’m just waiting on my new tutor to contact me. I won’t know enough to speak the language fluently before I go, but maybe I’ll be able to learn a few phrases.
This trip will be a milestone in my journey towards finding any living members of my birth family. And just as important, it’s an opportunity for me to connect with my birth culture, really for the first time. I know that it will be a memorable and life changing experience. Perhaps the first of more trips in the future back to the country where I was born, at least I hope so. I’m thrilled. I’ve never done anything quite like this, travel to another country without anyone else. In college, I was in a show choir, and we traveled internationally every other year. One year, we went to Tokyo, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, New Delhi, Agra, and London. It was quite the experience and one that I enjoyed very much. I grew to love traveling abroad. I would love to travel to Hong Kong again and also to Seoul, Korea one day. For now, I’m Taiwan bound. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Chinese New Year!