I wanted it wilder and more adventurous. This is why I chose to leave Taipei to travel the East Coast of Taiwan. According to my plan, I was supposed to spend two weeks in Hualien and explore the Taroko National Park as much as I could, and slowly make my way down south, stopping here and there.
But you know me pretty well by now, and you know that I suck at sticking to the plan.
In the train to Hualien, on that day of May, my heart was a bit heavy. The previous night I’d met a bunch of French guys, travellers, Working Holiday Visa holders, Mandarin students living in Taipei: laughs were honestly bursting and the connexions were sparkling. Every time I’m meant to disappear into thin air, I’d find forty-two reasons to stay and taking the high road takes quite an exhausting courage.
I got a message that day of May, the kind of message I was dreading to get for the past weeks. You see, I was fool enough to fall in love before heading to Taiwan. I fell. In love. And the shock of me hitting the concrete was so violent and unexpected that I actually wavered at the decisive moment whether to take this flight to Asia.
I did almost flinch. But as always, I tend to put my ideals on top of the shelf, even though it’s killing me sometimes. We didn’t make any promises, although my trembling body was whispering: “promise me something, I will promise you anything”. But everybody knows about how much Oceans can grow people apart, and all that shit, so that wasn’t obviously reasonable to make any promise. Right?
Anyway. The point is that this man eventually fell in love with somebody else. Inevitably. Somebody who’s probably not wandering around more than 9 800 km away. Somebody balanced enough who doesn’t need to lose herself geographically to find herself. It was the most normal and logical thing ever to happen. Something so common it made me cry. Right here and there on that train.
I cried for this aborted love which didn’t get its chance. I cried for this deep unexpected magic that took me by the throat few weeks before I got on this plane. I cried because, dammit, what the hell I am doing there, here on that train, on this tiny island where I can’t even read a menu, this tiny island where I’m supposed to live, work and love for one year. While over there, in this bloody stinky city, there was a man who managed to awake the magic of possibilities. Fucking hell.
It seems that Taiwan had some other plans for me than allowing me to hide away in my sweet cabin of sadness. For I found a home in Hualien. Which hosted the most cosmopolitan and motley family I ever had.
That’s unbelievable, that you could just arrive in a new place, a little bit lost, with old dried up tears on your sweaty cheeks, resolved to find a place to lock yourself in and cry, cry, cry again and again and mope like there’s no tomorrow – it’s unbelievable that in that state you’re able to find a loving and benevolent family as well as a house of happiness that you won’t be able to leave without feeling like your heart is ripped off your chest.
That wasn’t the plan. I was supposed to mope one big time and then keep going with my travels around Taiwan.
I laid Monster the backpack in a corner of this dorm instead, and it (barely) moved for more than three months. That’s right honey. Three. Months.
I just walked through the World Inn’s door.
LET’S GO THERE! :
WORLD INN, No. 630, Ziqiang Road, Jian, Hualien County