Posted by: atarimonos | October 20, 2008

Happy Birthday

The Gholz family is known for birthdays in October. So happy birthday to: Grandpa, Grandma, Aunt Renee, and Soph. Cheers to us all for being born in such a spectacular month!

In other news. It’s 77 degrees in Taiwan and the heat/sun is bearable. Although, I freely admit I’d much prefer the cooler temperatures of Michigan. In respect to current events nothing too much to report. I’m soon to apply for my Alien Resident Card. It’s humorous when I consider that I am an alien … harr harr. As to other developments, I’ve begun my travails throughout Taoyuan proper. I must say, beneath the scuzzy surface lies a charming atmosphere. The give and take of life is no better illustrated than my witnessing of religious festivities at one of the many Ma-tsu temples located in the city. Watching the devotees as they prayed, divined, and worshipped was an impressionable experience. I quietly observed the Old woman throwing her “moon blocks” (Divination blocks … I don’t know their technical name), the young woman meditating, and the Father teaching/showing his daughter how to wave her incense. I plan to return there soon.

Religious experience, prayer, and ritual are all aspects to which I’m very interested. I find that part of my time is spent teaching English … the other is devoted to exploring the web-ways of cultural meaning and language. Religious language is particularly interesting in tackling the pre-existing meaning of larger questions. Specifically, the Taiwanese religious vocabulary is adept at possessing and conveying meaning to a larger audience, even one as inarticulate as I.

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