Just bought the house in Puli, and am settled in for the long term. Been scouting the local graveyards for my eventual repose.
But your hair is turning grey already. (Sorry, but you need a mirror).
Let me know if you need some help when scouting for suitable graveyard plots.
Having a kid complicates things. Mine deserves better than the crappy air quality and mind-numbing school system she has to/would have to endure here (Taipei). I'm working my arse off to blitz the mortgage, then we're outa here. The missus & I spent a few years living back in NZ in the early '90s, and she's cool with the idea of going back. I've always had a love/hate relationship with this place (30/70 on a good day), and I really miss so much about home. I'll be glad to leave.
What will I do after Taiwan?
1. Work hard at being a better father than I can be here.
2. Que sera sera. I honestly don't give a shit.
Hmm, Omni, MJB, and JDsmith all plan to retire here. Makes it all that much more appealing. Of course Omni and JD have got to learn to drink more beer though.
I think I can probably help out on that front.
Help on which? The beer drinking or the graveplot hunting?
As far being a better father, in my case at least, I've found it better here than it was working in the tech sector of the US - I was NEVER around, and stressed out about the high cost of living in the Silicon Valley area. That plus the recession a few years ago made for some very stressful times. My wife hated living in the US, and working on my own in Taiwan made dealing with office serfdom unbearable. Living here is much better on all of us.
....grabs cane and hobbles along through the jungle....
I hope you'll be sticking around for at least the next three or four decades, MM. I'm sure we'll still be able to enjoy the hiking and river-tracing even when we're in our dotage.
I am here for the long run as well.
I am married and own a house here as well. I am always up for meeting my neighbors that are fellow lifers becuase losing friends who leave Taiwan has been a bit of a bummer lately.
This must be close to the number one bummer apart from trying to find air that is breathable.
I learned it when a close friend left on my 3rd year here, I'd not yet managed to seduce his wife and it was a sad goodbye. What do you do? I just figure that my close friends are not totally gone, we are all globetrotters to some extent and can meet up. Kind of sad regardless.
Those shirts are wonderful to beat the heat with.When I am not working those are the only shirts I will wear.
I will probably end up being a lifer..
For the lifers: who is taking care of your aging parents? If it is another family member, do you feel that you see them enough? Will you raise your children to xiaosun fumu and take care of you? For people who don't plan to have children, or who have children, but know they can't depend on them 100%, how is the nursing home/assisted living industry progressing in Taiwan? I'm in the US with my Chinese husband and his mother is living at home, bedridden, with her daughter (in her early 20s) and a Phillipina live-in care giver. Popo had a stroke and has Alzheimer's. All 4 sons send money from the US to pay for expenses. My mother lives with me in an addition that she designed and paid for. My father has enough money and favors his sons, so he's own his own as far as I'm concerned.
Good question. This is a major source of guilt for long-term expats here. I have only seen my parents twice in the past decade and I miss their good company. I'm saving up to go spend some time with them.
Two or three years ago, there was a very touching thread about visiting aging parents back home. I'll do a search and see if I can track it down.
edit: couldn't find the thread I was thinking of, but if memory serves me right the main point was that posters felt terrible remorse when their parents passed away; they felt they should have gone home more frequently/earlier.
Thanks Almas John. When I first came to Taiwan straight out of college, I wasn't thinking of my parents at all. But Taiwan/Chinese culture influenced me to a certain extent- to be grateful to the parent (my mother) who had sacrificed a lot for me. I believe in taking care of those people who have done the most for you- and for me, that is my mother. Besides, I actually enjoy her company, even though she gets on my nerves sometimes. Since she lives with me I see her everyday. Recently we were out on a walk when she saw the FedEx truck stopping at our house to deliver her saltwater fish. She started running because she thought that if she didn't sign for them at that moment, the truck would drive away and the fish would die at the Fex Ex facility. I yelled at her to stop because I knew she didn't need to sign, the guy would just drop off the package, but she didn't believe me. Well- she tripped and not only dislocated her arm from its socket, she also broke the arm!!! I won't even go into the callousness of the people at the hospital and how long she had to wait for pain medication and how I had to keep bugging them to give it to her. She still can't drive. I'm just glad I'm able to help her. My sister is very attentive in that she calls a lot and offered to come down and help. My brothers have a good relationship with her, but she usually seeks them out, not vice versa. I think if people in Taiwan already have a good relationship with their parent(s), even if they can't physically be with them, the parents would probably appreciate calls and letters so much (alert: I'm not addressing the people who already do that). I remember my Taiwanese boyfriend used to call his parents in PinDong every Sunday. He didn't talk long. He said he was giving them 'spiritual nourishment.'
It's a very good question.
In my case, my brother and sister live 1,500km and 2,000km from my parents, respectively. My brother prefers to drive when he goes to see them so it takes him two days to do the trip. I can beat that pretty easily when flying from Taipei.
My Dad is one of those old blokes that prefers to think that he is independent and can pay his own way. Even if he needs to live a nursing home in the future, he'd prefer that to being a burden on his kids.
I agree with that 100%. Just knowing what they like is probably part of that. Your boyfriend probably knew that they like to hear his voice. My Mum prefers a hand-written letter to phone calls or emails. I try to write one every two months. It helps me feel a bit less guilty about living so far away.
Wow, not seen the Beachside Queenslander round these parts for quite a while.
Good to see you here.
Marrying someone from the other side of the world means that this problem hits both ways. If we were living in Sweden, then D would not be able to be close to her parents. In the end, you'll just have to consider what is best for you and your partner and leave your folks out of the equation. I mean, how do you do decide who is more important, whether you should live close to your parents or your partner's? That's a discussion I don't want to have.
My husband has this problem because we are in the US and his mother is bedridden in Taiwan. She has a daughter in her 20s living with her, her 2nd husband died a long time ago. My husband and his brothers tried to get her to move to the US, but she didn't want to. They all send money every month to pay for the live in help, and they are not rich people- my husband is the most well off of them all because of my teacher's salary. The other brothers are scraping by to survive. They also try to take turns visiting so that someone visits at least once a year. So they have sacrificed to some extent, and this is for a mother who in many ways neglected them. They feel it is yinggai de, their responsibility. I take care of my mother more out of gratitude and because I enjoy her company, not just because it is my duty. My mom is also around to watch the children when they come home from school, so she is helping me a lot. If you want to leave your parents totally out of the equation, don't want to consider them at all, I guess that you feel that they will do alright without you. As for me, if I were bedridden stuck in a nursing home not able to go to the bathroom by myself or something like that, and no husband, if my children weren't in contact with me in any way, it would be hard. What do you live for then? The compassion in a nurse's smile? The sunlight coming into your room in the morning? Friends would be even more important assuming they were well enough to drive. If I had no one close visiting me, I would just retreat into memories 24/7. Let's just all cross our fingers that we go fast I guess.
Euthenasia seems to do the trick when the oldies are beyond repair.
Partners and children first.
But hey, thats just me.