Returning home after a long journey abroad allowed for a fresh perspective on life in Taiwan and how I see it. The first couple of days back, I was mostly having a good time visting my old haunts, seeing old friends, etc. Not too much bugged me.
Of course, after getting back to the grind and the nitty gritty of daily life, the little frustrations started piling up, and I found myself getting annoyed at things like people crowding onto the bus, driving like lunatics, etc.
Instead of letting those (everpresent) problems get me down, I did a quick assessment of my situation and realized that Taiwan, well, was still Taiwan. Nothing had changed over the last week. It was my mental state which had changed, which had affected my attitude and outlook.
Now, granted that every place on this little globe has its own problems, the question is this: To what extent are the “problems” you encounter here products of your own state of mind? Or, to put it another way, to what extent is the focus of your complaining and irritation affected by your current living condition?
I realize those are extremely difficult questions to answer when you’re “in the middle” of things here. BTW, I’m also interested in hearing from folks who’ve left and come back after a period of months (or years), and how that’s affected your perception of life, Taiwan, the universe, and everything.