ocac

Guess what

Some of you know this, others do not. BUT. I am officially off hiatus as of later tonight. I am currently editing my newest chapter for Of Carburetors and Creampuffs (OCAC) and it will be up before I head to bed tonight. Next update for The Nerd Is Strong With This One (NSTO) will be up on Wednesday and following that, updates will be made weekly like they were prior to the hiatus. Again, I want to thank all of you for your patience as I sorted my personal shit out as well as your numerous well wishes over the course of that time period. You are the best bunch of readers I could ask for. My thanks for you is eternal. 

<3

Love, The Spaminator (AKA Sam)

4

some memories:

  • Carp Lak in Hualien, which is a temple in a mountain
  • san-sian-tai scenic area in Taitung
  • rock beaches in Taitung, not allowed to step into the water
  • water going up
  • having BBQ with extremely difficult BBQ kits
  • biking
  • temple with green bean garlic, which is a sweet dessert 
  • Kenting, my favourite place of all Taiwan
  • karaoke on bus
  • Taiwanese opera show
我愛臺灣

I recently returned from a 6 week Chinese learning course in Taiwan and it was probably one of the most amazing things I’ve ever experienced. 

The lifestyle in Asia is so different from what I was used back home. The streets are alight and crowded late into the night, there are street venders with whom you can haggle, the milk tastes different and the variety of things you can buy is much larger, not to mention cheaper. Everyone speaks chinese and I seriously can’t understand a word anyone says, and the public transportation is much better than New Zealand. And then there was the course itself; OCAC, the Overseas Compatriot Affairs Comission at the National Taiwan Normal University. Ths programme is truly amazing, and even though you get kou fen for not wearing your lanyard, being late to bed check and not cleaning your room, I thoroughly enjoyed the trip. It was an amazing experience.

To be clear however, getting up early in the morning to spend my school holidays in a classroom, having a 10pm curfew and not being able to flush toilet paper down the toilet, is not the amazing experience I speak of. In fact, I could have most of those things back home in New Zealand. No, I had the most amazing time experiencing all there is to experience in Taipei with some of the loveliest people I have ever met.

And it was definitely the people that made the trip what it was. 6 weeks with 64 amazing friends from Australia, Guatemala, Brazil and of course, New Zealand, was life changing. None of us were at all close at the beginning of the trip, but that changed fairly quickly. We literally did everything together, whether it was in a large or small group; trolling the night markets for clothes, food, hats, anything really; chilling in B1, playing cards, sharing food, you name it, we did it.

And you would think that spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with the same people, would get on your nerves, but either all of us are extremely tolerable or the circumstances made us so; whatever it is was, I found everyone to be so kind and sweet, yet hysterically funny and entertaining. We had such a great time together, sharing moments and creating memories. There were the embarrassing moments; our karaoke and drama performances, the hilarious moments; the waxing of Kerry and Jordan’s legs, the adorable moments; falling asleep together on the bus and the surprising moments; that little something shared between Colin and Joy. Everything that happened in those six weeks will forever be some of my most treasured memories.

Because of the timing of our term, we celebrated some pretty momentous occasions together. We had our own party down in B1, courtesy of Oswaldo, at Christmas; which was surprisingly fun and entertaining, with food, drinks and decorations. And though many people went to their relatives places, we also celebrated New Years together; watching the Taipei 101 fireworks from the roof and about half of us going out to karaoke bar, while the rest of us sat in the first floor auditorium watching Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging. Though it was perhaps not the most glamorous New Years, I personally quite enjoyed it.

I think the idea of the whole trip, when explained to someone outside of our OCAC family, sounds like a great learning experience, but to any who has ever actually gone would tell you it is so much more than that. It’s gaining life long friends and creating memories together, and despite the tiny rooms and problematic showers, it is a trip of a life time, one you wouldn’t want to miss out on. We all became such good friends in such a short amount of time which is what made the trip so worthwhile, so special, and the farewells so painful. I hope we’ll all be as good friends in the future as we are now.

Near the end of the trip I feared that we wouldn’t all stay in touch, that the older people would not want to interact with the youngins’ once they were back home, that we wouldn’t like who everyone else was back home. And perhaps we are different people when we return to our home countries, to our other friends, perhaps the way we presented ourselves to everyone at OCAC is not normally the side of ourselves we show to people, but it is that side, the different side, that we will all remember and love each other for. Our farewells were heart breaking. It was so difficult to say goodbye to everyone because we care so deeply about each other and despite all the different types of communication, we knew it might be a while before we actually saw each other again in the flesh. Some people came on the trip purely to humor their parents, others came to actually learn Chinese, whatever our reasons for going to OCAC, I’m sure none of us regret it.

To my OCAC brothers and sisters (帥哥, 辣妹),

Keep what we have alive. Never forget each other and never forget the good times we’ve had together. Even though we may not see each other often, we’ll always be the closet of friends. 我愛你們!

Love,

林美連

Tessa Lim

No. 27

第一班

GOOD NEWS THAT I GOT ON MY BIRTHDAY:

I’ve been selected by the Oregon College of Art and Craft to receive the Presidential Scholarship. This won’t pay for everything, but if I do choose to transfer to the school I won’t have to pay nearly as much. I’m humbled and thankful to even be able to get scholarships at this point, seeing as how I’m much less attractive of a potential student compared to incoming freshmen. cool beans 

5

Danzig character sketches.  He’s the protagonist for the narrative, supposed to come off as an arrogant warrior around the ages of 18-25 (I know its a big gap but I’m just shooting for something around there).  

The full body image was the first I sketched out but he looks too nice so I made a few other sketches.  Now he looks just plain evil; maybe I’ve been staring at it for too long but I definitely don’t want that.  

There are a few closer shots of the decorative cloth (slightly different mock ups).  The imagery is depicting him turning into a cat(in an ancient Mesoamerican style).