Dan Chapman

I have been in Taiwan for nearly fifteen years, deciding to complicate life by adding cultural confusion to the mix of going from cocky early twenties guy to more mature family man. Along the way I have gone through almost every stage that we foreigners do unconsciously trying to reconcile culture shock, love of Taiwan and home. I have also spent alot of my time outside of teaching, being the only foreigner in local companies - big, small, legit and borderline. Dan blogs frequently at his own site,Betelnut-Equation
Work in Taiwan: Beyond teaching: Part I

Work in Taiwan: Beyond teaching: Part I

After going through the usual stages: teaching… then studying Chinese… then thinking i had made all this effort to study i should try and get a job where i had to speak it – I started to apply for jobs other than teaching. Interviews for teaching English were artificial worlds in which every compensation was […]

Taiwan characters: John and the unlucky taxi driver

Taiwan characters: John and the unlucky taxi driver

John was working hard to turn over a new leaf after leading a rather wild youth. Taxi drivers are always a huge problem; driving recklessly, cutting people off, and never apologizing for doing so. Things had to snap one day. We had just met John at the bar. He had his arm in a sling, […]

English teaching: I want to study miracle conversation

English teaching: I want to study miracle conversation

The older generation were fixated on the idea of learning conversation. “Have you done your homework?” I asked. “Yesterday, my work very busy – go to see client,” replied my student. “Yesterday, you were very busy because you went to see a client, yes? Past tense of go is went, past tense of is…” hold […]

Expat Culture in Taiwan: Definition of Independence

Expat Culture in Taiwan: Definition of Independence

The Taiwanese are not independent is a recurring expat discussion in Taiwan – along with, and because of it, the frustration why we are not catapulted to instant success. It comes from their family relationships. You will here a 40-year old man say he has to ask his parents if he can go on holiday […]

Expat Culture in Taiwan: The 7/11 bar

Expat Culture in Taiwan: The 7/11 bar

The 7/11 was a major expat hangout in Taiwan. Before i came to Taiwan I had actually had a reasonably well-paid job; time was precious so, after work, i hit the pub before getting the last train. In Taiwan convenience stores every hundred yards stocked full of beer that could be bought at anytime of […]

Expat Culture in Taiwan: I am here for the work experience to get a job for a multinational back home

Expat Culture in Taiwan: I am here for the work experience to get a job for a multinational back home

This is another of the assumptions we make: Taiwan is going to give you a leap up into a great job back home, valuable work experience you failed to get back home. For those who come to Taiwan because they failed to get on that graduate training scheme, it is an easy hope to hang […]

Expat Culture in Taiwan: Everyone is setting up a marketing company

Expat Culture in Taiwan: Everyone is setting up a marketing company

There are a number of stages you go through in Taiwan. This one was called: Taiwanese don’t write perfect English so i am going to set up a marketing company. “Just look at this, buddy,” said Josh holding up the brochure for his student’s hose-pipe company, and blocking access to my food which was sizzling […]