Thursday, November 17, 2011

Visiting that other windy city

As mentioned in the previous post, we had our first double-header this past weekend.  On Sunday, we flew into Chicago, that all-American city often known, among other things, for its fresh breezes and blustering natural ventilation.  After our visit this last weekend, I can affirm that, Chicago is indeed, well-ventilated.  Sadly, none of the pictures which we took really show any evidence, so you'll just have to take my word on this.  I do also have to say that the windiness was about the only thing which Chicago is known for that we actually experienced.  We missed out on both the hot dogs and the deep-dish pizzas.. we missed out on the diverse ethnic food offerings.. we missed out on the coffee scene.. we missed out on a lot of things that people would typically associate with a Chicago experience, but I digress.  We didn't travel to Chicago to be tourists.

The reason for our trip was because we received an invitation from the Taiwanese American Student's Club (TASC) at Northwestern University to share Dear Taiwan with the local community.  We were warmly welcomed by both students on campus and members of the local Taiwanese community alike.  It was the first time that either of us set foot on Northwestern's campus, and really, it is a magnificent campus.  The weather was also just beautiful, making the entire experience all the more enjoyable.  Honestly though, if I had to pick one thing that was negative about the outdoor conditions that weekend in Chicago, there needed to be more leaves.  That lack of leaves on trees really just drove home that, albeit already apparent, dreaded feeling screaming "winter is coming".

A lively discussion followed soon after the conclusion of the film.  I mean, so lively that it continued on our way over to dinner, as evidenced by the photograph to the left.  The range of conversation went from the relationship between U.S. and Taiwan (and consequently the rest of East Asia) to the richness and vivacity of Taiwan's current music scene to feeling relieved knowing that Taiwanese society really has developed well, harboring and nurturing such individuals, as showcased in the film, with such diverse and passionate interests in the well-being of Taiwan.

The energy of the crowd that afternoon was truly incredible.  Despite having already conducted a few of these screenings, I'm still amazed by all the people we meet, and the wealth of the conversations, and diversity of experiences and perspectives shared.  Thank you again TASC@Northwestern and the Chicago area Taiwanese community for your kind hospitality.

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