Category Archives: Vacations

The Secrets of the Dowry, a Story on Marriage

Translated…

As the younger generations dated now, so long as they’re getting along well together, and feel fitting to be together, there’s little issues on the matter of dowry from the female’s side, but, my colleague, Lee’s daughter, Xiao-Jun is not like that at all.

Xiao-Jun had dated a man who’d studied in the technical majors, Ying-Chao, who’s from a middle class family for years, she’d told him clearly, “If I am to marry you, then, you must prepare the dowry of $300,000N.T. for me, and you MUST not ask me about how I’m spending the money.”  The two of them married back in 2005, and, they’d started a nuclear family, gotten along smoothly.

On the eve of their first wedding anniversary, Xiao-Jun told her husband abruptly, “Let’s go to Bali for our wedding anniversary this year, okay?”

Ying-Chao was surprised, “Sure, but, where would we get the money?”

Xiao-Jun said, “So long as you’d agreed, I’d have a way of getting the money.”, and so, they’d spent a romantic and happy wedding anniversary.

As the time flew by, two years had come and gone, on the eve of their fourth wedding anniversary, Xiao-Jun wanted to go to Sabah for her wedding anniversary, on their sixth, they’d gone to Samui Island; on the eighth anniversary, they’d gone to Kyoto, to watch the maple leaves.  They’d taken an anniversary trip almost once every two years.

Ying-Chao became confused, because they’d put all they’d earned together, how was his wife getting the extra cash for their vacations?  Xiao-Jun smiled and told, “Don’t you recall the dowry that I’d asked you for back when we just wed?  Back then, I’d heard my colleague told me, his friend started working at a textile mill that’s just gone on the markets, the owner was extremely kind to the employees, and looked out for them too, and it’d broken the stereotypes that the outside world had of the traditional industries, and the company had developed different strategies, and has a bright future, especially that the stocks and options had paid a TON of interests.

“I believe, that choosing a stock is like picking a husband, great performance, with a steadiness is most important, back then, when the price was about $40N.T.s, I’d bought 7500 shares, and the very next year, it’d paid $28,050N.T. in interests, the next year, I’d gotten $34,800N.T.  Since 2008 to date, I’d received over $39,000N.T. in interests, and the rates of return is well over thirteen percent, so naturally, we can afford to travel abroad once every two years.

“Especially when from back then, the worth of my stocks was only $300,000N.T., and now, it’d increased to $1.2 million N.T., if I just sold ten shares, we’d be able to afford the trip to Europe.”

Ying-Chao shook his head in disbelief, “A dowry that become a lifetime mutual fund; the dowry had made their love even sweeter”, it’s that powerful.

Through it, it’d allowed the two of them to de-stress on vacations, and it’d managed to keep the two people closer to one another, lengthening the love they have for each other.  And now, the two would often discuss where they’re headed next, looking forward to their next anniversary vacations, their lives are filled with excitement and expectations.

So, it’s all thanks to the woman’s foresight, and, she used the dowry to invest in a good stock, and, she’d planned everything out financially, and so her husband and she can enjoy vacations abroad from time to time.

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Filed under Awareness, Expectations, Life, Marriages, Translated Work, Vacations, Values

A Tour Group, Made Possible by Us, Siblings, on Filial Relations

Is that, family vacation again???  Translated…

From last October to now, we’d said goodbye to my younger sister and my youngest brother-in-law who were both diagnosed with cancer, and this made us all, siblings, feel extremely saddened.

Maybe, it’s the impact from their deaths that we’d felt, everybody became very comfortable, talking about the future, and the issues surrounding death and dying, that we shouldn’t keep scores, and just go and do what we want to do right now, at the same time, we had become closer than before.  In my younger brother’s attention, we’d first set up a group using LINE, we’d welcomed the younger generations to add themselves to the group so we can all catch up too.  In the two months’ time, the results were amazing, we’d traded a TON of secrets from our own daily living routines, and my eldest sister, who’s already seventy, who wasn’t adept in using the computer or the cell phones, in the trainings by her son, she could finally use the technologies, and managed to create a TON of surprises for us all too.

Two months ago, the siblings, in my urging, set up a tour group that’s headed to China, the “Eight-Day Trip to Kundali”, other than my younger brother who’d already had something ELSE scheduled who couldn’t make it, everybody ELSE was there, the seven of us, sisters.  And, because we’d assigned the leader of the tour being my younger brother-in-law’s younger brother, it’s like the whole family going on a tour group.  And what’s more moving was, that the guide bought a TON of specialty foods from the local areas, and fruits from his own pockets, and he’d donated almost ALL the tips he’d received from us.  Every night, we’d LINED our friends and family, and shared with them, the goings-on during the day.

With this family touring group, we, the sisters are even MORE confident, as we’d made a date for the years that followed.  The task at hand is now, saving up on the money, and training our physiques, so we can face the challenges the next time around.

And so, this, is a family vacation, made possible by siblings who shared the same minds, and, this, is a good thing to have, but, NOT all of us can share like this, after all, getting along with one’s own family is still a very rare thing.

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Filed under A Cycle of Kindness, Family Dynamics, Family Matters, Life, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Translated Work, Vacations, Values

What One-Hundred Percent Happiness Looks Like

Translated…

I thumbed across the article, “A Hard-to-Forget Self-Help Trip to Japan with the Family”, it’d made me want to write something, to jot down the things we, as a family, encountered on the trip to Hokkaido in July.

After my father followed the nationals to Taiwan, he’d found his home in a city up north, and married my mother who was born and raised in the small northern town, and took up a newspaper delivery job in the town, the newspaper, for 365 days a year, must deliver the newest stories to the subscribers daily.  My father was more relaxed, and would head abroad, and my mother, took over everything big AND small in the newspaper agency.

Two years ago, because my father had gotten old, after he’d transferred his newspaper business he’d had for fifty years, my mother had become a “geek”, especially since last year when she’d fallen from the stairs, broken her hips, traveling abroad became an impossibility for her.  So, when I’d heard that my eldest sister had convinced my mother to go on this trip to Hokkaido, all of us, her daughters, are very excited for her, and started planning the trip right away, and, we’d taken into consideration my parents physical abilities.

Other than borrowing a wheelchair, the airlines also kindly provided the wheelchair services at the airports in both places, so my parents didn’t need to stand in line to get through the customs.  This trip of fifteen to Hokkaido, we’d rented three SUVs, with the four drivers, taking turns, driving, and, the cars had Chinese navigation systems and WIFI, which makes it easier to navigate and communicate on the road, and the assistant to the drivers other than helping to watch the roads, also needed to give the drivers snacks from time to time, in case they doze off.

My father, being a serviceman, is very well-adapted, but my mother, this, was her first trip abroad, she’d looked out the airplane windows, along with the windows of the SUV, and she was so excited she couldn’t sleep.

The four little boys of the third generation, because they had each other’s company, they’d stuck together from dawn ‘til dusk, and became the grandparents’ happiness, and the older siblings would help with the wheelchairs, or act as top-notch photographers, in the land of the lavenders, the straits, the canal, along with the lovers of white, managed to capture the love that my parents shared.

After our return, I chatted with my parents, and recalled the funs we’d had on the trip, and I’d thought to myself, I must remind my sisters, to start planning our next family vacations!

And so, this, is a vacation of a family who got along with one another, and, as the parents aged, they have limited number of days left, and so, you MUST take advantage of the time you have right now, to spend time with them, because each minute would be too precious to be missed.

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Filed under Connections, Expectations, Family Matters, Life, Observations, Philosophies of Life, Translated Work, Vacations

An Unforgettable Self-Help Trip to Japan, on Parent-Child Relationship

Translated…

My daughter and my wife would often complain of how I’d given ALL of my time to my patients, and so, during this continuous holiday of the New Year’s, my two baby girls scheduled the whole family on a self-help vacation to Japan.

The passports, the documents, my children took care, and, the forms are also filled out by the two of them, the two of us, emptied our minds, and started looking at the world the children would.

My second daughter is very fluent in Japanese, regular conversations are no big deal to her; my eldest had gone to study abroad in Australia and New Zealand, and so, driving on the right side of the streets was easy for her to adapt to.  And so, my youngest child was responsible for trip planning, my eldest took the wheel, and the two of sat, relaxed in the backseat, enjoying the music and the scenes.

As we arrived at Awaji-shima, we’d realized that they’d booked a mansion with an amazing view, on the second floor lanai, there was a spa, during the day time, it looks out into the blue oceans, and in the evenings, we could gaze up at the stars.  In the subzero temperature, my wife and I soaked in the hot springs, that, was such an amazing feeling, and I still can’t quite forget how I’d felt on that day.

On the very last night, my daughters went with us to take a tour of the lobby of the hotel, and all of a sudden, the lights went out, I thought there was an outage, and about a minute later, I saw my girls took out thirty long stem roses, in the romantic music, she’d appeared before us in smiles.  And, everybody who was there clapped, and attached to the bouquet was a card, “Happy thirtieth anniversary, mom and dad!  From when we were born, to learning to walk, to going off to study abroad, you’d looked out for us, and now, it’s time that we showed that same kindness toward you too…”, after I’d read through the card, I was already in tears, and I couldn’t manage a word for a very long time.

The harmony in the household, is reliant on the mutual respect from the husband and wife, and the children who acted as lubricants from time to time is also vital as well.  Some say that daughters are the fathers’ lovers from a past life, when I recalled how I was blessed, to be in the presence of three women, I feel so very glad.

And so, this, is the children’s way of surprising their parents on their anniversary, and, the parents and the children must get along very well regularly, for the children to spend so much effort on making this surprise too.

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Filed under Because of Love, Cause & Effect, Family Matters, Kindness Shown, Life, Marriages, Observations, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Story-Telling, Translated Work, Vacations, Values

A Wonderful Journey Shared, on Friendship

In the company of great friends here, translated…

After I’d turned sixty, my husband’s college classmates made a date, that they wanted to travel abroad while they still could!  And, they’d set up the trip so that they started with the farthest regions of the world.

The first time the friends took their families and friends on a cruise, to go to a sea in Greece, there were only twenty-seven who’d attended, and the second time they’d gone, they’d gone to Alaska, and that time, there was thirty-six members.

After a few outings together, we’d all become acquainted with one another, and had learned a lot from each other too.  The couple, H were very personable, they’re the recruits of the vacations, and this time, H had a client visiting, and so, he couldn’t make it, however, Mrs. H was NOT going to let this chance slip by her, and, all the way of the trip, she’d spoken of H daily, and H would constantly LINED her too.

We’d asked her, “Isn’t H thinking of retiring, how could he still be taking on clients?”

Mrs. H said, sort of gloating, “H is excellent in business, while others do what they could, and got very little, H only did the minimum amount of work and gotten the best results, he’d become best friends with his clients and the providers too, and, he just couldn’t get the business away from him.” H, who knew how to make the money roll, told his wife generously, “If you see something you liked, just buy it, you only have one chance, and, if you missed it, you will be in regrets for a very long time, and, you will carry that regret for your whole life. The couple, M, they were very close to each other, everywhere they’d gone, they’d remembered to pick up souvenirs for their kids and grandkids.  Even though after their son wed, he did NOT live with them, but on the weekends, he will return with the children to visit.  M and his wife would prepare a TON of dishes, candies, fruits, and toys too, to welcome them.  And the grandkids are very happy about that, and every weekend, they’d nagged their parents to take them to visit the grandparents, and so, they’re a close-knit family.

Mr. D would always be on the arms of Mr. D, every new city we’d entered, she’d surely search for the Starbucks city cup to get as their souvenir, and bring them home, wanted to give their daughter-in-law who kept a collection a surprise, they’d used their hearts to give back to their kids.

L is very successful in his field, loved his wife very much, and is the best in being a good son, he’d taken his wife, his mother-in-law, and his sister-in-law on the trip.  And his mother-in-law, whenever meeting up with new people, would have nothing but commends to say about him, she is easy-going, and would often wear her smiles to greet everybody, and she’d let the younger generation deal with the traveling plans.  We all say, that we wanted to be just like her, an elderly who is loved by her children and grandchildren, that way, the kids won’t stay too far away.

As for me?  I have a husband who paid attention to detail next to me, guarding me, watching over me, and, the fees and costs, he’d paid, what MORE can I ask for?

The forty year’s classmates can still keep up with one another, accompanied by happiness and health, we call ourselves, “couples who have bliss”.  We hope, that for the futures, we can get to go on more trips such as this one.

And this, would be a good example, of how to age gracefully, and, the people are all very well-rounded, they don’t nickel and dime, and that, is why they’re able to get along easily with one another.

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Filed under Expectations, Friendships, Trends, Vacations

Traveling Together as Friends, They’d Become In-Laws

A story on marriage, translated…

My son told me, “I can’t believe it, I’d become the matchmaker”.  In the afternoon, there were two older women whom he somehow recalled having met who’d come to the travel agency he worked for,  handed him a box of wedding cakes, kept saying thanks, and said that they’d just wanted to show him their gratitude.

My son took a bite from that sweet cake, told me the story from the very beginning.  Mrs. Chang from Chonghe, and Mrs. Hsu who lives in Taoyuan, didn’t know one another originally, but, two years ago, they’d both signed up for the tour group led by my son to the Rockies for ten days, and that, was how they met.  Based off of what he’d told me, Mrs. Chang, whenever she’d spoken about her only son who’s had his sight set too high, she’d started sighing, and Mrs. Hsu told of how old her daughter was getting, and was totally against matchmaking, she also shook her head nonstop.  The two mothers who are having similar troubles with their kids shared that connection, after they’d finished the trip, they’d recalled NOT having one another’s contact information.  Later, Mrs. Chang had a photograph of her and Mrs. Hsu, she’d called up my son, and tried to get her phone number from him, and my son became the middleman, and the two ladies connected.

They’d both gotten addicted to traveling, and, meeting someone with whom they’d gotten along is even a rarity, the ladies became like children, and, they’d scheduled their next trips together too, a few months later, Mrs. Chang and Mrs. Hsu signed up for the trip to Angkor Wat together, it’s just that on that trip, they’d brought along the pictures of their children, with their clear motive, but, neither one of them spoke anything on it.

After the return from Angkor Wat, my son received yet, calls from those two old clients, this time, they’d picked the trip to Kunming and Lijiang, and, the number of the tour group became six, three men and three ladies.  Mrs. Chang who knew what the trip was all about told my son, that if he could, set their rooms next to each others, so they could have a way of keeping each other company; there was a night where they would be living in a mansion together, and that the six of them must BE sharing the same house.  After Mrs. Chang told my son, Mrs. Hsu called, to tell him the same things again, and begged him, to handle this matter delicately.

When my son took the families’ passports, he’d finally understood, that the two ladies had alternative motives.  Later, even though, they’d become silent for a long time, and my son wanted to know what happened next, but he didn’t feel comfortable, prodding, and so, the experience slowly, faded from his mind, and now, the older women came to him, arm in arms again, and the traveling buddies had become in-laws now.

“It’s such a blessing”, my son laughed.

Other than broadening the horizons, traveling can also help you find great in-laws.  He said, that from here on out, when he tried to sell the products, he will surely mention this extra “goodie”.

And so, the two mother met, and they got along together well, and, that is the basis of all relationships, friendships, and, because the ladies got along well, and so, after their kids married, they will be great in-laws, and, says W-H-O in-laws must hate each other?

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Filed under Connections, Family Matters, Friendships, Life, Marriages, Moods, Emotions, & Feelings, Story-Telling, Translated Work, Vacations

The Small Happiness by the Lake, Taking It Easy on the Weekends

Weekend relaxation time, translated…

A few years ago, we lived in a college town that’s very beautiful, there were beautiful scenes in the town, so very scenic.  But, even though we lived in this heaven on earth, but, we were rushed by our daily lives, as the adults worked hard away from home and the kids worked hard in their studies, there’s NO time for us to slow down and enjoy.

After the spring, there was a morning of a long weekend, we’d decided to head out by the lake for a picnic.  We’d prepared some simple sandwiches and fruits, loaded up the folding bikes, Frisbee into the trunk, and carried a couple of good books, then, we’re off.  We’d lain the blanket by the shaded trees close to the lake.  The kids couldn’t wait to take their shoes off as they walked along the lake to pick up pebbles, to make sand castles, and we would read our books, and hold easygoing conversations with one another.  There would be ripples from the small boats in the distance.  The kids worked hard building the sand castles and making the ditches, they’d come up with a TON of childish, innocent ideas, and helped cleansed us of our adult weariness.

After lunch, we’d started throwing Frisbee by the lawn, then, walked along the path of the forest.  The kids naturally loved running and stopping to explore.  They’d picked up the branches, pretended they were swords, or the magic wands, they’d attempted to save those endangered species of animals, or to turn rocks into gold, exercised their imaginations freely.

On the stage of nature, the stories evolved quicker and quicker, and they’d become more and more complicated too, sometimes, we the adults would get involved in their plays, all I can say, is that children are natural storytellers.  And this sort of great parent-child bonding, all I can say, is that they’re memories that made me smile whenever I’d recalled them.

Later, picnicking by the lake became something we’d set time aside for on the weekends, and it’d became the motivation for our hard working on the weekends too.  Even though we’d moved away from that small town now, but, from time to time, I’d still gaze out the window, recalling those wonderful weekends we’d spent by the lake.

And so, this, is a great memory, isn’t it?  Having the family together on an outing, and now, the kids are all grown, and, it would be hard for them to visit every single weekend, because they have their own lives to live, but you’ll always keep this memory close to your hearts.

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Filed under Childhood, Connections, Family Matters, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Translated Work, Trends, Vacations, Values