Visiting a former Homestay student
Host: Mike Harrison
Earlier this year I took the opportunity to visit some of the homestay students who have lived with us over the past 15 years; we chose to go to Taiwan. Because over the years we have hosted many students from Taiwan and because of our ‘open door’ policy, we have also met many other students who were friends of those staying with us. So, my stay in Taiwan was full with meeting friends, renewing acquaintances, and in some cases having the opportunity to meet their families and visit their homes. I not only met my "Chinese daughters," but also their husbands and in some cases my "Chinese grandchildren."
Highlights of the visit include the overwhelming hospitality of my hosts, the magnificent scenery and parks, a visit to a sculpture garden dedicated to the world-famous Taiwanese sculptor Ju Ming, and getting up at 3 a.m. to take a narrow-gauge train to the top of Mount Ali to see the sunrise. We were blessed with a beautifully clear sky and rewarded by a magnificent sunrise.
Most of all, the trip reinforced in me the benefits of being a homestay parent and the wonderful and enduring love and friendship of those who have entrusted themselves to us for their stay in Victoria.