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Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Wonderful Castle - Etude House

Jessie Chen & Wendy Chang

A beautiful face always attracts people. Although I couldn't choose the face I was born with, cosmetics products can help me improve it easily. Cosmetics products give me a beautiful face almost like magic. Etude House, a Korean cosmetics shop, has a branch store near Feng Chia University. Its variety of cosmetics products and friendly service are popular with many female customers.
All graphics (c) Etude House
I remember the first time I walked by Etude House. I was attracted by its appearance. With its big, clean windows and walls painted in white and pink, this shop looked like an elegant castle. There were also posters of famous K-pop stars on the walls outside the shop. To satisfy my curiosity, I went inside to have a look. The shop was decorated with bright lights, potted plants, curtains, dressing tables, and mirrors. The whole store was warm and comfortable. I thought I was a princess in my fantastic bedroom, getting ready to put on my make up before the ball.

At Etude House, the products are organized according to their use, so you can find what you need easily. All Etude House's products are made in Korea and have passed cosmetics safety tests, so you can feel safe using them. The packaging of Etude House products is very elegant and beautiful. It's hard to decide which one to look at first! The prices are a little high for students, but sometimes Etude House will have sales. During sales the products are cheaper than usual.

My favorite Etude House product is Aloe tea creaming foam. It's made from aloe. After I use it, my skin feels clean and not dry. Also, the fragrance of the cream can help me relax. Best of all, this creaming foam is not expensive; it costs only NT$ 150, and its bottle is bigger than other brands. The service Etude House provides is the main reason why I enjoyed shopping there. There is a sample for each product, so I can test it before buying. The clerks introduce goods carefully to make sure every customer understands how to find the cosmetics just right for their skin, and then how to use them. The clerks are very friendly. They won’t make you feel embarrassed even if you don’t buy anything.

I enjoy every moment shopping in Etude House or sharing their products with my friends. The colorful decorations, variety of products, and friendly service change every girl into a beautiful princess. Go together with friends and give Etude House cosmetics a try. You’ll find that being a princess is not a dream anymore!
Etude House
14 Feng Chia Road, Xitun District, Taichung
Monday – Sunday, 12:00 – 24:00
(04) 2451-0757

Good Job!

Jody Tu & Angie Chang

Finding a good job is something every student thinks a lot about. According to a recent report, it takes new college graduates an average of four months to find a suitable job after leaving school. In order to reduce the time it takes to find a suitable job, Feng Chia University holds a job fair every Spring Semester. Each year, the job fair attracts people who need jobs and companies which need employees.

All graphics courtesy FCU Public Relations Office

More companies than ever participated in the job fair this year. They came to FCU not only to introduce different kinds of occupations, but also to find more talented students at Feng Chia University. The job fair connects companies and students. Students can learn about job requirements, enabling them to prepare for work and making the job search easier. This attracts many students to the job fair.

Because the job fair involves interaction with companies, the school can find out what kind of employees local companies need. This also gives the school a clear direction and helps the school design useful courses. Besides, the job fair strengthens the relationship between the school and the companies.

The annual FCU job fair provides an opportunity for students to find out about jobs they might want and learn how to prepare for employment. This helps them plan for their future. Therefore, we recommend that students participate in the job fair beginning from their first year in university; this will help them set learning goals that will prepare them for their careers.  

"House Rules" - Book Review

Lisa Huang

Every family has their own “house rules.” These are the regulations everyone in the family need to obey. “House Rules” is the 2010 suspense novel written by Judi Picoult.

Image (c) Simon & Schuster;
There are three main characters in the story. The first is Jacob Hunt, a teenager with Asperger’s Syndrome, a condition that prevents him from correctly reading social cues and expressing his feelings. If he doesn’t know how to express his feelings using his own words, he will repeat some words or sentences which he has heard from TV or other media. Little things might make Asperger’s sufferers go crazy, such as seeing the color orange or encountering something unexpected. Despite all of these difficulties, Jacob still has some positive characteristics.  He has a terrific memory and is able to concentrate on things that he is interested in. Jacob likes to study forensic analysis very much.

The second character is Emma Hunt. She is Jacob’s mom. She works for a newspaper as an advice columnist.  However, in her own life, she has no idea how to deal with Jacob’s condition. The last main character is Theo, Jacob’s younger brother. Although he is younger than Jacob, he always helps his mom to take care of his brother.

In the story, Jacob is suspected of being involved in a murder. Because Jacob is super interested in forensic analysis, he often breaks into crime scenes to investigate crimes and helps the police to solve cases. However, in this case, he is suspected of being the killer not only because he knew too many details about the crime but also because he behaves strangely. His Asperger’s Syndrome causes some unusual behaviors, like avoiding eye contact, and that makes people think he is guilty. Hence, a trial is opened to figure out whether Jacob is responsible for the crime or not.

Asperger’s Syndrome is the focal-point of the book. This book shows how this syndrome influences people, giving us a better understanding of the condition. Fearing eye contact, being unable to read social cues, easily losing control and needing to live by a fix schedule are characteristics that most “Aspies” have. These characteristics are often misunderstood because Asperger’s Syndrome is not widely known by society. If a person has Asperger’s Syndrome, how can we fairly judge if he/she is responsible for something or not? It is a question worth thinking about.

This book is popular because of its real-life situation. We all might know someone like Jacob. For this reason, the story becomes very realistic and makes Jacob very real to us. Judi Picoult wrote this book because she has a cousin who’s autistic. She saw how her aunt had to take care of her cousin and deal with the meltdowns and the problems while others couldn’t understand what was happening. That made Judi think about how the legal system works well when you use a certain way to communicate – when you play by the rules, but if you don’t use that way to communicate, everything just might go wrong.

“House Rules” gives us more insight into the lives of those who are afflicted with unusual conditions, and helps us to see the world through their eyes. If you know someone like Jacob, don’t hesitate to read this book; it will help you understand your friend better. On the other hand, if you don’t know anyone like Jacob, you can still read this book and learn something about Asperger’s Syndrome. Then, the next time you meet someone like Jacob, you won’t be surprised.

Mak & May II - Restaurant Review

                                                Vera Hsu & Kevin Chang

Bessie’s Kitchen MAK & MAY II is located just outside Feng Chia University’s Wenhua Road gate, so it is a really convenient place for lunch or dinner.  More importantly, the food is good and the price is right - about NT$90 for a meal.

All photos by the authors
Mak & May II is easy to find – just look for the simple black and white sign. After you go in, you will see that the decoration is simple, too.  The chairs are a bit old, and the lighting is not too bright or too dark. While the decoration is simple, the atmosphere is not – it’s quite “busy.” The music is a bit loud and the conversations of the large lunch crowd are even louder.

Because Mak & May is such a popular place, you might have to wait a few minutes before being seated. The darkly dressed waiters and waitresses are very busy, rushing about taking orders and delivering meals. They look young and passionate. When guests order meals, they serve them with a smile. Many set meals are listed on the menu. There are three kinds of meals: soft omelets, au gratin baked dishes, and exotic rice. With your set meal, you also get a glass of green tea or lemon black tea.

Because I didn’t know which meal was most popular, I asked the waitress. She said that the roast chicken omelet with rice and curry chicken rice were the most popular. I ordered the roast chicken omelet with rice. I didn’t have to wait a long time to enjoy my lunch. The roast chicken tasted soft and juicy. The omelet covering the rice had a smooth texture. I felt the rice was a little hard, but the French fries were good and crisp. Also, a sauce that tasted like salad dressing was provided with my meal. Dipped in this sauce, the roast chicken and French fries tasted a little sweet and refreshing. Although the meal was delicious, I did not finish everything. My waitress politely boxed the leftovers for me to take home.

I recommend Bessie’s Kitchen MAK & MAY II. They offer a variety of meals, they treat guests well, the food is tasty, and the prices are reasonable. Finally, it’s a good place to get together with friends or family.

Bessie’s Kitchen MAK & MAY II
133-2 Wenhua Street, Situn District, Taichung
Hours: 11:00 – 12:00 Daily

Ilan - It's Not What You Think

Rachel Hsu
Most people have the impression that Ilan is just a lot of magnificent mountains, a wide plain, and a lot of undeveloped countryside. However, they have to change their opinion! Nowadays, Ilan has many scenic spots, recreational farms and beautiful coastline views. There are too many attractions to talk about here, so we’re going to recommend two spots to you – the National Center for Traditional Arts and the Lotong night market.

All photos by the author
The National Center for Traditional Arts is a really big place. Inside, there is the Exhibition Center, a performance stage and many traditional buildings. The Exhibition Center regularly holds different exhibitions and activities. They regularly hold performances that show many times a day. These performances use interesting and entertaining ways to present traditional Chinese stories. Spectators always have a good time at these performances. The Center also has special exhibits and performances. For example, during Chinese New Year, they exhibit paper-cut works, and you also can get Spring Festival couplets for free!

If you are hungry, there are also many snack bars at the Center. You can choose rice, noodles, or dumplings for lunch. The traditional buildings at the Center house many stores that sell many kinds of traditional goods. In these stores, you can see many toys and candies from your childhood. They also offer free activities for tourists, like whipping tops and archery. It is exciting! Before you leave, don’t forget to go to the souvenir store to buy some postcards to send your friends and family!  

After walking all day in the National Center for Traditional Arts, you will certainly be very hungry. After you leave the Center, you can go to the next destination – the Lotong night market. At this night market, you can eat all the famous Ilan cuisine including mutton soup (羊肉湯), heart tapioca(包心粉圓), tang hu lu (糖葫蘆), bu meat(卜肉) and gao jha (糕渣). These are all popular foods here and you never see them in other night markets. If you have a big appetite, of course, you can try all of them. However, if you eat like a bird, I recommend that you at least try the mutton soup and heart tapioca. The soup is dainty and the mutton is very tender! This is a very popular dish, so you might have to wait in a long line – but it’s worth it! “Heart tapioca” is tapioca balls mixed with ice cream. When the ice cream melts, it mixes with the hot tapioca. I know it sounds strange, but it’s just like it has a magic power. You can’t put down your spoon!

Lotong night market is a delicacy paradise. Whatever special dish you want to eat, you can find it here. The National Center for Traditional Arts has wonderful exhibitions and performances, exciting games, and interesting stores. Even if you don’t go anywhere else in Ilan, just these two places will fill a wonderful day. Next time, if your friends want to travel to Ilan, don’t forget to recommend theses spots to them!           

A Day in Donshi Park

Anfisa Kuznetsova

A day spent with friends in the park can draw people closer to each other. My schoolmates and I wanted to get to know each other better, so last weekend we decided to spend a day together in Donshi Park near Taichung City. We planned a number of activities.
All photos by the author
We wanted to have fun and play some games together. First, we divided into two teams of five people each. Then, we competed in six different activities: climbing, swinging, running, sliding, jumping, and hiking. Climbing, running, and jumping were not only fun, but also great exercise. Because it was a close contest, we pushed our teammates to try harder on the swinging and sliding.

After our morning activities, we went to lunch together. We had delicious food made from local products. One of our favorite dishes was steamed mountain vegetables. Another one was chicken raised in the mountains. Both dishes were very juicy and delicious. We ate and shared funny stories about our lives. After lunch we planned our hiking routes and agreed where to take pictures as proof that both teams had finished their route.
Finally it was time to go hiking. We walked into the forest. It was an amazing experience to walk in the forest. There were many maple trees and tropical plants all around. We took pictures along our route in order to show the second team where we had passed. When we had come to the end of our routes we stopped at the Hot Spring to take a rest. We all put our feet onto the hot water; it was not only relaxing after our long walk, but it was also good for our skin.

Everyone had a great day in Donshi Park. I got to know my schoolmates better while playing, eating, and hiking together. If you want to know your schoolmates better too, spend a day together with them outside the city!

For Farm Burger - Restaurant Review

Clair Lin & Lynn Hsieh

When most people think of burgers, they often think of American style hamburger. If you are sick of American hamburgers, you can try a Japanese style hamburger at For Farm Burger. This cute little burger shop is located on Meichun Road close to the SOGO department store.  They are open 11:30 – 21:30, and the price of the average meal is about NT$180.

When we got to For Farm Burger, we were surprised to see that it looked like an old house. The decoration and the building materials are all done in earth colors, and the tables and chairs are wood. They play country music, which was very relaxing.  The music and the warm and soft light helped us leave all of our troubles behind.

All photos by the authors
The menu at For Farm Burger has two different items - burgers and pancakes. They have many kinds of burgers – beef, chicken, shrimp, pork, fish, and tofu. The most special one is the tofu burger because it’s traditional Japanese style and the flavor is unique. The waiter told us that the most popular burger is the roast chicken. For lunch, for Farm Burger also serves salty pancakes. The most popular salty pancake item is the fried chicken, and the second most popular is the assorted meal – pancakes, fried shrimp, chicken and fries. If you arrive after the lunch hour, you will see that the restaurant offers afternoon tea from 2pm to 4 pm. For afternoon tea, For Farm Burger offers an assortment of sweet pancakes with fruit. 

Clair ordered a sunny-side-up chicken burger. When the waiter brought her meal, Clair felt surprised and couldn’t wait to enjoy it. The lovely sunny-side-up egg caught her attention, and underneath it was juicy roast chicken meat with lettuce. When she bit off a piece of the burger, chicken, bread, soft egg and lettuce filled her mouth. It tasted sweet and a little spicy because of the special sauce. The mysterious sauce was the key to making the hamburger taste like heaven. Clair’s burger came with fried potatoes, which were crispy and delicious.

Lynn ordered a salty pancake with cheese with meat sauce. The pancake consisted of two pancakes, bacon, fresh vegetables and meat sauce. The pancake was very rich and satisfying. Lynn chose different garnishes to go with her pancake. Everything was warm, fresh, and delicious.

Our experience at For Farm Burger was really relaxing; we felt just like we were at home enjoying a meal with a good friend. When you come to For Farm Burgers, don’t forget to bring a camera because the decoration and the food are very attractive. This restaurant is always filled with people, so you might want to make a reservation. We know that you’ll enjoy For Farm Burger just as much as we did!

For Farm Burger
No. 1, Lane 102, Meichun Road, Taichung City  
Lunch: 11:30 – 14:00  Afternoon tea: 14:00 – 17:00 
Dinner: 17:00 – 21:30 (20:00 last order)
Phone: 04- 23272782

Westlife - Music Review

Sunny Wu

Recently, my friends introduced a beautiful song to me.  It was sung by Westlife. As soon as I had heard the song, I liked it very much. Since then, I have always followed news about Westlife. When their albums were released, they were always at the top of the popular music list. Unfortunately, however, Westlife broke up this year.

Westlife came from Ireland, and there were five boys in the group. Before they formed Westlife, they were all in different singing groups. Westlife’s songs are almost all about love and inspiration, and their style is slow R&B. They released the first song, “Swear It Again,” in 1993, and it was a hit on the UK and Ireland musical charts for two weeks. After one year, their second album was released, and the album was the biggest selling in UK. In 2003, Brian left the group because he wanted to spend more time making his own music and spending time with his family.

After Brian left, they almost broke up. However, they overcame their problems.  In 2005, they released a new album. They went on a concert tour in Asia and Australia. They announced that it would be their last world concert tour because they were going to break up. They felt tired after 14 years, so they believed this concert would be a good ending to their career. Finally, they released their last album so that their fans would have something to remember them by.

Their biggest selling songs were “You Raised Me Up” and “If I Let You Go.” I like their harmonies. If you are bored listening to rap and dance songs, you may listen to some songs by Westlife. Their songs will help you relax after a long day studying.  (Music video (c) Sony Music via YouTube)

Business Plan Contest 2012

Chelsea Ho & Connie Hong
Each year, the FCU Entrepreneurship Education and Development Center sponsors the Feng Chia Business District Entrepreneurship Competition. The winner of the competition wins NT$30,000, a trophy, and three months of rent-free shop space in the Feng Chia Shopping District where they can sell their product.  Last year’s winner sold handmade sock dolls. She won the competition because her products were creative and because they were popular in the female market. This year’s winner has will not be chosen until the end of March.

People who would like to participate in this competition should organize a group. In each group, more than half of the members must be college students. The competition is separated into two types – real shops and online shops. Feng Chia university teachers and members of the Feng Chia Shopping District Association are the competition judges.

Photos courtesy of FCU College of Business

How do the participants prepare for the Feng Chia District Entrepreneurship Competition? The leader of each group registers to participate and submits the group’s business plan to the FCU Entrepreneurship Education and Development Center for the preliminary competition. Participants who are successful in the preliminary competition then attend training camp for competitors.  This year, the camp was held on February 18. The main activity in this year’s competition camp was a class on writing business plans. Participants learned how to write a more perfect business plan. During the camp, many successful entrepreneurs also shared their experiences with the participants. Before the final competition, each group had to send a more detailed business plan to the FCU Entrepreneurship Education and Development Center and prepare a poster and a presentation.

This year’s final competition will be held on March 24 (Saturday). Many teams will exhibit their products. Participants will grade each other, and the competition judges will also grade each team. If you are interested, come visit the exhibition and see which group’s product you think will win.  The exhibit will be held in FCU’s Jung Chin Building, Room B-1 from 10:00 to 16:00; the winners will be announced at the conclusion of the exhibition.

Scooting Around Taiwan

Ray Yen

This past summer vacation, I kept my promise to myself that I would take a trip around Taiwan. This was my first time to take such a special trip. I enjoyed myself very much and learned a lot from the trip.

All photos by the author
One reason I made this trip was because my friend, David, had invited me to join him and his brother on the trip; the other reason is that I just wanted to travel and have a special experience. Our journey would be a long one; it would take us 6 days to travel the 1000km route.

Of course, we had to plan for our trip. We made sure that our scooters were in good condition (David and his brother rode together) and that we had enough money and clothing.  We started in Taichung and went south. We had to ride the county roads and provincial roads since our scooters were too small for the highways. Our route took us by many famous eateries, and we stopped often to eat and rest.

It was not an easy job to complete the trip. We had to face two big challenges. First, distance and time are big problems. We wanted to finish our journey in six days, but we had to ride more than 1000km. We rode only when it was light out, so there was not much time to ride each day and we had to ride fast.  Therefore, it was pretty dangerous sometimes, and that was the second challenge, safety. It was easy to get tired riding so long, so we needed to get enough sleep each night. With enough sleep, we could concentrate more easily. Moreover, we had to eat lots of delicious food to keep up our strength!

Although we did a lot of preparation before we started, I still had some big problems. My scooter broke down in Taitung. I was riding slowly on the mountain road because I was blocked by a bus. Then I decide to pass the bus. In order to pass the bus, I had to ride faster. Just as I passed the bus, my engine suddenly stopped. It was an extremely dangerous situation. Fortunately, I was still going fast enough to pull over to the roadside safely; otherwise, I would have been hit by the bus. I pushed my scooter down the road, worrying about whether I would be able to complete the trip. Luckily, I found a scooter repair shop. After fixing my scooter, we continued on our way.

There was one other problem waiting for me in Hualien. When I got up on Sunday morning, my scooter wouldn’t start. My friends continued the trip, but I had to stay one more night at the Youth Hotel because I couldn’t find a repair shop. I was not lonely there, however. I met some new friends. They were from Taiwan, China and Finland. They told me their stories and why they wanted to travel. We really had a good time.

The last challenge for me was to continue alone on my trip. I needed to study a map because there was no one to guide me. That night, I went to bed early. I woke up at 4:00 a.m. and said goodbye to the hotel. I rode crazily and fast. I checked my map and asked people many times for directions. I rode so fast that I didn’t have much time to appreciate the beautiful scenery. I got on the road in the darkness and rode until sunset. I definitely never want to have the experience of riding so fast and passing so many cars on such dangerous mountain roads again. Soon, I caught up with my friends in Keelung. I was glad that I would not be alone for the rest of the trip. Finally, we arrived back in Taichung and completed our trip.

Although I had many problems during the trip, I still enjoyed the whole trip. In the beginning, I didn’t hesitate; I just made up my mind to join the trip. Although there were some problems, I never gave up. It was important to think of solutions and try to solve my problems. I not only enjoyed the journey, but also learned an important lesson – just do it and never give up.

Get Wet, Be Cool!

Jack Lin

When summer comes, you are probably unwilling to do outdoor activities because the weather is too hot. However, you just might change your mind after reading this article because there is one sport you may not have thought of – swimming.

There are many advantages to going swimming. Swimming keeps you healthy and cool in the heat, but the most important benefit is that you will not get injured doing this exercise. Because you are an FCU student, it’s convenient to go swimming because there is a swimming pool on campus. Also, you should feel motivated to learn because you have to pass a swimming test before you graduate!

Photo courtesy FCU
There are a number of places you can go to learn how to swim well. You can go to the physical Education class, and the teacher will teach you; or you can go swimming with a friend who has already learned how. After increasing your confidence, you can go to a water park like Yueh-mei to have fun. When you think you are good enough at swimming, you also can go to the beach. However, that’s probably not a good idea because it’s really dangerous. Swimming is a good, healthy sport. Once you overcome your fear of the water, you will have a lot of fun.

It’s not too late to learn how to swim. If you want a sport that will keep you healthy but not injure you, and that will keep you cool in the heat, go to the swimming pool and learn to swim – and enjoy the hot days of summer!

Xiang Thai Duo - Restaurant Review

Zoe Hung & Marian Li

Lots of people have poor appetites when the weather gets hot. Thai food is a good choice when this happens because it is sour and spicy, which can stimulate your appetite. We have discovered a nice Thai food restaurant, Xiang Thai Duo, on Fu Shang Alley.

When we arrived at Xiang Thai Duo restaurant, we thought it was just like being at home. Because of the large French windows, it was very bright in the restaurant. The walls were white and green with photos of restaurant owner’s dog hung in many spots. The dog’s name is Wang Zi. It is cute, and most customers like looking at the photos. We enjoyed the quiet relaxing atmosphere and chatted with friends. The restaurant felt very nice and it was very clean.

All photos by the authors
There are plenty of dishes on the Xiang Thai Duo menu. We ordered five dishes. The first dish was squid salad. The squid was chewy and soft. It tasted sour and spicy. If you are afraid of eating spicy food, you should tell a waitress you want “medium hot” when you order. The steamed lemon fish was sour, too. The fish melted in our mouths. The spicy pork stir-fry was a heavier dish, so it went well with the rice. The roast chicken with lemon sauce also went well with rice, but it was not so heavy. The meat was juicy and tender on the inside and crisp on the outside. To balance our meal, we needed a vegetable. The spicy fried greens with shrimp paste was crunchy and fresh; however, it tasted a little bit fishy. Finally, the rice. If you love rice, you can have as much as you want because it’s free!

Even though the rice is free, the dishes on the menu are not.  However, they are not expensive. We enjoyed our meal without worrying about the cost. We spent less then NT$200 each, so we think students can afford this wonderful cuisine. Each dish serves three to four people. If you go there with a lot of friends, you can order a combo meal. If you are still hungry, you can order additional dishes. Good atmosphere, delicious dishes, and low prices; Xiang Thai Duo is a perfect choice for students.

Xiang Thai Duo Thai Restaurant
270 Fushang Lane, Xitun District, Taichung
11:00 – 14:30; 17:00 – 21:30 (closed Mondays)