International migration has accelerated in recent decades as the world is becoming more connected than ever before. There has been an increase in people moving from their homeland to other countries for various reasons including a change of pace, lifestyle or simply to broaden their horizons. A young lady from Germany decided that she needed to move away from the life she had known in exchange for something completely different.
She packed her bags and moved to East Asia, specifically Taiwan. She did not know anyone from Taiwan except one friend who was generous enough to let her stay with their family for 3 months which should be enough time for Michelle to settle in, get a job and find a place for herself.
Michelle grew up in Germany and her family was not well-to-do. Her parents divorced when she was very young and her mother was left to take care of Michelle and 3 other siblings on her own. Michelle’s father had given up all responsibility of taking care of them and the family was struggling financially.
She started working at the tender age of 12 in order to help ease her family’s financial burden. Michelle delivered newspapers to homes in her neighborhood for some pocket money.
She had visited Taiwan with her friend before and fell in love with the country. The people were completely different from the ones she knew back home in Germany, whereby, Michelle was constantly bullied for being poor and was regularly teased by her classmates.
A desire grew within her to be a part of Taiwan and one day she decided to go for it. She did not want to be treated as a foreigner which is why she did not apply to teach English or German in the state although it would have been lucrative.
Michelle recalled that she was looking for something to eat and came across a road-side stall selling traditional red bean cakes. The owner said they had a vacancy and Michelle decided to take up the job manning the stall.
She said it was the best decision she had ever made because after 3 months she was able to pay her rent and live in relative comfort. She sought a challenge and got her wish, now she is happy doing her job because she gets to sell delicious red bean cakes and chat with the different customers who come by.
Her advice to people who want to follow in her footsteps is to not be afraid of what other people think because they do not live your life. If you want to do something, go for it and don’t let fear hold you back.
Watch her interview below: