So I arrive in Taipei, Taiwan on September 7th 2015 with no idea if I will actually leave the country with the documents I need. The only reason for flying to Taipei is to get some form of legal documentation that I actually was born! The fact that I exist (have a passport) and pay taxes is not legal proof of my brith! What????
Approaching the immigrations officer in Taipei I have an odd feeling – did I need a visa to enter Taiwan (I know – I checked it a dozen times but still worried), will they see I was born in Taiwan, will they ask a slew of questions to totally confuse me, will I be arrested…… Will they even allow me into the country without legal proof of birth and birth place?
The immigrations officer takes my passport and looks at me . Everyone who has traveled to a foreign country knows the look you get at border control. Passport in hand, the immigrations officer tilts his/her head downward ever so slightly and looks you in the eyes. Sort of as if they have this built in scanner to detect any proof of a lie or falsehood. No matter whether US border, Indonesian immigration or passport control in Taipei. They all have the same way to sort of sum you up. Strip you naked – well kind of.
“Is this your first trip to Taiwan?” the government official asks me.
If I remember correctly I had a blank (maybe stupid) look on my face. How should I answer that? With all the problems that my so called birth certificate has caused, I am very cautious when answering questions posed by any government official in any country on
I am speechless……. to which the immigrations officer only replies after checking the entires in my passport: “Oh, you were born in Taiwan!!”
Thanking all the Gods available to human kind that he never asked the purpose of my
visit, for surely I would have been stopped from entering Taiwan, I take my first step into Taiwan in decades.
Born in Taiwan, left the country (probably illegally considering the status of my birth
certificate) for Hong Kong at the ripe old age of 8 months never to return – or so my parents probably thought and here I was again – almost 50 years later entering my country of birth. Booyah! How many people can actually claim they’ve entered their country of birth with a passport from a completely different country?