Anthony Lui

Transcription of Anthony Lui
Interviewee: Anthony Lui
Interviewer: Christina Xiques
Date: February 4, 2014
Place: Chicago, IL.
Transcriber: Sarah Altinbasak
Total Time: 22:08

Copyright © 2014 Edgewater Historical Society

CX: So Anthony you said you come from Taiwan right?

AL: Yes.

CX: Did you live in a village or a city in Taiwan?

AL: A city.

CX: A city? So, the city that you lived in was that the same city you were born in?

AL: That is correct.

CX: So can you share with us a little bit about your childhood or your family? Some maybe good memories from your early years?

AL: Sure, where I grew up I was going to Taiwan to enrich my *** if you will. I lived in a city which is south of Taiwan. That is second largest city in Taiwan. Kaohsiung.

It is about around five million population but it’s kind of the city itself is *** now. Where I live and grow up it like of on the border.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: So I get to the city as well as not far from the city I can reach to some supper. I can feel something like that. So it probably twenty minutes’ drive I can get there easily. So that gives me a very good mix of where I grew up there.

CX: Ok. Do you have any brothers or sisters?

AL: Yes, so I have total of six brothers and sisters.

CX: Mmm.

AL: Including myself.

CX: Ok.

AL: Would it in the family was two buildings combined. My father’s a business man. So my father was busy. So childhood wise, my mom gives us pretty much. She did everything for us.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: So I spent a lot of time with my siblings, but because of age difference I was youngest one. So I got closer to the other two other ones. So then I play with them as well as going out with other friends to as I said sort of supper where you can have some kind of *** or *** that I guess boys probably would like that more so I got a part too.


CX: Ok, ok. So what made you decide to leave your homeland and come to America?

AL: That’s a pretty good question actually. All that a little bit history that actually my father did a lot of business with Asian countries.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: And not much out of the Virginia. So my father didn’t support me to come in here. But I’m gonna give it a reason is because I believe at the time I came here you ask and I believe right now still that your *** is here, having the most resources if you will.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: And so is a lot of bright people coming in. So I believe that the business world as was the business management you ask me to ***. I wanted for the best. And that’s the reason. Actually my father was telling me to go to Japan. I said, “When I go to U.S. to live in the best.” So that’s why I came here.

CX: Ok. Interesting. Was it difficult getting here?

AL: It was somehow a little bit difficult in terms of the preparation because I came here for my degree in business. So I had to go through taking exams. Preparing those exams, right, before taking them. I have to prepare for my financial support. I also need to get myself ready in terms of what would be next. I can’t just say, “Ok, I’m coming here to study,” even though I get a school. So I had to go all through the process to get to school. Then after that what is my plan. So after all is ready, I still would need to get my parents approval for say. For being in Asian, Chinese culture, it’s a respect and support you would get from your parents. I think this is true to most of family in Taiwan. So, I had the responsibility of my father to support from the beginning but I kind of …

CX: Insisted…

AL: Yeah, I insisted. He then was my… for to… actually, you know, kind of get me out of the idea of coming here. And so I got everything including that I got a school, everything. So then he said, “Ok.” Let me just do it then.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: So that’s the difficult part was getting my parents support. Whereas actually my mom was pretty much open. So that gives me a little bit release there for me to go to the mental process.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: In terms of the support of family especially my parents. All the parts in terms of getting schools was not as hard if you will compared to handling my father’s support.

CX: Uh huh, ok. Do you enjoy it here in America?

AL: Sure, in the large sense it would be yes.

CX: Ok.

AL: And as you interview my wife before, until we met at the school. So one thing that I was say I didn’t a lot for the school. For my peers in school. And actually my original plan was that I would work for two years as an apprentice.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: From there. And then I would go back to pick up my parent’s family as my father would want to retire and as he told me that you probably have to prepare coming back for me.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: But I kind of changed my plan because I got married. My wife also came from another country. And so I to plan somehow different from what I original plan. So I changed the plan and then we, we so we decided to stay here and that’s here now.

CX: Ok.

AL: So sure yes. As long as I am fortunate to have my wife and I have two kids and a lot of friends through all the years that I happen to have.


CX: Lovely. That’s nice. Ok. What has been the biggest change for you since you moved to America?

AL: I think the biggest one for me would be changed my plan. I’m a person that if basically if I promised I would deliver. So, back then if I came here I didn’t promise my father I would go back. It was my old plan, because my father *** from the beginning. So it was my plan that I do two years, I would go back with the experience when I came out from school. But really the biggest one for me [was] going through debate. I didn’t at the time… my wife and I planned to get married so we stay here so move back to Asia. To which other country we came from. But during that time, two years, I was working for one of the largest companies here. We had a kid. So having a kid made a big change to me to think about what I do next for the family. It’s not no longer me. I had to think about my wife and my kid at that time. So with a lot of considerations we decided to stay here. We believe that we have a lot to…. often as soon as we… Of course we saved a lot from U.S. the country. So we believed that if we came from something to the country that it’ll be good for us as for the kids.

CX: Ok, ok. So when did you move to Edgewater?

AL: So, when I finished the when I finished the school I came to Chicago.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: It was too 2001 we moved to Edgewater neighborhood. We were in 2000 living in Lincoln Park. I’m sorry that I’m not so sure that it’s the short drive but I made sure that I yeah, it’s a *** area but I’m sorry. So we moved in 2001when we decided to look around for stay. Instead of renting, we would explore the idea in chances of getting the home [for] ourself. So we were lucky that we only bought two secure homes here. That’s and so maybe its treasure to be ***

CX: What made you choose Edgewater?

AL: We choose here for too many reasons. One, it is not right in the downtown. Let’s see to me, I don’t think it’s like the best area for a family. For singles maybe yes, but for family in my view… we believe that somewhere it would be far from downtown it would be better.

CX: Uh huh

AL: And Edgewater is… because this neighborhood…. Nearby here we have a lot of offers that we need including this and university would be the better but right here and there are a lot of parks by the lake.

CX: Ok.

AL: And our building is right on the lake which is you don’t see a lot of. Especially when it comes to just right by the lake.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: So this is kind of the reason, we can access the lake. We can tend the parks of the lake and further west. We have view parks that are also available for you to access at anytime. At that time we had little kids so we would like to have those. And this neighborhood also offers very accessible to a lot of grocery stores. They have considered quality, that’s where it’s the size, and ours they open. It convenient for us and also really close to the Argyle which is they call it the North Chinatown.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: Whatever you can have already told supermarkets that we buy the necessity or some of the ingredients that we have food they need for our daily lives. So with all these mix that Edgewater really, it’s a really good choice. So again this environment itself. It has a university and be the fact that generally it’s a good environment and two where you can access to a lot of necessities.

CX: Ok ok. Do you feel at home here in Edgewater?

AL: Yes I would put a little bit smaller scope if you will. Insurance would be yes.

CX: What makes you feel at home here as well?

AL: Sure, Edgewater itself we done, we search before actually, we focus on this area most, Rogers Park and Edgewater. We finally picked Edgewater because of the building and the location if you will. So I’m going to focus on the building itself.


CX: Ok.

AL: This building offers a very good communities and that…. You talk to Betty who is on the community members so this building and the associates and the building and community if you will, we look at it like a whole big family. Very friendly. They offer a lot of activities that family including from elderly to young kids. You can… just for example we have even kids committees. There’s committees in halls… some celebrations for some events of the years. Holidays for example. So this really brings out very warm feeling to you that this is a community, this is alike a home for you.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: Before that we knew a little bit but actually when we lived in. We really experienced a high rate of certification that we expected.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: So, we feel really comfortable and we are fortunate to have this, be part of it.

CX: Ok. You were talking about organizations. Are you involved in any type of neighborhood organizations or any Edgewater organizations?

AL: We are not formally… actually myself as well. I am not formally involved with any organizations taking a role.

CX: Ok.

AL: But we actually volunteer in different organizations here. I will say myself because I’ve been busy in terms of taking responsibility for family. I have to work but when I have time we actually with the family too, we go out to volunteer in the neighborhood. Yes. I if there is a chance, I would.

CX: Ok, ok, ok. What is your favorite experience here in Edgewater?

AL: That’s a pretty good question.

CX: Yeah if you can remember.

AL: I would say, when we have the library just built, we go to library a lot.


CX: Uh huh.

AL: The library was just built we went and that experience you know, to me it’s really rewarding. Not just for us - all of us - we use [it] a lot right? But, I believe that the neighborhood would be benefit, so that’s a really good to makes in the community.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: And a lot of part, if you don’t mind, I wanted to bring up the experience, one of really favorite experience is the community open eyes Christmas party here. It brings down almost everybody to the first floor to just social. And you know sometimes you don’t see your neighbors that really often, even throughout our year, because everybody’s busy right? You have your own life.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: But that’s really good setting. It’s really time to social with people and chat with people. So that holiday feeling the season right? You decoration there, and seeing your neighbors that you can’t really talk and social. That’s a another part that I feel just bringing from the neighborhood with the library that I feel really good for the neighborhood to our building that has a smaller community.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: As I do share with you. Event like the holiday celebration is really good.

CX: Ok.

AL: Yes.

CX: Have you faced any problems here in Edgewater?

AL: That’s a tough question. There are problems of course.

CX: Uh huh.

AL: But to be physically is not. So I’m going to address that more other side.

CX: Ok.

AL: It troubles me when I see some people actually neater who throw the trash outside on the streets. We actually just three about two, three blocks from here and I would often times especially summer times it’s easily. Now it’s the snow mixed in. I would see people throw some trashes here or there. That actually bothers me. It’s not a major thing but I would think that people would like to keep their own environment clean and they shouldn’t do that. But you still have people who do that. It bothers me, and another thing is the crime. It’s not of course compared to some other neighborhoods but I… from time to time I do have the concern of someone serious crime actually happen before would it happen again. Unless nobody can do much to that, it just happens right? But it sometimes kind of when some kind of worry to you. When you are walking in the neighborhood.

CX: Right.

AL: So obviously that’s, other than in my experience, this is a really safe, good neighborhood to live in.

CX: Ok. What…..So, how do you feel people in Edgewater treat you generally, maybe in your workplace or wherever? Do you feel they treat you good? Do you get along with people here in Edgewater?


AL: I don’t work in this area. So I would just basically talk about this area in terms of my living part, not working part. I would say from - say where we go to restaurants nearby here, the shopping places, including the park where they offer a lot of activities, my kids going there - I would say people treat everybody fairly, friendly, that’s a short answer. Of course you sometimes run into somebody that is rude, but I would say that 95% friendly.

CX: That’s good, so generally they are friendly.

AL: Yes.

CX: That’s great. What culture do you identify with?

AL: That’s a pretty good question.

CX: Do you feel like you’re an American now?

AL: That’s a really good question. I would say I, ever since when I grow up, I wear a lot of *** people in the work, they are *** of the Americans. Now I’ve been really open, so what I’ve tried to say is the American culture had been there long since I grew up, I would say mix already. So what I want to say is before I have that mix, before I came here, when I came here, I feel a part of it, not so much far from a difference that I could be experienced. But I still have the challenges, as I grew up in the culture, so the heritage is still there. So I would say that I bring to other cultures together. I always believe that we should be *** except they are always something better. We are to open our eyes to see where are the better ones and when we found it, and we can adopt it, so for simple we generally learn to celebrate Thanksgiving, which is it’s a American culture but after we came here we celebrate.. So this is a… I believe this is a heritage, cultural, and so we actually got that. So I would say we actually live the two culture mix together at home. And sometimes if we have a chance, if there’s where come different cultures, diversity as you mention earlier, we try to bring in whatever we have to share.

CX: That’s nice. So knowing what you know about America now, will you would you still have moved here with what you know now?

AL: Would I?
CX: Still move to here to the United States?

AL: I would say yes I it’s been a good experience, of course I ***, that journey, but overall as I said it’s a lot better to be here, yeah.

CX: So that’s it, if you could choose to live anywhere else in the world where would it be?

AL: I would say that depends on the stage of my life. Honestly, because this is a really…. In a different stage, I kind of need different things, right at this point. Edgewater and maybe larger would Chicago would be my first choice. The reason would be the kids. My kids are going to school here and have friends and wherever they have to move at all. So we believe that most of it be official for land in Chicago. So hopefully they will learn to become productive citizens and hopefully if they can do something come here to the country that they would be better now. This…

CX: Ok. So I think were done here, I enjoyed hearing your story, thank you so much for sharing with us, I really appreciate it.

AL: Ok, well thank you for having me.