From Abandonment to Transformation

Nancy Jones beach cot 0324-2“The eventual acceptance of my fate finally set me free – emotionally. My greatest sorrows became my greatest source of inner-peace.”

One Thousand Layers of Water and Clouds: The Tale of A Taiwanese Daughter by Nancy Chen Baldwin

Shui Yun, known later as Nancy, faced an unimaginable childhood. Sold as a chambermaid at the tender age of five, the trauma left an indelible mark on her life. Years later, Nancy embarks on a journey of self-discovery, exploring how this experience shaped her relationships, identity, and sense of self. More than a personal narrative, Nancy’s story becomes a powerful voice for countless women who have faced similar trials. It’s a testament to the human spirit’s remarkable resilience, showcasing its ability to heal and transform even when we remain unaware. This memoir is a powerful reminder that the human spirit has the strength to overcome, and thrive, even in the face of profound adversity.


“”One Thousand Layers of Water and Clouds” is just that, a mystic multi-layered story. In it, we follow Shui Yun (Nancy Chen Baldwin) in her quest for identity, roots, and success. Sold at age 5 for the high price of US$100, she becomes “chambermaid” to a childless Taiwanese woman who later takes her to the US with its competing lifestyles and visions. There, Shui Yun again must come to terms with finding love and survival amidst the Vietnam War era, Civil Rights, Affirmative Action, Reaganomics, and an increasingly prosperous US aerospace industry. Told with brutal honesty and frankness, Shui Yin’s detailed journey is her own detailed journey; yet it also mirrors what many Taiwanese, and other Asians had to face as well. With little gloss, and no major heroes; timing and preparation have their role as well as luck, attitude, and friends; it’s an intriguing quest in an intriguing time.”
Jerome F. Keating PhD. – Taiwan expert, writer, and retired Professor from National Taipei University

Join us on May 31st, 2024, 7:00 PM through 9:00 PM

An Evening of Cultural Exploration: A Conversation with Nancy Chen Baldwin (賴水雲)

“An inspiring book, a portrayal of human spirit that is illustrative of life experiences of many women in East Asia in her era, and perhaps today”
– Susan Demas

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