Daily Life in Korea 45

My students told me they thought I could be 42 or 7 years old.  Other guesses included 21, 25, and 29.

They also told me about their favorite handsome Korean celebrities.  And that they watch 19+ videos even though they are elementary students and 6th graders.  And Lady Gaga videos-which are disturbing ordinarily but especially strange to a country where 18-25 year old women still wear pastels and talk like babies, and the group you belong to defines you more than personal characteristics.  You never have to figure out who ‘you’ are in Asia.

All in all, glad it is another Friday and I can escape the crazy on the weekend.

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Daily Life in Korea 43

You know it’s spring because every classroom has a wasp.  Yes, even the 4th floor windows open sideways and have no screens.  So things can just fly right in or out.  All the students would point out the wasp or as they like to call it, the “bee” and both would be promptly ignored by the Korean teachers.  And no one got stung (yet), so I am sure it’s all fine.  After all, this isn’t America where people have allergies to bee stings and take that very seriously.

Also, my co-teacher seemed to give the 3rd graders a coloring lesson, I think.  She drew a balloon on the white board and drew lines on it.  Coloring properly is essential for an English education.

One of my students told the class her birthday was August 23rd.  Yeah, I think I might hate her.  She wears glasses and has straight black hair and is Korean too.

One student said his birthday was September 24th.  There was some minor misunderstanding about that being Christmas eve.  It isn’t, in case you wondered.

Also, books are expensive to mail internationally because they are heavy.

And pizza makes me feel sick.  After eating … which might make me feel sick at the smell of pizza in the future.  Could be a hard life ahead of me.

But I like shopping at the open market in Nambu.  Except when the snack sales lady gives me extra snacks in my bag and I don’t like them.  It doesn’t feel awesome getting something free if it is something you don’t want.  But I can feed those snacks to my students, they will eat anything.

Daily Life in Korea 42

Sometimes I hear old English songs sung in Korean, for example, while watching the Korean drama Love Rain.

When I can remember the English words, I just think of those known lyrics overtop of the weird, unfamiliar Korean lyrics (which are just an affront to the original song).

But when I can’t remember the original lyrics, but just remember the melody-that is infuriating.

During those moments, all I can think is that I know this is a song I know but that I can’t remember.


Daily Life in Korea 41

There are lots of college-educated, English-speaking foreigners in South Korea.

But there are lots of working class foreigners who need to use Korean with their bosses (read evil overlords).

Those were the kinds of foreigners that were drinking beers outside and hollering to me in Korean.  You know, saying hi to a pretty white woman because regardless of why she is here, she must be easy.

Later, walking back through the same shady neighborhood I live in, a Korean man also spoke to me on the streets.  He said hello.  He might have been drunk.

But I think the difference is interesting that other foreigners hitting on me out on the street might use Korean, expecting me to know it like they do, while Koreans will use English or ask “Russian?” to approach me.

Sigh, but they all think my purpose in life is to sexually serve them.  Asian men can be really gross sometimes.  Like when they greet you on the streets and freely look you over.

Daily Life in Korea 40

Sometimes now when I see pictures of dogs, I think they look delicious.

I called my dog “emergency rations” and that was before I came to Korea.

I think I have just always been Korean.

Except I still won’t eat bundaegi.

Maybe I am not that Korean.

(BTW-I have never actually knowingly consumed dog meat.)

Daily Life in Korea 39

I totally forgot today was Black Day-or a day that single Koreans eat Chinese black bean sauce noodles.

짜장면 or these noodles are pretty yummy and you can usually get them at any Chinese restaurant in Korea and often as a set for two people with a dish like sweet and sour pork to share.

Jjajangmyeon is pretty cheap too-usually only three or four dollars.

But on April 14th, all the singles who didn’t get candy or chocolate on White Day or Valentine’s Day eat Jjajangmyeon on Black Day.

Actually though, every 14th day of each month is a special “holiday” in Korea with some sort of couples’ gimmick going on.  Once I got a rose on Rose Day.  That is May 14th.  It is going to be my last day of work in South Korea.  It is also known as Yellow Day or a day to eat curry.

Who wants to go get some curry for dinner with me?  Or give me a rose? ^.~

Daily Life in Korea 38

North Korea launched a controversial long-range missile in what it said was an attempt to launch a rocket into space.

Regardless, the rocket broke apart after exploding in the air.

You can read up more about this particular incident here.

But everyone knows North Korea is aggressive, anti-social, and usually tries to kill a few South Koreans every year.  Honestly, I have lost track of the count of the number of South Koreans killed by North Korean provocations during the time I have been here.  Floods from dam reservoirs, submarine sinking, and bombings all perpetrated by North Korea have happened within the last three years.