Tag Archives: Korea

starting the end off right…

As promised (more to myself than you, Reader… no offense), I’m going to keep tonight’s entry short and sweet.

I made a ton of intentions (because I can never seem to keep up with “goals”) for this year, which you can read about here. Needless to say, I’ve kept up with my usual not getting around to keeping said intentions. While this new list is meant to be completed, chances are, it simply won’t be. I’m just telling you now so you’re not disappointed later.

I’m really bad at this. As I’ve previously made clear, I can’t be trusted with my own goals. Intentions. (Whatever.)

Assume that everything I list here was probably an intention I totally blew. With all that said, and without further ado, here’s what I’d like to accomplish before the end of the year:

  1. Bake that effing cheesecake I’ve been talking about for years. I have cream cheese that’s ready to go and needs to be used, so it’s a win-win.
  2. Run a minimum of 50 miles before Dec. 31.
  3. Write 4 letters a month to people that mean something to me.
  4. Cook once a week (at least) at home. Suck it up, do the dishes, and just make something.
  5. Plan an epic Christmas party for my other expat friends and KBFF. Blog about it (because you know you want to know how it goes!).
  6. Start producing stuff to use for my own business next year.
  7. Redesign A Little Bit Brave (again).
  8. Drink more wine.
  9. Finish NaBloPoMo without missing a single day.
  10. Visit Bali. (It’s happening, Reader, Christmas 2015!)
  11. Participate in a temple stay. Meditate and stuff.
  12. Read 2 books.
  13. Make an appointment at that laser hair removal place on the opposite side of town. (Time’s a-wastin’.)
  14. Wake up no later than 8:30 every morning. Also, be in bed by 12:00 and asleep before 1:00 AM.
  15. Take more photos. A lot more.

That’s it. Well, for now anyway. I’m sure I can think of others, which I’ll add later. Peh. Here’s hoping I can get my shit together and accomplish these. As always, feel free to hold me accountable. (I need you, Reader, more than you know!)

Image via Flickr user johnonolan

Korean animals are weird…

So, not surprisingly, I’m totally late to my own posting party. Are you surprised? Yeah. Me neither.

So, due to my bad habits and a ton of business happenings, I’m not going to write much to you. I’m going to show you something.

Months ago, I talked with a class of girls about how Korean animals, apparently, sound totally different than American animals. Well, at least when humans are speaking for them.

So, we wrote it down:

Korean animal sounds

Korean animal sounds

Let me translate:

Frog: “geh-guhl geh-guhl” (this is weird, because it’s not a true “l” or “r” sound. Saying it as a native English speaker is just downright awkward)

Pig: “ggool ggool” (think a hard “g” sound)

Dog: “mong mong” (dogs so don’t sound like that, RIGHT?!)

Cat: “ya-ohng ya-ohng” (“oh” sound there)

Cow: “um-may um-may” (huh?)

Sheep: “mayyyyyyyy” (not too far off from the American version)

Horse: “hee-hing hee-hing”

And then, to make my point more understandable for you, dear Reader, I recorded us making all the sounds.

 

Notice how adorable all of them are. I’m sad that I no longer have a single one of them in class anymore. They’ve moved on to bigger and better things (or just a higher level, but whatever).

I think the difference in horse sounds was their favorite; we often say “neigh” for horses in the Americas, which literally translated here (Korean spelling is 네) would be an agreement. So horses in America must be very agreeable… Or so I’ve come to assume.

This is just one of the many things I’ve noticed that are remarkably different in Korea. Many things I’ve come to accept as “normal” and it wasn’t until coming home to the Americas this year that I remembered that they’re, well, not the norm to Americans.

More on that later.

But anyway, enjoy the adorable children and the strange sounds their animals make. Happy Friday, Reader. And an even happier weekend to you!

 

a little bit brave… and uncertain

Reader, I’m so excited to share the next installment of the “A Little Bit Brave” series.

Each month, I’ll be posting an article by another blogger who took a leap and moved themselves away from everything that was familiar to find the next “right” step in her life. You can read more of the series here.

So, without further ado, here’s a little bit brave… and uncertain. Enjoy. :)

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At 27 years old, I had finally decided it was time to test my wings. Like a free-spirited bird, I jumped from my nest with hopeful abandon. I spread my wings wide to the open sky and embraced the tickle of the wind in my feathers. And then I plummeted straight to earth.

At 26, life had been pretty comfy-cozy. I thought I had finally made it. I had the job, the car, the downtown apartment, and the professional wardrobe of my poor girl dreams. I had the PTO and the 401(k) and the HSA. I had the friends and the family and the kind of coworkers you actually look forward to seeing every day. I thought I had it all.

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So why did I feel like I was suffocating in a glass coffin every night as I lay in bed? Why did I want to scream and pound my fists against those imaginary walls as I tried not to cry myself to sleep? Why did I feel like everyone was skipping around outside my prison while I lay buried alive?

Perhaps I needed therapy, but all the psychobabble in the world wouldn’t have been able to tell me more than I already knew. I was simply afraid. It was fear that put me to bed every night and lingered with me as I went to work every morning. It was fear that made me dread waking up thirty years later only to realize I was still going to work every morning. It was fear that kept me wondering if I would hit retirement only to regret all the years I had worked to save for it.

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I spent eleventy-five hours on a bus… and it was worth it…

Sometimes I do semi-cool stuff in Korea. And then, like the forgetful person I am, Reader, I forget to tell you about it.

For example, I still haven’t told you all about my cool, overnight journey to Gyeongju – the nation’s capital for nearly 1,000 years during the Silla dynasty and, as a result, is home to tons of tombs for the reigning kings of the time. I’m still not going to tell you about it today because I have a more recent story to tell. Don’t worry – I’ll get around to that one eventually.

A few weeks ago, I went to zip line in the Han River valley and trekked a bit in Seoraksan National Park. Unfortunately, it rained on hiking day, so my friend and I didn’t get into the park very far. (Hiking in the rain totally sucks, dude, and I’m not about to be soaked on a four-hour return bus ride.) Despite the short hike, it was still incredibly beautiful and none of my photos do it justice.

On the first day, we took a bus from Seoul for about 4.5 hours… Getting out of Seoul (or into Seoul, for that matter) is always a pain in the ass. Traffic is THE WORST. Our giant greyhound-esque bus nearly blew out two tires trying to make up time trekking up onto the mountain where the zip line was. After a less-than exciting fast food lunch, some lounging around to digest, and then a long wait in line, we finally made our way down the longest zip line in Korea.

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I’m a quitter and I don’t care…

So, Reader. As you know, I’ve been busy. Very busy. (I swear, this is becoming the most ridiculous excuse for not posting because it’s one of only two that I give – the other being laziness.) I was doing regular work. And taking a Korean class twice a week. And I started blogging somewhat more consistently for my city gig, Colorful Daegu.

And then I decided, after reading some things and having some short exchanges with my friend, Anna (who wrote an awesome guest post on this blog that you can read here), that I wanted to start making more time for writing on this blog. Plus, I got accepted to write again for the city blog – another year with them – and I want to really take it more seriously this time… And I want to basically run a business. This takes time, effort, and a shit-ton of research, Reader. And I didn’t have that kind of time between my day job and Korean class and being lazy and trying to exercise and remaining social… You know, so, something had to go.

So I quit Korean class just a week and a half before it was set to end.

Cutting class never felt so good and so bad all at the same time.

I felt good because I kept thinking, “My heart isn’t in it right now. I don’t want to be there. I’m not interested in doing the homework or truly studying. So, why force myself to do something I’m not enjoying anymore?”

But then I felt guilty because I thought, “I paid for this class – actual money – and there are only three left. What kind of lazy a**hole doesn’t just suck it up and go to the last three classes? Who does that?”

Let me tell you who: ME.

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