Tag Archives: travel

solo trips: the importance of being a hermit…

 

 

I’m crazy busy these days between my teaching contract ending; my part-time editing and content management gig with Anna Wickham, my amazing boss and friend; and I’ve been working on a startup project with a business partner I made in Bali in November. I don’t have time to mess around these days…

It was clear to me at the end of last year that I needed to do something to get myself on track and well-organized for the year ahead. I knew I’d be working a lot and wouldn’t make enough time to push myself to have some legit “me” time.

But I knew it was going to be important for me to exercise some of my hermit tendencies more than ever. So I decided to do my best to find ways to get my shit together and make it happen.

Making It Happen

I’ve gotten better at being by myself over the years. The first time I remember taking a “solo trip” – going somewhere “fun” all alone – was when I was 21. I had a season pass to a local theme park in Branson, Missouri called Silver Dollar City and that day, I was sad.

Continue reading

my fellow Americans… everything you need to know about voting from abroad…

No matter who you are and what your nationality, there’s no question: your Facebook and Twitter feeds have been full of news about the impending American elections to be held in November. Regardless of what side you’re on, you’ve seen stuff from both ends of the pendulum’s swing. This year – perhaps more than ever – Americans’ voices matter when it comes to choosing the next Commander in Chief.

I’ll be honest about this: when I arrived in Korea 3 years ago, I didn’t know I was going to stay this long. I was open to it, sure, but didn’t know it was actually going to happen. I voted in the States before I arrived in Korea in Feb. 2013 and figured that would be it for me for 4 years. Clearly, as I see it now, I was wrong.

I decided a few months ago when I chose to stay one more year (really, this time; this is the last Korean year) that I just wouldn’t bother voting in this election. Even in December, I didn’t like any of the candidates running on either side all that much and anyway, I was going to be in Korea so what did it matter? I wasn’t terribly concerned about figuring out all that absentee stuff. I’ve since changed my mind.

If you’re an American living abroad, I can’t urge you enough to register to vote absentee this year. You might be thinking, “But Krissi, it’s only April. I have plenty of time to worry about this crap.” Well, Reader, I’m here to tell you that you don’t. The longer you wait, the less likely you’ll be to actually do it. Don’t wait; read on and get shit done.

Where Do You Stand?

It’s a scary time in America. The economy seems to be in a bit of an upswing (finally) and everyone has finally made their peace with Obamacare (for the most part). Last year, love finally won and marriage equality is now a real thing and legally recognized everywhere in our great country. We’ve come a long way, people.

But despite the strides we’ve made, we’ve still got a long way to go.

Continue reading

What Are You Doing with Your “Korean” Life?

I wrote this post with the intention of having it published by the Daegu city blog, but after careful consideration, I decided to publish it on my own. 

If you don’t live in Korea, that’s okay. Instead of reading it like you’re in Korea, insert your own life circumstance. It could be your physical geographical location, your job, or whatever you want it to be. But no matter “where” you “are” in your life right now, take a good look at your surroundings and consider what you’re doing with your opportunities. If you’re not happy, where can you make a change?

As we exit the first month of our new year, to me, it always seems as though people (myself included) lose sight of the goals and aspirations we had when we broke into our new calendars. This year, reignite that flame you had. Chase after those dreams you dreamt. Pursue the things that matter most to you.

Make this your year, Reader.

**********

If you’re like me, you love living in Korea. The day I arrived in Seoul, I was scared out of my wits, but I knew I had made the right decision – literally the best decision I’ve ever made in my life.

I decided to come to Korea to teach because I was tired of being in dead-end jobs that I loathed. I have an undergraduate degree in psychology and like so many others of our generation, I realized too late that I didn’t want to work and retire in my chosen industry. So, what did I do instead?

I worked in sales. And I was really good at it. But I effing hated it.

There is nothing in life quite like doing a job you hate. I was always stressed, always sick to my stomach, and I watched as the companies I worked for turned me into someone I wasn’t. I was tired of standing on the sidelines of my life and whispering to myself that there had to be “more out there.” I decided to do something about it.

I came to Korea to teach for a year. And lo and behold, a year has turned into nearly 3.

Continue reading

DMZ adventure photos…

If you missed it, I wrote yesterday about my recent trip up to the South Korean side of the DMZ and my stop back at Seoraksan National Park. If you missed the post, I encourage you to go back and read it.

Due to some uploading difficulties, I wasn’t able to include a photo gallery with the post, but I’m doing it today!

My pics certainly don’t do the place(s) justice; it was truly an incredible experience.

Enjoy!

Continue reading

I saw North Korea… no, really…

I went to the DMZ last weekend with a tour group and it was pretty amazing. If you don’t know what the DMZ is, allow me to explain: DMZ stands for the “Demilitarized Zone.” This is the literal, heavily-guarded line between North and South Korea. And I saw it.

The weekend trip was awesome and overall, totally surreal.

We first went to an area along the border that had previously been closed to the public until 2006, called Dutayeon (두타연) Falls. If you plan to go, you have to actually apply with a tourism office no less than 3 days in advance. They’re that serious about patrolling there.

They’ve cleared the area (mostly) and have made some walking paths through a beautiful section in this range of mountains. To keep track of visitors, though, they make everyone wear a GPS tracker around their neck. North Korea is so nearby that they want to keep close tabs on everyone. Crazy, isn’t it!? So, I wore a GPS tracker.

Dutayeon Falls, Korea

Dutayeon Falls, Korea

Also, there are still live land mines throughout the area. They’ve cleared most of them, but there is barbed wire along all the paths with little warning signs that simply say “Mine.” You DON’T wander from the path unless you have a death wish. Seriously. There are mines out there! It was crazy to fathom.

At one point, I got pretty pissed because this older guy totally ignored the “Mine” sign and just made his own little path down a steep hill. Now, it’s not likely that there were mines in there, especially being that close to the actual path… But seriously. Buddy. DON’T ENDANGER EVERYONE AROUND YOU BECAUSE YOU’RE IMPATIENT. Good gods. We could have all died.

Dutayeon Falls, Korea

Dutayeon Falls, Korea

Continue reading

1 2 6
%d bloggers like this: