Thursday, October 8, 2009


This is, without a doubt, the most difficult thing I've ever done in my life. I think by next October I'll feel invincible. I'm not being paid until the 20th, but they've heavily hinted that I should be spending huge portions of the day doing things totally unrelated to my job (teacher). You know, instead of acclimating to the 16-hour time difference or finding my way around town through the maze of funny characters. I practiced a very assertive speech in front of the mirror yesterday and delivered it earlier today, to what seemed like a receptive audience. I was really hoping they would put me on the payroll but they've decided to just have me wait until the 20th to begin. There are so many people with such limited English that are involved in every conversation. The confusion snowballs.

Korean words are unbearably long. I can't even land on familiar syllables when hearing place names. My friend, Steven, tells me to avoid a certain part of Seoul or to beware if I see a type of "massage" listed, and the word for it is gone before I've even registered it. "Gam-Sah, Ham-Nee-Da," I parrot to everyone and feel like the reverse caricature of the Asian who can only say, "Hello! howareyou! bye-bye!"


  1. you won't believe how this journey will change your life. hang in there, before you know it, you'll be prancing around the streets like a pro.

  2. You have lived in three countries in less than a year! Go you!

  3. I don't even know what street I live on, so any wrong turns feel like an entirely new kind of 'lost'. I do feel a little prancier every day, though.