I get many emails and posts on my FB regarding how I like Korea and if I am still happy to be here. The answere is, "Yes, I am still happy to be here and I like Korea very much". Are there things that annoy me aobut living abroad? Sure! I mean, I desperately miss my boys and my friends and family back home, I have to go to Seoul to get decent Mexican food, and I don't know the language all that well, but I manage. I truly believe the good outweighs the bad. Everyday is new adventure. I see new things, meet new people from all over the world and try foods I would have never tried back home. I am more tolerant of people and their cultural differences and I am more open to learning about new things. I love the USA, but also realize we are not the be all, end all to everything and we do not have all the answers. It is interesting to see and hear what people think of Americans and at times frustrating because they view us as arrogant and condescending as a whole. Being away from America enables me to see why they feel this way and understand a little as to why they feel this way. I try to make a good impression of Americans and behave in a way that would make my country proud and bring honor to those I love. Sometimes it is hard because of what the rest of the world sees on the news everyday. All I can do is do my best and hope it is good enough.
The weather is cold here now. Winter is in full swing and you all know how I hate cold weather. I still ride my scooter to work, but look like an eskimo! lol I am finding myself eating rice quite often, but have not yet developed a tast for kimchi and highly doubt I will. I have managed to get a small grasp on the language and understand much more than I can speak. I do, however, manage to get my point across and usually get what I need.
I am becoming accustomed to cooking for one, but don't like doing it. I have made many friends and we get together often. For Christmas, there were 11 of us who gathered for dinner and had a representation of six countries. It was truly an international Christmas complete with turkey, chicken, stuffing, potatoes, squash, etc. Delicious!
For Thanksgiving, I was feeling quite homesick and my Korean co-teachers noticed. They took me out for a meal after work to make me feel welcome and a little less homesick. It was very sweet of them and was much appreciated. They were blown away when I took Christmas presents to work on Christmas Eve. They had no idea that I would get them anything. Granted, it was only homemade goodies, but they loved it all.
Korean people are very kind. I am treated well here and can usually get the help I need. I have managed to figure out the bus system and am able to travel often. I even bought some ski pants so I can go skiing...something I have never done.
So, my friends, yes, I am still happy in Korea. Though I have my days of sadness and homesickness and long for a delicious, hot, cheezy, yummy burrito, I know I only have eight short months left before I must decide where I will spend my next year. Until then, I will keep looking for new adventures around every corner and living life to the fullest.