Thursday, June 19, 2008

Here it goes!

Photo Boothing in Seoul

Laine and I
Changdeokgung Palace
Korean Bbq: JP, Yerin, myself, Eugene

Red Mango

College Street
I love doors
Changdeokgung Palace

Jerry and I

Inside the Palace

It's 6:20pm. I'm sitting outside the Seven Monkeys coffee shop in Yeokasm, my hood. It's rush hour and bustling here in the financial district. My blonde locks, bright red tee and ripped jeans are drawing an undue  amount of attention amid the black suits and pencil skirts. It's sunny, and slightly breezy.

So sorry I have been negligent with my blogging responsibilities! Much has happened since my last post and I will do my best to include even the most inconsequential details.

As it stands, I have 5 days left with my current students. I have twenty kids in each my writing and reading class, and they have, to my surprise, made quite an impact on me. I truly care for each one of them and hope they stay in touch with me as they begin to take over the world. Last Friday we took a second practice SAT and some of my kids improved 120 points from the first test they took two weeks prior. I'm so proud of them, and it's nice to see that my efforts have not been in vain. What a beautiful process it has been, both to see them grow, as well as to see myself really turn into an "adult".  

I'm more physically and mentally exhausted than I can ever remember feeling.

Next month my tentative schedule has me teaching reading again from 8:30-1:10, then writing from 2:10-4:25, then biology from 4:30-6:50. Teaching that many hours, and prepping for more material than my current load, is going to make me mental... I can't wait.

Ok, so down to the good stuff. Last Friday night I went to the Noreabang with a group of twenty teachers. Norebang is a private room where you sing (or "practice") karaoke (Koreans take this very seriously). The room was enormous, and as a group we paid an obscene amount of money in exchange for a few hours of karaoke and all the food and Soju we could put down our pieholes. So fun!

The following day I rested, did a lot of preparation, and after an early dinner with some friends, hit the sack early. On Sunday, a group of teachers and I went to the Changdeokgung Palace, now a Unesco World Heritage site, that was built in 1405 for the Kings of the Joseon Dynasty. Afterward, we ate Korean Bbq, and then walked around  College Street which is the former location of Seoul University.  We watched a street performer, had paht bing soo, which is the current dessert trend in Korea. It's a combination of frozen yogurt, shaved ice, fruit toppings, tapioca balls, and red bean paste. SO AWESOME! Afterward, Yerin (my roomie), Eugene and I went to a photo booth and took ridonculous photos while dressed in costume. I'm not sure the Korean name, but like the ice cream, it's a huge fad in Korea at the moment. I'll post a picture of the pictures...

On Tuesday night, Eugene and I went to Itaewon which is essentially the United States of Seoul. It's the home of the US Army barracks, so the whole town is filled with military men and women, and an obscene amount of restaurants/bars/and shops that appeal to American taste. The restaurants even have tax (NOWHERE in Korea has tax!). I felt uncomfortably at home. While it was bizarre to hear so much english and pay american prices, it was oh-so-incredible to eat roasted vegetables, salmon croquettes, and a salad with mandarins and artichokes after having only eaten pork and fermented cabbage for the last month. 

The monsoon season is starting!

Tanner has put a package in the post for me and I'm eagerly awaiting his correspondence. I have requested a trashy gossip magazine for each Laine and I, and I fully intend on bringing it to my local nail salon when I get my first paycheck. I've never felt so deserving of some self indulgence....

I must go! Big Friday tomorrow, and I need to grab bipimbap with Laine and Jerry and then plan a Jeopardy game for my class, they deserve to have their Friday spiced up.... Enjoy the photos!

Tanner, I love you! I do everyone who loves me enough to read my blog :)


Tanner said...

so good, baby! you look wonderful, and your friends sound great! sweet palace, too...

Elyse said...

yay!!! pictures galore!

the fro yo looks amazing!
will you mail me some? thanks.

Corinne said...

I want some of that fro yo, too!!
It sounds so fantastic/exhilerating so far!

Liv said...

come over and get some! my treat :)

Marah said...

OMG! YOu just had an explosion of posts and I'm SO far behind. I need to catch up but at first glance, looks like you're still rockin over there! Miss you wom

Payam said...

Hey Liv,

Got to check this email after awhile and great hearing from you :O)

Nice pictures and glad to see you are having a blast there and meeting lots of fun people.

I think I might have to take u on that offer and come over too!

Have a Fannnnnnntastic time & have fun Chillin there girl.

U Rock