Haha my how things change quickly – I was just rereading what I wrote last night as I was waiting for Rim to pick me up. Did I mention it’s practically been raining the entire time I’ve been here? I think there’s a hurricane nearby and we’re getting weather associated with that. Last night Rim and I went shopping at a store called E-mart. For those who aren’t familiar (like I wasn’t) think Wal-Mart + Dillard’s, but it’s 8 stories – groceries, shoes, electronics, department store clothing sections, it’s pretty impressive. What I like the most is they have inclined moving sidewalks so people are going up flat escalators with their carts. Going grocery shopping is quite interesting in another country – it feels basically the same, EVERY thing is just in Korean. Things look the same, but you can’t read what they are. You pay a dime to use a cart and when you return it you get the dime back. This is to avoid people stealing the carts.
I chuckled when I read my post from earlier. When Rim mentioned getting a table…I thought American table – round/square with a few chairs to sit on, like a card table, – I learned that you sit on the floor in Korea when eating meals. I now have a table…but one that only high enough above the ground for me to sit Indian - er, Korean style, with my knees under the table. I took pictures of my apartment today and am excited to post them. I am taller than my shower and my fridge and the entire place is probably less than 500 square feet. But, I’m adapting– I’m sleeping well, I feel safe, and I’m even getting used to the warmer temperature and not keeping the air on all the time.
Last night Rim and I didn’t get back from shopping until 10:20. Then, we both were hungry so she invited me to eat with her family. I was a little hesitant since I was tired and haven’t had much of an appetite since I’ve been here, but I didn’t want to be rude and not accept the invitation. Boy oh boy did Rim’s mom cook up a FEAST! I couldn’t believe it…we were sitting on the floor – the entire square table just kept filling up with dishes – salad with a very salty salsa like dressing, kimchi soup (VERY VERY spicy cabbage, pork, and tofu soup), small hard fish which I couldn’t eat, broccoli, cucumbers, pork, eggs, sticky rice, and watermelon for desert. There were a few traditional Korean dishes that I don’t know the name of. I tried a few new things, but was very self conscious since I don’t know how to use chopsticks. They gave me this teeny tiny fork and it limited the foods that I could try. I didn’t eat that much, but did make sure to say thank you, though I don’t think Rim’s parents speak ANY English b/c they haven’t talked to me the times we’ve met.
So that’s a recap of last night. Today was good – I slept until 7am and then kept myself awake hoping to get used to this time zone, I think I felt more tired today than yesterday. Rim and I did get the cable hooked up last night and out of the 78 channels I have – I found 4 or 5 English channels!! One of which is CNN – so I’ll probably be more current on the news now than I ever have been before. Also I watched NCIS, Sex and the City, CSI, it was fun! I had a banana for breakfast and lunch (I’ve eaten a lot of bananas since I’ve been here) and then showered around 12 – and took a nap from 1-1:45. Rim picked me up at 2:15, and I taught classes from 2:30-7:20. I think yesterday I won, but today I think there was 1 class that was difficult because the students were 5 and 6, and another group of students were just terrible. Yelling, hitting each other, throwing paper airplanes at me, haha looking back I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall, but I was getting very agitated. That 50 minute class felt like 4 hours long. I felt like I was being really mean, but there was no way for me to talk slow, enunciate, and try to talk over those that wouldn’t quit talking!
On a more positive note many of the students I had yesterday came in to say hello to me, and asked me if they could bring me anything. One of my students, Dennis, (such a cute little Korean boy! I’ll have to take a picture)proudly walked up and handed me a caramel candy. Small victories. Wrapping up for now!
You know, maybe chairs are overrated!