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Annyeong haseyo!

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May. 23rd, 2011 | 09:22 pm

I'm much too lazy to compose actual entries about the last six months. Let's just think of this as Korea's metadata:

Long and mostly clandestine application process, a trip to Peoria, getting ready to leave, crying on the train to the airport, 14 hour plane ride, Incheon Airport, mountains EVERYWHERE, my students thinking I'm a goddamn rock star, separation anxiety followed separation appreciation, emotional and creative deadness in winter and awakening in the spring, Japan trip (Shibuya, Shinjuku, Akihabara, Japan Rail, Kyoto, being certain that I could live in Kyoto forever and be content, forests in the middle of the city, religious moments at Riyoanji, lost at Fushimi Inari), trying failingly to learn and use Korean, Seoul, car trips with Ms. Choi, "Homesick" playing and neon Korea rolling by, train trips to Daejeon and a boy named Darryn, the science museum, my perennial bad moods, expo park, Lotte World, Seoul Land with my students (who I love but don't really enjoy teaching), the Janggi rebel crew, Expat Thanksgiving and Christmas, friendships of convenience, drunkenness for the first time, soju, Korean barbecue, Gyeongju (Bulguksa, Seokguram, Buddha of Compassion, who feels the pain of everyone), climbing a goddamn mountain (Dobongsan, Namsan in gyeongju (and Seoul)), Itaewon, Hongdae, Jongno, disposable income, jimjilbangs, late night noraebang, rocking out without self-consciousness, D&D, Gwangwhamun lit up, Chagall, the lantern festival, walking with the parade, bonding with Koreans really easily (for some damn reason), increased confidence, "All I need to hear is that you're not mine," "I'm about to see a million things I thought I'd never see before," the 8600 all the way to Si-Chang windows open and cool night air, a budding love affair with airports, missing home, increased resolve, Man's Search for Meaning, Gimpo, Munsusan fog, flooded glimmering rice paddies, the hills near my apartment, Gangwha-do, Aegibong, moaning over pitures, Grandpa Ken, Grandma Phyllis, Kevin and Dominic, being satisfied by the smallest things, cherry blossoms at Yeouido, Sejong, pilgrimages to Taco Bell, guys back home, strange dreams, being an ethnic minority.

That's a lot already, and there's lots more, but I'll stop for now.

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