Casually in Korea

What with all we’re hearing in the news about North Korea and Donald Trump, I figure it’s good to post about the other 99.99% of things going on here in South Korea. 

We just finished celebrating Chuseok, which is like Korean Thanksgiving. All my favorite coffee shops were closed over the weekend so families could reunite across the country. Luckily the woman at the register let me into my favorite grocery store as they were closing up on Thursday so I could grab some veggies. 

Today was Hangul day. Hangul, the Korean alphabet, 한글, has its roots in education equality: King Sejong had it created as a simpler version of Chinese, which was so complicated it made literacy for non-elites hard to achieve. Hangul is really easy to learn (it took me under an hour), you can find lots of resources online!

We have off school tomorrow, which is nice as the Minerva version of midterms is right around the corner. I expect the rest of Seoul start getting busy again tomorrow and the next day, as everybody returns from spending the weekend with their family. 

To celebrate, two friends and I went to a cake shop, Dore Dore, in a hip part of Gangnam. Sugar is not my thing, but they enjoyed guessing which flavors belonged to which layer of the rainbow cake they got!

Life keeps on here in Seoul. I’m so glad to be a part of it. 🙂

10 things you do after getting accepted to an international traveling school…

…when you’re an American. I mean, United State-n. From the United States? You know what I mean. 

  1. Try to stalk your future classmates from the facebook groups, only to be cut short by your inability to read their posts, which are all in a language not English.
  2. Tell your parents they should have taught you several foreign languages as a kid. Promptly ignore your parents reminding you that you were the one who hated language classes and wouldn’t attend any more.
  3. Screen Shot 2017-05-30 at 10.17.48 AM
  4. Look up the costs of getting visas in the 7 countries you’re going to, and realize you’ll reap the rewards and bear the burden of effective/ineffective foreign diplomacy soon enough.
  5. “[I] looked up timezones of the people I started chatting with so I didn’t text them at 3 am for some weird reason… Which, still didn’t stop me when I found something funny.” -Mayzie 
  6. “On Pinterest I found this really cool series of posters… which had customs, common phrases, hand signs, culturally relevant stuff etc. so I got all the ones to where we’re going.” -Vesi
  7. I recall googling drinking ages in the countries we were going to pretty early on…” -Kristin
  8. Cringe cringe cringe at every word that comes out of the Republican primary, election, and presidency of Donald Trump, because you have to look your future classmates in the eyes, 75% of whom are international and don’t understand what’s gotten into the U.S.
  9. “[I remember] trying to pry open the closed minds of my parents (especially in terms of international travel– why its worthwhile, why I’m not going to die, the benefit of moving outside of the US, etc.etc.etc.).” -Natalie 
  10. Google the locations of the seven cities you’re going to be living in. And maybe the countries too. 😅