Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Land of the Flying Time

Well, look at what we have here: spring! Although, you all know how I feel about spring. (Or do you?) It's so manic-depressive. I'm cold, no I'm warm, no I'm windy, let's have sunshine, let's have rain, hahaha fooled you! it's snowing again!, are you warm yet? Wanna go on a picnic? Too bad - it's 35 degrees (fahrenheit). And so on like that. To all of my fellow Phoenicians who bemoan Arizona's lack of four seasons, don't. Three of the seasons are great, but that fourth one is just a little tease. I hate spring.

Anyway, now that it's warmer, and we've established that by that I mean not-freezing-every-single-day-although-I'm-still-wearing-a-jacket-but-we-can-actually-go-hiking-even-though-we-still-turn-the-heat-on-at-night-sometimes, a thought has occurred to me: Time is flying!

Brian and I have now been in Korea for almost three months! Three months ago today we were sipping wine around the Grand Rapids Christmas Eve table pointing to Andong on the atlas and contemplating 2011. And now, 2011 is nearly one-fourth contemplated.

Some highlights:
  • Brian touched Asian soil for the first time. I figured out what it's like to come back to Asian soil.
  • I have also figured out what it's like to live in Korea without starving. Which is to say, with my allergy to seaweed I decided to eat a bit of meat this time around instead of being the hungry vegetarian martyr. I'm shockingly more content than I was in 2005-06! Go figure!
  • We went to Japan! Oh, beloved Japan. So sad about the devastation there. Hiroshima is one of my top ten cities in the world since our Lunar New Year vacation there. Lovely Japan.
  • I'm newly digging Anderson Cooper. Watching CNN International is so much better than flipping by CNN in the states. I have started checking in with my buddy Anderson somewhat regularly, as he is on at the perfect sitting-around-checking-Facebook-eating-a-late-breakfast time here.
  • I have not been reading nearly enough books in 2011. What's up with that?
  • I'm surprisingly content kicking it in the small city of Andong, although we do go away pretty much every Saturday. Mostly we've been going to Daegu, where we had our little weekly Korean class. 안녕하세요! 이름이 린다 예요. 미국사람 이에요!
  • We also went to Yeongdeok and the southeast Korean coast one weekend, to attend the Yeongdeok Snow Crab Festival. Yes, it was awesome. We stayed the night at an oncheon hot spring bath/guesthouse.
  • Spent a day or two in Pusan, one of my other favorite cities.
  • I had my first Korean ski trip at the High1 resort in Gangwon Province, not too far north of Andong. It was certainly cold, but I loved our Overlook-like hotel and had a great time with our awesome boss and his wife.
  • There has also been plenty of noraebang action. A Korean stint without noraebang action would be totally unacceptable.
  • The only real dismaying news at all is that there WAS a Dunkin' Donuts in Andong, up until a few months before we arrived, but it was gutted and turned into some dumb clothing shop. I've had to settle for getting my DD fix when we are in Daegu or other big cities. There are plenty of coffee shops in Andong, just no DD. Brian and I are weekend regulars at Rosebud, in downtown Andong.
  • Other things we have enjoyed in downtown Andong include but are not limited to the street food vendors (we have our favorites), the downtown market, Andong jimdak (spicy chicken stew) in the downtown market, and the hangover soup place.
And so it goes, and so it goes.

When are you coming to visit?

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