Wow, it has been a long time since I’ve written. I’m not really sure what has gotten in to me these days; I’m thoroughly enjoying myself, going through what has been (at least socially) the best stretch of my year here in Korea, have done tons of interesting things in the last month and a half or so, and yet cannot work up the energy to sit down for an hour or two and write things out. I think part of me has completely lost the desire to write about what exactly I am doing.
Since I last blogged, so much has happened: I finally made it to Seoraksan to hike the most popular national park in the country. I finally made some relatively solid plans for how I am going to spend the next couple months of my life: going to SOUTH AFRICA for the WORLD CUP (damn, that feels good just writing it!), then chilling in Korea for a month or so before embarking on an epic tour of Southeast Asia. The Celtics have finally decided to play up to their potential, earning themselves a spot in the Eastern Conference Finals and leading to me experimenting with a playoff “beard” (back home, it would only pass for glorified scruff, but in Korea I’m already approaching mountain-man/hobo status). I finally, after nearly two years of on-again, mostly-off-again reading, finished Atlas Shrugged (and still feel like it would work better as a 30 page short story).
All this, and I’m still not sure what I should be writing about. A couple of weeks ago, I went out to Hongdae with some friends on a Saturday night and somehow ended up backstage at a monstrous, head-banging DJ festival on the Hangang. That was pretty sweet, and confirmed my long-held suspicions that if you are an assertive foreigner in this country not willing to take “no” (or more usually, a confused head shake) for an answer, you can literally get away with just about anything.
Just last night, I met Rira and some friends from work and went to the Seoul Lantern Festival, a celebration of Buddha’s upcoming birthday that featured plenty of traditional clothing, dancing, awesome lit-up floats, and hundreds upon hundreds of camera-toting foreigners. If I was being completely honest, I should really include myself in that category, yet something about the fact that I’ve been here for a while made me feel like I’m more at home than those other meeguks. Actually, in the last week or so, Rira has started to inadvertently slip into Korean when talking to me, a phenomena she is chalking up to the fact that I am becoming more and more Korean the longer she knows me.
I still have blue eyes, curly hair, and am a foot taller than most people in this country, but maybe she’s right. Maybe the reason I haven’t felt compelled to blog about all the things I’ve been doing has a lot more to do with the fact that, after living here for nine months and enduring the ups and downs of the life of an English teacher in Korea, I finally feel like I belong.