Intrepid Girl Reporter

no need to argue

My well-documented dream jobs:

1) Working for Sesame Workshop

2) Being Geoffrey Canada

3) Other things along those lines

4) Chubu*/breeder of beedogs**

Today it is raining on Jeju-do, and I am starting to think, with the change of the seasons, about the fact that I may very well need to find a job next year. The big “if” at the heart of my Teach for America deferral is making me uncomfortable – and that doesn’t even take into account the fact that after my last class today, in which this stupid eighth-grader with a perm and a navy cardigan proceeded to imitate my manner of speaking RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME, I am tempted to never look at children again.

I can’t go to grad school next year. I’m not sure that I want to spend another year in Korea, either, to be honest. I didn’t expect to come here and make American friends, but much to my antisocial surprise, not only do I like everyone on my little island, they – and my family – are what is making my experience what it is. I’m not sure if I could come back knowing that it would be different. Nothing gold can stay, as those famous poets New Found Glory said.

Which isn’t to say that everything is perfect, obv. The extended blog hiatus is largely a result of a trip last weekend to Busan, one that proved rife with misfortune. An abbreviated list of what happened:

– got lost looking for “love motel”

– slept on a round bed

– had entire crew of Program Kids come to the area of town where we were, only to find that there was nothing to do, felt guilty

– found that four tickets bought for Busan Film Festival were useless due to the absence of my co-teacher’s ID number

– saw documentary on butoh, Japanese performance art that exists “on the far edge of death” (yes, really)

– took ₩15,000/half hour cab ride that dropped us off in the exact wrong part of a town we did not know, a part that had nothing but a Trump Tower, some construction, and an apartment building called “Golden Towers” that was actually gold

– took bus ride to Lantern Festival in Jinju; bus ride was supposed to take one hour, ended up taking THREE AND A HALF; meanwhile, Program friends left after us, got there before us, in some sort of space-time warp I don’t care to contemplate

– stayed in this motel that I’m pretty sure was the setting for Psycho

nearly got in fights with: movie ticket clerks who would neither allow us in the movie nor give us a refund, old gross motel man who tried to charge us extra after the fact

– got lost at Lantern Festival

A lot of these, of course, were classic travel mishaps, adventures that – even at the time – seemed funny. Others weren’t quite as humorous. The mixing of the kids from the Island and the rest of the Program caused me some apprehension even before we got there, and the big group dynamic ultimately caused an anxiety attack enough that I had to go home. I’m comfortable with the fact that I have social anxiety disorder, even though I hate the name, and I’m okay with occasionally recusing myself from certain stressful situations; it’s something I’ve come to terms with. Other people, however, are not usually as used to this information as I am, and having to explain why I’m doing what I’m doing is not my favorite thing in the world. There were issues of other sorts as well; I’d love to be able to dish like a real anonymous blogger, to discuss the ups and downs of love, of emotional involvement, of relationships and entanglements and accidental, unintended heartache, the fact remains that this blog is only anonymous to a certain extent – i.e. most of the people who read it probably know who I am. So. Suffice it to say that things have been harder, but they have also been easier.

But the world spins madly on; there was a woman who befriended us as we searched for the subway in Busan, and ultimately told us that the next time we were in Busan we should stay with her and her family, and a restaurant owner who, seeing our sweaty and tired faces, plied us with weird creamy soups and kielbasa covered in mayonnaise, on the house. (Which is good, because we wouldn’t have paid for it.) I spent almost the entire weekend with G and E, and on the way from Jinju to Busan we traded music and watched the mountains.

So I’m not afraid of the future, and I’m not afraid of the present. Apprehensive sometimes. But not afraid.

*Just kidding.

**Not kidding.


3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

amen, sister. i don’t think i’m blogging about the weekend; i’ll just send them the link to yours. 🙂

Comment by elizabeth

omg beedogs. i’m going to join you on that next year when i don’t have a job either.

and, to quote jon farinelli after you got lost at the lantern festival, “they’ve got rocks in their heads.”

love you guys anyway :0)

Comment by Niks

is the first line of your last (full) paragraph a weepies reference? if so, props. i want to hear about this pusan nuttyness in person, obviously.

Comment by lostarkansan

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