Intrepid Girl Reporter


Friday, 4/25: the days of miracle and wonder
April 25, 2008, 6:05 pm
Filed under: Cheki, lists, MSYDP, photography, the future, travel

Post-travel recovery plans:

TOMORROW

  • get out of bed by 9 AM
  • call KoreanAir to reserve MSYDP tickets
  • mail package home
  • write another stupid cover letter for another stupid job
  • things I can spend money on: paying Arkansas back, book club, maybe one coffee wherever I go to work (which rules out Hollys, as is far too expensive), splitting hotel room with Oregon for the night

SUNDAY

  • start reviewing diplomacy simulation stuff for conference
  • plan lesson-ish
  • make list of stuff to do in Japan
  • no spending of money allowed

That list just took me about ten minutes to type. I sort of hate WordPress’s formatting a good deal of the time.

Anyway, on my travels, I bought this:

I AM EXTREMELY EXCITED. This is an excellent toy.

I realize that the whole Polaroid thing might be a little done already, and to be totally honest this was a complete impulse purchase – I was with my roommate from the Embassy internship, Wallenda, who had come to meet me in Daegu, and we were on the first floor of the Kyobo Bookshop and they had this beautiful display of cameras right by the entrance for people with no willpower, like me. To my credit, I managed to wait until I had bought a bunch of other stuff before going back and investigating.

The Cheki, at any rate, is unavailable in America, or so it appears from a cursory Google search. And Korea’s obsession with “name cards” (i.e. business cards) means that a million albums exist for them, which is convenient, as name cards are the exact size of the pictures my new camera takes. I bought the simplest one, which was also the cheapest; it wasn’t exactly cheap at ₩57000 (roughly $60 USD), but the only place I can find to get them in the US is eBay or lomography.com, which, not being exactly a discount site, sells a “special edition” for $200. Still, it was not money I needed to spend, and instant film is notoriously expensive, but it’s pretty beautiful anyway.

Anyway that makes three cameras I have here in Korea – my good one, my old digital point-and-shoot (which is what I took to the mainland this week) and the Cheki. I wish I could have my lovely Holga here with me, but I can’t use it until I live somewhere where they can process my 120 film. Hopefully that day will come sooner rather than later. I’m rather embarrassed that I’m not a better photographer, to be honest – I haven’t studied photography in any way since high school, and I’m always afraid that my photos are too dependent on trite emotional manipulation and rely on the same old tricks. Nonetheless, I’m excited to play with a new way of taking pictures (well, for me at least). There’s a big expat party tomorrow in Jungmoon in honor of the Ultimate Frisbee tournament, and we’re all going to celebrate Arkansas’ birthday and cheer on Soccer and Hallim. Oregon has urged me to have my camera make its debut.

The mainland was surprisingly wonderful. I ate candied strawberries and Italian food and had my feet eaten by fish in Daegu, I saw The Host in Yeongcheon with Grayshifter, I went to a sports day at Jeonju Girls’ High School, and I met my summer roommate and her friend in Andong. I got a lot of one-on-one time in, a lot of surprising bonding, and I managed to get myself around the mainland without getting lost, which is more than I can say about my home here on Jeju.

One final note: Interest in the MSYDP is almost unbelievable. We’ve gotten a truly staggering number of applications, and I’m really excited. From my own school, however, I’ve only received six, and the truth is that my students’ English is just not that good. I mean, I know I shouldn’t be surprised; I teach at one of the lowest-level middle schools in Jeju-si. At least one applicant from my school will go, and I guess the rest is up to the judges.

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2 Comments so far
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