Thursday, April 24, 2008

Dig down deep.

Unbelievable. I am almost finish with my third month of teaching. Unfortunately, I've been getting into a routine and need to put a stop to it. My weekends need to be filled with new exciting adventures with plenty of pictures to upload... ^_^ (Asian smiley face)

A big event has happened within the two and a half months that I've been here... I have located my biological mother.

Intense, isn't it? My thoughts and feelings are mixed at the moment and have been since I first found out about the possibility of meeting her. It has been about a month that I have known...but I have not written a letter to her.

My biological mother is married and has two other children ( a boy and a girl, both younger than me). Her husband knows about me so there isn't any hesitation that she wants to meet me (at least that is what the social worker at SWS said). She doesn't speak English so a translator will be necessary for the initial meeting. I don't know when I will see her face-to-face, but the first step is to write a letter to her with a photo or two of myself. It's strange to think that within any amount of time I could be staring at the person who gave birth to me 21 years ago. A person, whom I should have memories of, but don't.

What questions do I ask? What do I say to this stranger? It's a lot to think about.

I haven't really had a lot of time to stop and consider what I want to say to her. Work keeps me busy. I have two jobs now. I'm working full-time at Espirit and then part-time at Pagoda, teaching a business conversation class early in the morning (EARLY!!!!)

I get two three day weekends in the month of May, a much needed break. Although, I have no clue what I want to do during that time, but I am pretty sure I will be able to find something to get myself into.

This past weekend, I went on a hike up this semi-mountain...AKA a really big hill with some rocks and grave sites. It was refreshing and enjoyable although the grave sites were a little strange.

Weekend before that, I went to Club Volum in Itaewon and had a 'lovely' time. There was some kind of strange "lady boy" show...and dancing....and lots of light....and alcohol.

I love spring.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

A Month has gone by...Really?

Two weeks ago, I had a very interesting experience. I opposed, at first, to going but I finally agreed...I considered, it's Korea and I should be experiencing new fascinating things.

So I went to a Korean bathhouse / sauna. I'm usually a modest person so having to undress and shower in front of a number of strangers was a bit shocking and disturbing at first. When I arrived, the woman at the front desk gave me two small orange towels, some clothes to change into (to be worn after the shower/hot tub) and then proceeded to show me where I needed to store my shoes.

Next thing I know, I entered into the main part of the bathhouse for women.

So there I was, trying to communicate with the woman that I don't know how these "bathhouses" work. Eventually I bought a scrub and body wash to use in the communal shower. I found my locker and slowly began to undress...trying to avoid eye contact with the naked women. I walked out of the locker area, revealed all of my glory and managed to keep a straight face.

Then I entered into the showers and began to wash myself. Before I came, I was told that it was going to be a relaxing experience...I saw no signs of relaxation yet. It was very busy on this Sunday evening. Many women were washing each other while sitting on plastic shower seats. This concept was strange to me. Some women even managed to get a massage as well. I took my time washing myself, trying to pay attention to what the other women were doing, all the while, feeling very self-conscious.

After washing myself two or three times I got into the hot tub. Very nice...I've started to relax by this point. Then I decided to head into the sauna and then the nice cold pool.

I lost all track of time...Finally, I managed to go downstairs where there were other saunas where men and women could mingle. Adam and I went into this room where there are hot little clay balls that you lay on. It was great...

We left. I went back the next Sunday and will probably go again in the future.
Life in Korea has its ups and downs. The job is nice, but it can be exhausting at times. I'm ready for vacation time and travel. In May, I have two three-day weekends because of Korean National holidays.

Last night, was the Espirit dinner. Fun was had...First time I've ever gone past the tipsy stage. After dinner, a number of us went to an "All That Beer" establishment..not a big beer drinker but they had tasty sausages.

Then we went to a Norae Bang.. ^-^ (yes, I just made an Asian smiley face...) It is a singing room where people go with their companies or friends, that is a lot of fun. I have some video footage of some of the events from last night so once I can get them uploaded to the Internet I will let you guys know.

Next time, I will try not to let a month go by before I write again.