The Friday before the weekend trip (so four days ago) my friend Toni, who has appeared on my blog numerous times, gets an email from one of the girls we know from Yonsei Christine. (She is one of the people who took us Colgaters out to Somri Chicken and noraebang that one time :) ) She is running the Free Language Class (FLC), which is exactly what it says it is. Studdents (both Yonsei and International) teach their native language to a group of interested students. I’m in Christine’s Korean class, as a matter of fact. So she needed an English teacher to teach English to a group of Yonsei students. Toni was all, “Alright. Cool. But it seems a bit overwhelming. Do you mind if I have someone help me?” Christine says yes. Enter me. I am all over it. It’s a wonderful opportunity to meet Yonsei students. Unfortunately, international students are highly segregated from Yonsei students because we take our classes in English, we live in a separate dorm across campus, and most of us can’t speak Korean well enough to join a club or something like that. So I was in.
Last night was FLC orientation. All the people who were taking all the languages show up in the lounge, the teachers introduced themselves and then we went out to dinner. Lovely. I was in a bit of a pickle because I’m in a class as well as teaching a class, but I chose to stay with the class I’m teaching because it’s easier for me to talk to and meet the kids in the Korean class (they all live in my dorm anyways) and the Yonsei students have to trek an hour plus on a subway just to get to Yonsei and hang out. Best choice ever.
There are five girls and five guys in our class. Two girls and three guys were able to go out to dinner with us. Their English is fabulous. They don’t need us, really, except to practice their already exceptional English skills. We ate bossam and then got some ice cream at Lotteria (it’s like Korea’s answer to McDonald’s). The guys are so funny, and their sense of humor translates into English, which is super impressive. They are all a little shy, but they are so genuine and patient with us. (We speak English too quickly - must work on that.)
We plan on going over the basics in the first class, as well as doing some get-to-know-you games. Since our class is from 5-7, we are going to do dinner for one hour and teach classroom style for one hour. Since we did Korean dinner last night at orientation, we are going to do American dinner tonight, something like PB&Js and salad. Toni and I are going to make dinner. Are you excited? Because we sure are.
But actually, this is the best idea ever.
Me with my newly manicured nails. (I am le spoiled in Korea.)
Funny story that was today. Funny in that it amused me, not funny as in laughing out loud. (Who even does that anymore.)
This morning, I went to le yoga as per the usual. It was not raining today, but I eyed the sky suspiciously and brought my umbrella regardless. I left yoga a bit faster than usual, however, because today our study group went to Holt School to observe and interact with the students there. They are all mentally handicapped. My group got to go to the library and read to the kids. I did all my reading in Korean, I’m proud to say. I can’t understand very much, but I can read like a boss at a third grade level lol. That was a rewarding experience, but exhausting.
We took the bus home (we took the train there) and it was over a hour of jerking stops and acceleration. I am not a fan. We didn’t eat lunch near Holt, so then it’s like 3 o’clock and we haven’t eaten in 6 hours. Crankiness ensues. We finally make it to Sinchon and I’m past the point of hunger. I just want to get my nails done (the green was looking pretty shabby). Our professor is going out to lunch with some of the kids in our group, so they go their way and I go mine. As I go through the tunnel into Sinchon proper, a Korean guy passes me. He says something, 아름답습니다, I think, and I turn around as I’m processing that. He turns too and says, “You’re very beautiful.” I melt a little, naturally (who wouldn’t), and reply, “감사합니다,” (thank you) and continue on my merry way, a bit merrier.
I get my nails done, always a success, and decide to take the Ewha way home. I have actually never done this before, but I know there’s a Paris Baguette along that way and I was really hungry by this point. Who do I run into in where of all places and who happens to be working? It’s my professor and company in front of my Bubble Tea joint and guy I awkwardly introduced myself to is working, of course! So I say hi to them, show off my nails, and wave to Bubble Tea guy (next Thursday I’ll ask for his name, I promise lol). Too many coincidences. It makes me smile. :)
The preparation steps for my first date (tee hee) with 슬기 after the fireworks last Saturday. Where everything went better than expected. ^^
Also known as That One Time One LIT Messed Up 3 People at TGIFridays.
Photos 1-3: This is Kelsey, Toni and I at TGIFridays pre Long Island Iced Tea.
Photos 4-6: This is Kelsey, Toni and I post Long Island Iced Tea. There was only one. And we all split it. And then we were in the bathroom trying not to look drunk when Koreans came in. In all fairness, the bathroom was like wall-to-wall mirrors (including the inside of the bathroom stalls). It was mad disorienting. And that LIT was not kosher lol. There’s no logical way that that drink was up to code.
We were absolutely DYING for Western food & although a little pricey, we decided to go to TGI Fridays. I was in heaven.. The food was delightfully fulfilling (maybe even better than American style TGI Food) and needless to say, I felt home, for the time being anyway. (& of course I went with the lovely Kelsey & vivacious Olivia!)
No happy hour but they did have this colossal LIT and you know me, I HAD to get one… A slight problem due to the fact I am maybe 98lbs and this drink had NO
cokeor sweet & sour mix. I needed them to help me finish it and by the end of it.. well, as the Coreans say, we were “drunken”
There’s that LIT. Deceptive bugger. Thank you, Toni! ^^
This man. This man is affectionately called Scarf Guy. Why? Obviously because he sells scarves. Look at all that quality merchandise. I have gotten a scarf from him on more than one occasion, and I like to think that my friends and I are building quite the relationship with him.
Funny story, we haven’t really seen his face. He’s always wearing the mask, glasses and hat, so we have no idea what he looks like. Then one time he didn’t have the mask on, but we could only glimpse a low, profile view of him with his back to us. Creepy? I like to call it thorough. For now, his identity remains a mystery. But we know where he will be, from about 4pm on, and the adventure continues.
The Cactus Museum at Lake Park! It almost felt like being home lol.
I met a person on Kakao yesterday. Kakao talk prompts you with people you may know, and I got prompted and the person’s photo looked familiar so I added them. We started le Kakao-ing, and that is all well and good. Then I realized their profile photo is of the guy in the top right of the top photo (one in from the right in the bottom one). I’m all, “Oh, it’s GO from MBLAQ (a k pop group).” Of course I recognized this person. I watched MBLAQ’s song “Mona Lisa” on repeat for a week. (It reminds me of the James Bond Casino Royale theme song, the one with Daniel Craig.) Of course it isn’t actually GO from MBLAQ, you can put whatever you want as your picture lol. That was an awkward moment.
In conclusion, this person is not GO from MBLAQ (a little disappointing), but they are an MBLAQ fan and I get to practice my Korean on an actual Korean person (also practice using google translate lol), so in the end, I think this situation is a win.
Oh hey. I’m living in one of these Tom and Tom places, but it is FREEZING in here. I’m so unhappy. Why is it so cold, Tom and Toms? Why?
I’m feeding my need to consume green tea lattes, and finishing up my papers, and using their wifi. But I seriously have to get out of here soon. My fingers are ice and I might catch my death in here. I refuse to wear my coat indoors. But I am wearing my scarf now. This is so wrong.
Funny story: This is literally like the third Korean I’ve seen come into here (I’m on the second floor) who has sat down and went to sleep. How do they do that? They get a coffee, grab a table, set up all their books and just sleep there. It’s finals week and all (through next Wednesday), but really? And then they wake up suddenly and continue working like it’s the most normal thing in the world. Maybe it is kkk. Anyway, it made me laugh.
Also, that’s not my photo. I got it here: http://fizzyhasan.wordpress.com/2011/06/25/seoul-busan-backpacking-2011-coffeehouses/ ^^