Work in Progress

“In the best travel, disconnection is a necessity. Concentrate on where you are; do no back-home business; take no assignments; remain incommunicado; be scarce. It is a good thing that people don’t know where you are or how to find you. Keep in mind the country you are in. That’s the theory.”
–Paul Theroux

I'm just a girl who loves the world, finds beauty in the unknown, and can't keep her feet on the ground. I like finding unique (and cheap) ways of making my way around the globe. Interacting with people while living, learning, and loving the culture I'm surrounded by.

This is my attempt to keep my friends and family updated, to keep track of my experiences, and to serve as an inspirational resource for all those travel addicts like me out there.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

There's a storm a brewin'

My apartment on the right
Normal. It's wild to me how normal everything feels. I've set my heart on being in Korea for so long that really, it just feels like I've come home. It's been relieving. I  didn't hate Las Vegas exactly, especially the last few months I was there. I was so happy spending my time with people who love and care about me, making amazing memories - because I knew I was leaving. I am so thankful for the memories I have to hold on to - with new friends and old friends alike.  If it wasn't for the people I surrounded myself with, there probably wouldn't be much for me to miss.
Coming into this experience I was most excited about my job. A REAL job hasn't been on my agenda for over a year, since before I left for Europe in  June 2013. I can't explain how ecstatic I am to finally be putting the past few years of studying in affect. I have a job that I am passionate about. A job that makes me feel like I am making an impact. One that is always challenging me to be better, for myself and for my students. Teaching English isn't just something I want to do for a year to get away - this is a career choice. A life choice. To finally be taking the first step towards my future is exhilarating. 

Edward the Snow Prince blowing out his birthday candles

And my own apartment! Which is paid for by my employers? The best. It is bare as hell right now, and will be until I get my first paycheck - but it's MINE. Soon enough it will be decorated in memorabilia from my travels and cheap furniture from Gmarket. It will really feel like home in no time. I am even sewing my own pillow cases.

I love living alone. I'm such a loner on the inside, it's nice to be able to come home and not worry about anything and to have my own space. Mine, mine, mine. Anyways, I have a friend right next door if loneliness ever creeps up. 

This week there is a typhoon headed straight for Japan, my next door neighbor. It's missing us, thankfully - but we are still getting loads of rain and lightning and thunder and I LOVE IT. It's ironic, because Vegas is having similar weather which isn't typical for them at all. The weather here, although humid, is a refreshing change from the Vegas heat.


My first month here is going to be very grounding. I don't get paid till August. I'm on a budget where won't be able to do all the things I want to or, more importantly, EAT all the things I want to. The good thing is, I have plenty of time. When I first got here I was excited about going out and experiencing EVERYTHING. I've now realized that's not going to happen all at once. I want to be here for a while, there is no rush. I have time to learn the language and discover the country, and more importantly Ulsan - my city. I have time to eat at every whole in the wall restaurant my that lines the streets of my neighborhood. I have time to travel to other Asian countries, but I'm not going to make that a priority like I first intended too. Instead, after I'm done living in Korea I would rather save money and take a chunk of time off to travel. 6 months should about do it :) A long weekend here and there simply won't cut it for me anyways. That's not enough time to fully explore a country, or even a city for that matter.

Korean Pancakes - kimchijeon and panjeon
Anyways, Japan is on the agenda for August. Let me tell you how damn exciting it is to be planning my trip and figuring out what I want to do while I'm there. I'm starting with Couchsurfing. That's the way to go. Free, number one. And you get the chance to meet awesome locals who always show you a different side of a city. Not your typical tourist agenda. Sign me up. I'm taking baby steps with Japan. It's close to my home and flights are cheap. I want to explore every nook and cranny of that country, eventually. For now I'm sticking to Osaka, Kyoto, and other places in the Western Honshu region. I definitely need to check some cultural experiences off my list.