Thursday, December 10, 2009

cold and rainy in Jecheon...

Well, I'm experiencing my first day at home alone... Ben started teaching today, he had to be at school at 2pm today and it's about a 15 minute walk. The first of what will be many walks to school this winter on a cold rainy miserable day. I'm anxious to hear how it went but he won't be home until around 10pm tonite. It's an odd schedule we're both trying to get used to. It's so odd it changes your sleeping and eating habits.

So I was all determined to get a ton done today, and I did get quite a bit but not as much as I'd hoped. Every little thing takes sooo incredibly long to do so it gets frustrating. Example: laundry. It has literally, no exaggeration I promise, taken me 7 hours to do one load of laundry (wash and dry) that is STILL NOT DRY YET! even with a small fan I brought from home blowing on the rack, AH! It just makes you want to give up cause it takes sooo long. I know it doesn't help that its raining out but seriously I have like 3 loads to go! And the simple act of running our washer makes our apt quite humid which does not help our black death situation. Speaking of which that was my other large task for the day, put on my cute pink rubber gloves grab my bottle of bleach and go crazy on our pit of a bathroom.

When we got home last nite from being away for a few days of training in Chuncheon, it dawned on me as we were walking down that ever creepy hallway to our little home sweet home it would probably reek of kimchee and mold; a vomit inducing combination if you ask me. Sure enough we opened the door and words could not describe the fumes that flooded our noses.

So it's almost 7pm and today I've paid some bills, washed 2 loads of laundry and at this point am willing them to dry, updated my FB with pics, sent a few emails, made my yobu a tuna melt sandwich with much needless effort (details below), and have now settled down for a moment to blog and make myself a bite to eat. Instant spicy ramen noodles and a cup of pomegranate tea mmm, all except that my lips are burning from the tiniest little bit of seasoning I put in. And soon enough I'll probably have unspeakable heartburn or a headache from the massive amount of MSG they use here in everything. I swear I can't find anything that doesn't have some serious heat or MSG in it. I bought some ginger tea thinking oh this is perfect to calm my stomach, its good for you, I like ginger tea this should be great. So I open the package and instead of the expected tea bags there are 4 bags of instant powder (the pom tea was the same by the way). This is a country of old school tea drinkers not instant coffee and instant tea and yet thats all I keep running into, what is going on!?!?! So the ginger tea was horrible! it apparently had something else in there that tasted nasty and it too was spicier then imaginable. It's just wrong, tea shouldn't be spicy. At least the pomegranate tea was good, I'm on my second cup of that and hoping I'll be able to get some real tea sooner then later, some toasted brown rice tea that was grown in rice patty down the street preferably.

I met a lovely girl the other day though, she's a sub teacher at our school. She is Korean American and her family recently moved here to care for her ailing grandmother. She has had a tough time adjusting to life here as well and all the more being an only child (albeit she's 21) but she was so kind to us and it just warmed my heart to meet such a sweet girl and I can tell we'll good friends. She's already invited me to go to out for lunch and shopping in downtown Jecheon with her and another native Korean teacher, and I'm sooo excited about that. Korean shoes beware here I come!!! But I so miss my friends from home... I miss you Kristin Field, get your butt on Skype already! ; )

Overall, though it's really a roller coast of emotions on a daily basis. The little everyday things seem so backwards and complicated here. Back to that tuna melt... so I open the can and after finding out its only ever packed in oil I had to drain and squeeze it out with my hands, I toasted the bread in our grungy old toaster I need to clean yet and then realize I had to wash a bowl to mix it all in b/c every last thing in this apt. is filthy to say the least. We don't even have real dishes, these odd plastic plates, two random grimy cups from Chester Fried Chicken (don't ask no idea and don't want to know how they got here) and a random assortment of plastic containers in which the rubber strip was molded out and/or had particles of food stuck on it. The degree of nastiness in this apt just blows my mind and is frankly overwhelming at the moment. I've scrubbed and washed the assortment of pots and pans I found under the sink twice now and still can't bring myself to use them for fear of acquiring a disease. I so wish we have a real dishwasher in which I could sanitize and destroy the filth that exists. But seriously our apt isn't so bad. It's got nice wallpaper, floor and ceiling molding, and window coverings. I really do like it, its cozy and we fit perfectly fine.

I'm very thankful for our situation and the school Ben's been assigned too but the details and the culture shock can easily be overwhelming... I'm learning to just let it go and not focus on the little stuff in front of me but to "lift my eyes to the hills from where does my help come" Psalms 121:1-2 and look at the bigger picture and in that light its all so much better. I can already tell our marriage relationship is stronger we will be better more rounded people for having had this experience and so we keep taking one day at a time...

thats all for now...

love and hugs,
Amy

4 comments:

Sara said...

Amy, I'm glad you met someone to go shopping with! :) That should lift your spirits, for sure! I know you always have a tough time finding shoes for your teeny little feet...maybe you won't have that problem in SK. Who knows?! :)

Anyway...sorry if I'm overwhelming you two with comments. I just enjoy reading this and letting you know we're still here for you (even if we're far away)!

Benjamin & Amy said...

we looove comments, then we know some one is reading. yay for shoes!!

Mark said...

Just found your blog. It's great! Ben's teaching hours are very strange. He really teaches little children until 10pm at night? Do you get to be a stay at home wife Amy? Aunt Faith

Benjamin & Amy said...

Hey Aunt Faith! yes Ben teaches until about 9:30 and its about 10 when he gets home. these kids study morning noon and night non stop so they can get into a good high school and then college but its the opposite of how we view college in that they slack of when they've made it to college. so all the early schooling is the part where they are expected to work the hardest. For now I am home but our director has asked me to help him with some volunteer work so I'm happy for that. glad you found us!