06 November 2011

The Little Things

The long work hours, the daily commute on public transportation so crowded you have to experience it to believe it, the constant state of perplexity caused by the simple fact that you cannot read, speak, or understand the language, the sense of isolation that comes with living so very far away from family and friends. These are some of the reasons why living in Seoul can be stressful.

Thankfully, I am lucky enough to work with a great team of teachers who help keep me sane. The fact that I am able to commiserate with them is something that was gravely lacking at my last job in Seoul. Moreover, I am inspired by my students every day. Just knowing that I've had an impact, however small, on the lives of these children, makes it all worthwhile. When Se-Eun gave me an unexpected rose the other day, I thought to myself, "This is why I'm here."

I also find myself taking refuge in the little things.The truth is, despite the stress that comes from living in a sprawling metropolis and constantly feeling lost in translation, there are also a lot of little things that I like about living in Seoul. One of those things is shopping! I went shopping near Sungshin Women's University after work on Saturday and I found these very cute earrings. They may not be extravagant or expensive, but this made me happy. Honestly, it doesn't take much...

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