Thursday, October 28, 2010

Six months in

Can you believe it! It has been six months since we first arrived in Korea and were greeted by the stark realisation that we couldn't read anything, couldn't talk to anyone and couldn't find any decent sized towels to dry our cold behinds, that all seems like so long ago. OK, finding a decent sized towel is still a bit of an issue but we can read relatively well and we are starting to have really broken-awkward conversations that we can semi understand, YAY!

we can read it! Can you?

In six months we have done a substantial amount. We have gone to festivals that blow your mind with their awesomeness, like the Lotus Lantern Festival and the Andong Mask Festival, we have had a chance to be little children and run around one of the world's best amusement parks, Everland and we have stuffed our faces with delicacies that we are already sad we will have to say goodbye to.

I could list all the cool places we have been to or tell you about the amazing festivals we have attended or brag about the greatness of the food we have tasted but I simply wouldn't be able to sum up all the awesomeness. So here are some of mine and Oliver's typical photos in some of our favourite spots.

At the Lotus Lantern Festival

On Gwangalli Beach in Busan

We went out on a limb and decided to take on and experience a new culture and we have never been happier. We are experiencing life from a different point of view and I think we are both growing from the experience. No, no, I am not going to get all soppy on you and start playing drama music while I tell you our life's lessons, I just think Korea has changed us in subtle but good ways.

Living the life of an expat is interesting. We have met people from all walks of life...young, old, Irish, American, and even fellow South Africans. Many of the other expats are truly intelligent, thought provoking people that are not afraid to get hammered, be opinionated, and have a good time. It really has been fantastic to meet so many interesting people.

Brock and Lauren

Daniel and Lisi


Rob and Chrissie

The one downside is when people leave, you find yourself just getting to know someone, or already semi-attached to them and POOF their contract is up and they're leaving on a jet plane. In my opinion, this is one of the hardest things about expat life.

Another hard aspect is missing things from home. Being in Korea while our country hosted the greatest world cup in history was a difficult time for us as we had both witnessed how much blood and sweat South Africa had put into the event yet we weren't there for their shining moment. We have missed friends and families and we have realised that no matter where we are in the world we will always have this uncanny longing for Africa.

On a side note, I have also found myself missing South Africa's juicy, succulent steaks.....Mmmmmm. (Pause a moment and salivate a little bit).

Ok, it feels like I am just blabbing now but I think you get the point...we have loved being in Korea and our blog is a testament to the amazing travels and experiences we have had and continue to have.

So, what's next? Well....our main highlight in November (other than the fact that it is Oliver's birthday) is that we will be visiting the DMZ, I can't wait. Our highlight in December is that we are heading back to South Africa for 4 days to celebrate an beautiful couple's wedding....January, well in January I plan to try my hand at ice-fishing and we will be going on a temple stay! February....hmmmm, probably more fun in the snow (Oliver can't wait to get his hands on a snowboard). In March we will start getting our stuff together for our end-of-contract trip. April, Oliver's mom is coming over for a visit and we start to pack up our little abode (sniff sniff) and then on May 3rd our contract is up! doesn't seem that far away at all.

Then it's another stopover in South Africa for my big sister's wedding (This was only finalised a day ago so shhhhhh, it's our secret). Then it is back to Korea to show Oliver's dad around Korea and then...wait for it...and then we will be doing a two month backpacking trip around Asia which should be absolutely epic!

I hope you have enjoyed the stories, photographs and information that we have given you over the last six months. This blog started out as a way for friends to be kept up to date but it has turned into our baby and we hope that for the next six months of our Korean Adventure you will continue to enjoy our perspectives on life and everything else from a small peninsula in Asia.

Post by Claudia


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