Saturday, December 30, 2006

so much has happened here, at the same time nothing has happened.

i really wish i had stable internet access in my room bc i always have a million things i want to write about, but then i cant ever seem to remember anything by the time i get to the pc bang.

well, ive been still pretty much doing my own thing since i got here. tim's busy with work, so theres really nothing else to do but entertain myself. i try to do something every single day bc i know if i stayed in my room alone, i would go nuts.

yesterday i woke up and went to the Museum of Contemporary Art. it was fucking amazing. it felt so great to be in a museum where korean artists aren't just represented with one work of art, or just a special show. in this museum, it's mostly korean art with pieces of foreign artists here and there. i was so moved to see all the wonderful works of art, feeling a great sense of pride in them. there was especially one that really caught my eye, and it made me sort of obesessive about it. it's a piece by Hwang In Gi and it's kind of like a black folding screen that ithink might be about 15 feet wide, and there's nothing but pins on it and from that he was able to draw mountains. its a truly beautifl work of art, and afterwards i was in the museum gift shop for almost over an hour looking for any books, postcards, or other souvenirs that profiled either the work or the artist. unfortunatelty i wasnt able to find anything and i left pretty dissaapointed.

anyway, but the museum is in this huge ass park in seoul that also has an amusement park, zoo, and other attractions. it was so beautfil there and i was able to ride a ski chairlift thing from the museum to the subway, which is a very long distance apart. i took pictures of it all, but i haven't been able to find a voltage converter for my mac so i cant upload anything. also havent been able to find a voltage converter for my digi cam so that's pretty much out of batteries as well.

after that, i ate at this small restaurnt at the end of the chair lift and had what quite possibly could be the best sullungtang ive ever had in my life. it was damn good.

afterwards i spent the day walking around other parts of seoul, such as this large ass mall and another shopping center.

you know i'm pretty proud of myself at how self reliant i am about getting around this city. i pretty much am able to find everywhere i want to go, without the help of anyone. today i woke up and went to the financial part of town in hopes of finding the ONLY APPLE STORE in korea. seriously, no one here uses macs, they just dont. and when i went today, i found out that it's on the 32nd floor of this large bulding by the coex mall. i was so fucking elated to get off the 32nd floor and see that large sign for the apple store down the hall, and then when i got to the door it was fucking closed! i'm pretty annoyed by that because now i have to wait until tuesday to try and get everything i need. damn damn damnn.

i also met up with my cousin today in gangnam. she came to pick me up and we went back to her neighborhood in hongdae to go eat and then for me to go to her family's house to see her parents.

my cousin's name used to be sueng-lee, which i guess means victory. but then she ended up changing her name to joon-ha, along with her brother bah-wee changing his name to soething i don't remember. anyhoo, we went to hongdae and she took me to TGIFridays, which is a big deal here. the food was good, tasted EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE SHIT IN THE STATES, but i guess ultimately that's the goal of those type of restaurants. taste the same in every country.

afterwards we walked to her house and i saw her parents. i really love her mom, she's loud and loving  as she's talking to you, but because it's her i have no problem with it. i just felt instantly comfortable with her, and we shot the breeze for awhile. she wants me to come stay at her house, and wanted me to sleepover tonight but i told her i would come back soon with a change of clothes and all that. anyway, it was great seeing her.

okay, so a few days before i came to korea, i got a letter from the korean embassy about my military status. i have the letter to my parents, and they were like "OHHH GREAT THIS SAYS YOU DON'T HAVE TO GO TO THE MILITARY FOR TEN YEARS!! YOU CAN LIVE IN KOREA!" of course i was estatic about the whole thing, and i made all the plans on being in seoul indfeinitely and whatnot, hoping to find a job and shit. but then i showed that same letter to my aunt before, and she says that's not what the letter is about. she said the letter is about something totally different. and i guess the bottom line is it annoys me that my parents misinformed me about what the letter said. i dont even think my parents read the whole thing, just parts of it, but my aunt showed me where it clearly said that it has nothing to do with my miltary status. so i guess now, i definitely will be going back to the states and must start searching for a job there.

i mean, all this is fine because i guess it just wasn't meant to be for me to be in korea for a long time. but what if i hadn't shown my aunt that letter, and i just went about with my life and made all these life altering decisions here. that's what really gets to me.

so yeah, i guess this is a 3 month vacation before i start working wherever. yippeee! within the next few weeks, i need to go to travel agencies and book tickets and stuff to go to like thailand and other countries in asia. i'm pretty excited.

okay, well i guess that's all for now. as soon as i get everything i need for my laptop, i'll start posting pics and all that good stuff. i hate not being able to use my own computer.

ok, bye all.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

so this is my third day in korea. so far its been a trip. im still getting used to the culture and whatnot, but i think i'll be fine after a week or two.

i arrived here tues morning after a long 15 hour Korean Air flight. Korean Air (KAL) is an amazing airline. all the stewardesses are so nice, thin, tall, and pretty. they are really accomodating and amazing at their job. i hate flying in general, but the airline gave me the best experience ever. i highly endorse KAL if any of you guys are ever thinking of traveling to korea.

so i arrived here first thing in the morning on tues and my friend and her dad picked me up from the airport. i feel extremely lucky to her and her family because they treated me like a family member for the time i was with them. they live in ilsan, which is about an hour away from seoul by train and i guess it's like living in queens. i take a 2 hour nap when i get to their house, and then my friend's parents take me, my friend, as well as a friend of my friend to the DMZ. man, it was such a moving experience. we did the whole tour of all the museums and things there, and one thing that was pretty fun was walking in the '3rd tunnel.' in the 70s and 80s, south korea discovered 4 tunnels that the north koreans made under the dmz that go into south korea and close to seoul. its about 250 km deep, and it was pretty scary. another thing we went to was this looking point, which is the northern most part of south korea to look into north korea. the view was amazing and sad at the same time. there's an observation deck and you can look into binoculars and see all the villages and houses that are fake facades. everything is empty and you don't see a single person in sight. the whole thing was very moving.

after that my friend's family took me out to eat dinner at this restaurant that specializes in puffer fish. the soup was pretty good, but i felt really awkward about sitting to have a meal with them.

the thing is, i've noticed that this whole country is OBSESSED with weight and looks. all they talk about is losing weight, how to lose weight, what to eat, what not to eat, etc etc. now this is fine, but they talk about it in such neurotic and annoying ways, to the point where i just want to tell them to stfu. seriously, it gets old after awhile. and then after they talk about how theyre fat and have to lose weight and whatnot, they eat a fried ham and cheese sandwhich with globs of mayo, ketchup, and thousand island dressing in it.

but yes, i can not stress how crazy korean culture is about weight. my friend said that in the korean vocab, words for 'eating disorders, bulimia, & anorexia' don't exist. i thought that was pretty interesting. and everywhere you go, and watch on tv, there's ads with 1/2 naked people. and mann, the way girls dress here is insane. it's the middle of winter and you can't go 10 steps without seeing a girl in a miniskirt with high boots on. it's madness! and none of them are fat. seriously theyre all freaking sticks here.

another thing ive noticed about the culture is people are kind of rude. i dont know i guess i really cant explain it, and its different than ny rude, but i dunno it kind irks me. i just think overall that korean girls in korea have really bitchy attitudes.

so i'm staying at a hasuk in Gang Nam, which ive been told is a really upscale neighborhood. there are bars and restuarants everywhere, and at night the streets are lined with thousands and thousands of young people. last night my cousin timmy showed me around these neighborhoods and we went to a few bars.

so at one of the bars last night, i came out to my cousin. it was really hard for me, probably the hardest person i've come out to yet. but i knew i had to do it nonetheless, i couldnt stand the thought of spending 3 months here and not telling him. at first he was shocked and couldn't believe. he thought i was fucking around and initially even said that he doesn't want to believe it. but then he realized i wasn't kidding, and we talked and talked about it for the rest of the night. i really love him, and appreciate the fact that he's accepted me for who i am.

right now i rode the subway to hongdae and have been walking around alone for the past hour or so. i love walking around by myself and exploring the city. i'm at a seedy pc bang because i can't seem to get an internet connection on my computer, and cant even charge it because i havent been able to find a power adaptor. my camera, comp, and ipod are all pretty much out of batteries. i havent been taking as many pics as i would like, but i'm going to try.

i'll post the good ones up here, for the enjoyment of anyone who actually reads this, but also for me so i can read back on it a year from now.

okay, bye world.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

i'm at JFK waiting to board my Korean Air flight to Seoul.

i can't believe this moment has finally come, it's surreal.

ok i am freaking out though bc there's no stores open that sell magazine or sleeping pills. i am fucked.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

what does being in your 20's mean? i wish someone could tell me.

Monday, December 18, 2006

at the moment, i am trying to write my LAST college paper of my life that is due at ten in the morning. damn... i can't seem to get past the first paragraph, i have major writer's block.

what i really want to do right now is smoke a bowl and watch the 20th Anniversary Oprah DVD that my friend bought me.

so my college graduation is later today. yikes!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

i got a haircut and i look like t-boz.

damn damn damn. my graduation is tomorrow too.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

i'm done with 3 out of 6 finals, the end is near!

Friday, December 08, 2006

finally finished my senior work/memoir.

wow, i really can't believe that i'm actually done with it. it's surreal.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

my senior work, which is a memoir i'm writing, is due tomorrow at 4:30. unfortunately i still have a lot of work to do, but am sure i'll be able to finish it in time. it's just so hard doing it... i've had to do a lot of soul searching.

anyway, all my friends have been saying they expect to read it once it's done. i'm just not sure if i'm ready for that.