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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Alison's Korean Favorites

We had our "official" going away party last night, and I think it made me feel nostalgic. So, I'm jumping on Sam's bandwagon and making my own list as a way to recap the year... and possibly to avoid packing. In no particular order at all, here are my fav. things about Korea.

1. Noreabang! This one is fresh in my mind since we were just there like 10 hours ago. I know they have them in the states, but these are literally on every street corner here. The noreabang is karaoke, but in a private room and with full control over the song selection. Glorious!

2. Public transportation. Dallas needs to get on this, stat.

3. Mandatory recycling. Most apartment buildings and public places make it ridiculously easy to do this, which has made me be more concious.

4. Our friends. I haven't had a job where I worked with so many people my own age in a long time. And with everyone living so close together it's a little bit like college again, and who didn't love college?? More than that, though, we were lucky to work with a really great group of people, all of whom I actually like! Plus we have some rad not-school-associated friends.

5. Korean kids. Sure some are punks, but so are 12 year-old boys everywhere. They make me laugh every single day. And while I don't think that teaching is my "calling" I have really enjoyed it this year. Plus Korean babies are THE cutest.

6. Not understanding what's going on around me. Sometimes this place still seems like an adventure. But mostly it's a LOT easier to deal with people yapping on their cellphones in public places when you have no idea what they're talking about. And also it's really fun to shock people when you DO know what they're talking about.

7. Olympic Park. I love having a park within walking distance. I'm really sad I won't get to enjoy another spring/summer there.

8. Sharing food at restaurants. It makes meal times so much more fun and festive feeling. And you get to try more food! It might not be the most hygenic, but it's scientifically proven (by me, obviously) that sharing germs builds community. I apologize in advance if we're at home and I randomly take things off your plate without asking.

9. Express buses. I guess this goes along with public transportation in general, but express buses have Greyhound beat like nobody's business. Big cushy seats, lots of leg room, they make a cross-country trip an actually pleasant experience. Plus, they're cheap and leave a convenient times.

10. The hoses hanging from the cielings at galbi restaurants. So genius! I mean, you can have 20 in-table bar-b-ques going at once in a relatively small space and it never gets smoky in the room. Plus, they are cool to look at. I also just realized that I've never really taken pictures at a galbi restaurant. We'll have to remedy that this week!

11. Markets. There just isn't really anything like Dongdaemun or even Insadong at home and I can wander these places for hours just looking!

12. Won. It's prettier than the dollar.

13. Pretty much everything Sam said, too.

Okay, after I eat some lunch I'm REALLY going to start packing. For real. Because we leave in a WEEK, people! Seriously, this time next week I will be waking up in Cambodia. And I haven't even finished the Japan recaps yet!

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