It's strange how much stuff can get done in a single week, especially when you put your mind to it. I have my D-2 Visa, I have all my clothes, I have my flight plan, I've completely cleaned my room so that people who come visit my mother will have places to put their stuff, and last of all, I've got my stuff packed up. The time has come upon me.
I reflect on this moment with a strange sense of indifference. I remember when I left for Japan, and I remember it being alot more exciting and emotional, with tension in some places, aggrivation in others, uneasiness and an over excitement for the wait, but this time around, it just seems like its coming. Maybe it's all the paperwork they've thrown on me these past few days, maybe its the fact that I'll be leaving my mom completely alone this time around, or maybe its the fact that last time, I was cutting all my ties and responsibilities and starting completely over, becoming a totally different person, whereas with this experience, I'm able to keep doing the stuff I'm doing, like writing a blog or watching TV, but doing it in a completely different country.
Actually, I think it's because I've already traveled and lived in another country before, so the expectations and mystical dreaminess that accompanied me on my trip last time, the questioning what's going to happen and what it's going to be like, is not there.
That being said, I have no expectations of things in Korea. I've prepared differently than Japan, which I didn't really prepare for by any means of the word, and I think I'm a little more ready to show up there than I was in Japan, but mostly I'm thinking that it's going to be just enough like Japan that I understand why and how things work, but just different so that I get all confused and don't know what I'm doing. :)
Anyway, I post all this indifference and stuff the day before I leave, in the morning nonetheless, which means that the actual excitement hasn't really hit me yet, maybe. I mean, I have all day, and all night, and then tomorrow I meet up with Marie and Jim, the others going from PSU, and we carpool up to Seatac. Maybe when we actually get on the plane and start the trip, things will be different.
Actually, now that I think about it, when I left for Japan, I didn't really know what 10 hour plane flight over the Pacific Ocean felt like, but this is even longer, and since I can referrence a 14 hour flight in my long term memory, that might actually be the reason my body is remaining indifferent...because it knows that I have plenty of time to get worked up :P
So, as you can tell by the date, I have a little more than a week left until I embark on my journey to Korea. Most of us are feeling pretty anxious about the situation because it seems sorta fly-by-night-ish, since we haven't heard anything about our flight information and our PSU coordinator decided that she was going to go on vacation. It's been some confusing hell over here as far as that goes, and I'm getting real tired of everyone's question: "When does your flight leave man?"
But in other news, we went clothes shopping, so now I have the best collection of assorted T-Shirts and slacks than I've ever had before. However, this all reminded me that I once had a goal of losing a bunch of weight before I go, and apparently I did not, as I had to buy the biggest clothes on the planet. So, don't be surprised if I'm doing a lot of dieting in Korea.
As much as I dislike Taekwondo, I may end up joining a Taekwondo club while I'm there, if nothing more than for the exercise. I mean, it would be really cool to study a martial art from there while I'm there -- like I did when I was living in Kotoni and Sato Kyoudai was willing to teach for free -- you know. Besides, I really like those papers that say things like, "Honor" and "Praise". I know it takes years for black belts, but who knows...
...Maybe I can find a nice Hopkido place. That's Korean Aikido, which probably wouldn't be that bad.
Mostly I just want exercise. All this is moot while I sit here on my couch and talk about what I'm going to do in Korea. It would be more productive for me to fill out more stuff from the "Maximize Your Study Abroad" book. I should get to that.
This is the first post of my posts during my time in Korea. I just spent the day at work, but during my hour lunch break, I drove out to the Post Office and sent my Passport, my D-2 visa application, my acceptance letter to Ulsan, my proof of scholarship income, my TaLK Contract and the letter from PSU explaining my enrollment in the program to the Korean Consulate in Seattle. Everything is out of my hands now, but it's winding down.
So, that's about it. I still have to buy the last of my supplies, but I'm pretty much ready to leave. Myself and the others have been communicating about how to get to SeaTac and when we'll meet up, but it looks as though we will all be leaving separately. Meh, I guess that's the way it goes.
Mountain Dew Drinking, Japanese and Korean speaking, story writing nerd who doesn't exactly spend all his days in his basement doing nothing, but don't be surprised if you find my laptop filled to the brim with downloaded TV shows like Battlestar Galactica, Dark Angel, Supernatural, The Wire, or the occasional anime. I lived in Japan for 2 years, and lost a whole lot of my manga/anime fanatacism, but I also learned to love Manga. 2 years in Korea reminded me that I can do the impossible.
I've got the perspective, if you are willing to listen then I'll give you low down on whatever you want to know.