Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Fall fall fall...Finally

Field trip with kindergarten to a farm...where Britney Teacher and Nathan Teacher really enjoyed the hay ride...maybe more than the kids?

Hay ride, wooo!!!

Feed the goats!

The students dug the fields for sweet potatoes- quite fun to see their pride in discovering even the tiniest, ugliest little sweet potato (Example A: Jamie, above)

He was quite the go-getter

Workin' the fields

Good thing you're wearing your mask, so that you don't breathe in the clean, fresh, country air. Makes sense.

Yes, she actually wore those pink bunny ears at school. All day long.
And no- it wasn't for Halloween.

Happy Birthday, Jamie! Cute as a button in his little bow tie

I love my Jamie :)

The birthday paparazzi- Mommy and Lily Teacher

Well, don't you look handsome in your little hankbok, Sean.
Vicky looked like a little American girl doll in her hanbok
Somebody put on their crabby pants this morning...
We made seongpyeon, traditional rice cakes for Chuseok.
Chris was very proud of his.

Making the seongpyeon: all you need are big blobs of glutinous rice and some red beans!
Vicky and Kelly in their hanboks, the traditional dress

" Teacher, my crown seongpyeon!"

Crystal- so very ghetto?

I have cute kids.

Finally- the cold and blustery autumn evening I have been awaiting for weeks now. The perfect autumn evening, in fact. Leaves swirling aimlessly in the wind. A chill that makes you stamp your feet as you impatiently wait at the bus stop and intersection. Rosy cheeks and cold skin upon entering a warm apartment. Good thing I was ill-prepared for such an unexpected autumnal arrival- I was caught in my Birkenstock sandals and little other protection from the biting wind. And yet, I had no problem embracing it. Fall, I love you.

Heat, goodbye- I have had quite enough of you. As a Minnesota denizen, I must experience the coldest, most testing of conditions again in order to thrive. Korea, I know you have that in you. Humidity, good riddance- I will not experience you in Korea again. There will not be another summer here...for me, at least. Henceforth, the cold is all I shall know...for here begins the stretch of my last four months in Korea, a stretch that will carry me through the winter until I leave this frigid peninsula for the equally frigid flatlands of Minnesota in early March (and I do hope for the extended Minnesota winter...I've got my eyes on the prize of squeezing in some Nordic skiing once I return- wait another year to ski again? I think not). How strange to think of my time left now as fitting into this neat little package of months that I can count on less than one hand...a neat little package of a single season. How has time arrived at such a point, yet again?

The fall thus far- or what we have referred to as the fall, despite the lack of autumnal weather- has passed me by in a whirlwind of new friends, new experiences, and even new emotions. Was I naive to think that all new, terrifying, and confusing emotions would surface within the first full year of living abroad? Absolutely. September and October...oh, what you have taught me and where you have brought me. I recently experienced, for truly the first time since being here, an utterly frustrating and defeating sense of annoyance and dislike for Korea: the masses of people, the sharing of personal space, the waiting in lines, the cultural taboos. I always knew it would be inevitable...and honestly, I've been feeling both happy and scared that it's taken so long to finally experience it. the sense that I have wholeheartedly enjoyed discovering and experiencing and living "Korea." the sense that I perhaps loved it too much, that it would keep sucking me in until I finally opened my eyes 5 years later, wondering where the time had gone. So I guess I feel grateful for these dissatisfied feelings...this is my gut, telling me that March is my go on home.

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