Sunday, March 30, 2014

Spring is Here!!

Well, I've packed away my winter coats and Heattech clothes. I've stopped wearing 5 layers to school and to bed. It's stayed consistently above freezing. That's right! Spring has arrived in Seoul!

This is like 90% wonderful and 10% awful. I shall explain why soon. 

Here's an update of my week. 

my mom sent me Reese's cups and they are

Flowers at school!

On Tuesday, we went out for Indian food.
This is garlic naan and it was glorious

Yes. I eat Indian food now.  Not the SPICYYY stuff, but I dig me some chicken masala. YUM. 

LOL one of my kids left their notebook in the
English room

On Wednesday, we went out for our monthly/bi monthly/random teacher outing. Originally, we were going to go see a movie (Captain America. Because we have more guys in the office. And a couple of teachers wanted to see something with action. And they joked they needed to see a foreign movie so I could come), but then on Wednesday morning, some teachers spoke up and said they weren't in the mood to see a movie cause they wanted to go home earlier. So we just went to get coffee at the World Cup Stadium. Which is fine. I guess. I got free coffee out of it... but it's a little exhausting to be out with all of my co workers when they're laughing and joking in Korean and then someone has to say "Oh wait, explain the joke to Christina!" The music/ethics teacher even asked me after if I was ok, and was like "I'm sorry, this was probably not fun for you!" I told her it was fine. It still is fun for me, because I do understand a tiny bit of what's happening, and it is nice to see everyone joking and laughing. And we got done earlier anyway, which was nice. And I found yet another Korean quirk that is amusing:

Yep. Women only parking spaces. Not sure if
they assume we can't walk that far what,
but it's still pretty funny. And quirky.

Sarah and I ended up dressing like twins. We
did not plan this

Pre Korean class margaritas. Because nothing
makes learning korean easier than a little
bit of alcohol! 

On Thursday, it was warm enough to wear my new short sleeved, floral dress, which made me SUPER happy!!

smiles and sunshine!

Unfortunately, the nice spring weather also brings with it the dreaded Yellow Dust, which is a mix of dust from the Gobi Desert and pollution from China, wherein lies the 10% not so great part of spring. YUCK. It looks like fog/smog during the day, and when particularly bad, can be seen building up on the cars. I'm feeling a little under the weather this weekend, and I'm pretty sure my pretty painful sore throat and stuffy nose can be attributed to a mix of the seasons changing, working with kids, and the Yellow Dust. 

Yum. I love breathing this in on my walk
to school.

So yeah, you all can laugh at my cat mask, but it's actually pretty necessary during the heavy Yellow Dust season. There's even a twitter page that updates me hourly on how the dust levels are in Seoul. Good times.

please note that my co worker's cups have found
their way onto my desk. THAT'S WHAT THE
LINE IS FOR!!!!!!!1

I love my 4th graders. They're enthusiastic and sometimes
give me cute gifts

After work on Friday, I met up with Janell and Lauren for happy hour (Sarah met up with us later) to relax and hang out, since we've all been busy with the new semester. It was a lovely night of girl talk and fun!

And nachos. The night was full of those too.

My lovely friends!

I had a super productive and great Saturday. I had a nice breakfast and coffee with Sarah, I cleaned my apartment, went grocery shopping, did a nice workout, studied Korean,  and did my laundry. WOW when did THAT become a wonderful Saturday in my life??

a sampling of my Korean books. I'm making decent progress.
I still sound like a 2 year old tho. 

so true!

On Sunday, I woke up and did a short workout (cardio is a bit rough right now with my cough/stuffed nose from the Yellow Dust, so I haven't been going as full out as I'd have liked to... oh well. gotta take care of myself too). Sarah and I needed some more things for spring and decided that we should head to Myeongdong. 

we saw this in the subway station. He's a
member of Super Junior, Sarah's favorite
Kpop group

His birthday is the day after her's. His name
is Eunhyuk. He's pretty cool.

So we shopped around a bit, but most importantly, we ate STREET FOOD. 

And we looked at shoes.

so many spring shoes!

Do I reaaaally need a BigBang Tarot Deck ?
No, but I seriously struggled with putting it down.

Then we headed back to Hongdae because we have been here for 7.5 months and Sarah has not yet been to the 1st Shop of Coffee Prince (ie, the shop where the drama was filmed), and we decided to remedy that situation today.

the sign

the interior

we were fangirling over the fact that it's stayed the same as
in the drama AND the fact that BIGBANG filmed their
parody there. We've sat where some of our fav Kpop and
K drama stars sat!!! 

my lovely bestie!

this is where their first kiss happens in the drama and it's adorable

(It was also my 3rd visit to Coffee Prince. Sorry, not sorry).

I didn't buy much today, but I got what I needed, so I'm happy!

Cat pajamas for summer, though it's almost warm
enough in my apartment to wear them now.
Look at the lil' cat takin a nap. D'aaaw

Seriously. My apartment, which hovered around  12- 15 degrees Celsius at best in the winter (about 55- 60), now stays around 20 or 21, which is about 70 degrees. 

they're puuurfect for me

And then I bought a pair of wedge sneakers, which I've wanted for ages and just couldn't find ones that I wanted. 

They're cute and make me taller. Win/win.

trying to show the design

I also needed a new rug for my bathroom

I told you. I'm addicted to skincare masks.
They're less than a dollar and make my skin
feel great. Come to Korea and you'll
fall in love with them, too! Plus I got free samples.
Yay service!

It was a slightly less eventful week, but still fun. Sorry ya'll. Some weeks I do lots of crazy cultural things, and some weekends I relax and shop with my friends. Hope it isn't too mundane!!

Also, Lauren, Sarah and I signed up for a new Korean class at a Korean Hagwon (private academy) called Ganada. It's on Tuesday/Thursday nights, because my other class is only once a week and I REALLY want to improve my Korean more, especially since I plan on staying at least another year. I'm studying more on my own, and I can tell I'm improving and understanding more, but still, I definitely need to go to class more than once a week. Hopefully after a few months of more intensive study, I'll be able to hold some basic conversations with my co workers and such. Wish me luck!

I hope Spring finds its way to you all soon, preferably with less dust and pollution! Stay tuned for more fun in the sun as the cherry blossoms will be in full bloom soon! I'm so excited!!

Also a big congrats to my sis for not only passing her thesis defense, but also presenting at a conference in Baltimore. LOVE YOU BELLA!!!

Kpop time!

My homeboys MBLAQ had a comeback this week and I'm really digging it. As usual. 

Mmm. Suits.  

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