April 28, 2011

Police Station Field Trip

This month's field trip was to a police station. The kids tried on miniature uniforms, got to check out a police motorcycle, and saw this huge room full of screens steaming CCTV. In Korea, they have a lot of CCTV (closed captioned television) which monitors the streets and most buildings. It was totally creepy seeing the other end of the camera.

This is the new KE class - if you remember pictures of the former KE students. I am their homeroom teacher.

KA, the youngest kids, waiting for their turn.

James, he is in KE.

KA on the bike!

Ruby and Anna from KR

All of KR

Jinny in KA.

Ally and Matthew in KE

Walls of screens.

Hope everyone back home had a great Easter, by the way. Thanks for all the cards and candy!

April 24, 2011

Dinners and Drinks

One of the facts of life in Korea is that good friends come and go. My close friend Geoff went abroad for a few weeks between contracts and Corinne is going back to the states in a week. Lately, we've been eating out and celebrating all the time we have left together. This has infringed on my time for cultural outings, but it has been well worth it! Here are a bunch of photos from the last week or so.

Geoff and Chevelle at Big Shovel for Korean barbecue.

Sharing stories

See? They cook it on a big shovel.

Chevelle, Geoff, and Laura

Geoff and Corinne

Goodbye hugs all week!

Chevelle, Corinne, and I went to Seoul for the weekend.

We rocked the Korean "fashion glasses" for the night. They are fake - lenses without prescriptions. A lot of Koreans wear them, which I find mildly humorous, but it was fun to wear them for a night.

I met Yeonyi, Geoff and Chevelle's friend, and think she is fantastic.

We slept all day on Sunday, haha.

We went out for movie night at Communes, since Geoff flew out the following morning.

After a week or two of good byes, we had to say our actual goodbyes, hah.

Chris and I

Movie night, hanging out.

One thing I've learned in Korea is how quickly you can become close friends. Life aboard is a different situation, and you learn to appreciate the time you have together. Geoff and I have become fast friends and I am sad to see him go. He's introduced me to a handful of amazing people, and we always have a fantastic time together. Luckily, he will be back before the end of my contract! I'm looking forward to having him back in Daegu.

April 17, 2011

Gyeong Ju Round Three

This Saturday Chevelle, Laura, Chris, Siawn, Michael, Mara, and I went to Gyeong Ju. I've been twice before already, but its such a beautiful city, I don't mind going again and again.

We walked through an ancient forest, climbed some trees, and saw giant fields of flowers.

Bulguksa Temple

Seokguram Grotto

It was a wonderful day. Sunday was spent volunteering at the orphanage - playing some very hardcore soccer - and going out to dinner with the other volunteers for Corinne's farewell dinner. It was a nice to see the volunteers outside of the orphanage, and they took us out for a fabulous meal. Another weekend flew by and was well-spent.

April 11, 2011

Corinne's birthday weekend

I've been so busy lately, that I've neglected my blog. Today I had to update, however, because it was someone special's birthday.

Corinne, of course.

We went to the salon during the day, out for an amazing dinner, and then out on the town. First, we had to sing birthday-themed songs in the noribang (karaoke). Next, we took some Korean-style photo booth pictures.

Off to MF for cake and drinks.

Chevelle, Corinne and I

Corinne's friend Chloe was kind enough to bring a shirt for all of us to sign (of course I wrote about a paragraph). Rui, on the right, is rocking one of Corinne's birthday gifts (the bow on the side of his head). I think he can pull it off.

Chevelle, Becky, and Laura

Chevelle and I being silly. I will spare my loving family the partying photos, but can ensure that a good time was had by all.

~ ~ ~

The next morning, nine of us girls decided to go to the cherry blossom festival in Jinhae. Surprisingly, we all made it to the station on time and had a fabulous trip.

How many hung over ladies does it take to decipher train times?

First goal of the day: figuring out how to get home.

We saw the Jinhae Tower, and decided to hike up it. It was beautiful. We got some great views of the city and ocean.

The six of us, brave hikers.

We went on a walk to find the bus station, but climbed a tree instead.

The eight girls I went with, after realizing that we waited for the wrong bus for an hour, since none of us bothered to read our tickets.

Its been a whirlwind, I feel like 2 months have passed since my last update. I feel so thankful and appreciative to have met so many wonderful people in Korea. My group of friends here is supportive and understanding, and most importantly, likes me for who I am. It really is a life changing experience- moving here and being able to become friends with people from all different fields and countries. Don't get me wrong, I miss my friends and family back home every day - but my life here is full of love and positive people, and that makes every day I am here a good one. Lately I've really started to understand that true happiness isn't fleeting - I am happy with my life and the person I am becoming, and that makes me feel so much more fulfilled than I can describe. I've been happier scrubbing floors and windows lately than I have doing much more interesting things in less happy times. I've always believed that life is what you make it - and I have to say, that my life is pretty fantastic.