Daily Archives: March 10, 2012

Special Visits in Seoul- SOL

Each time I visit a new country, I’m excited to explore my new surroundings and go on various adventures, but usually I venture out alone or with my travel companion. It’s rare to visit a new place and see some familiar faces. Last week, when I vacationed in Seoul for Spring Break, I was fortunate enough to meet up with some very special people. Two of my former students, who I taught last year at RBIS in Shanghai, recently moved back to South Korea. They heard that I would be coming to Seoul, and emailed me right away with an invitation to see them while I was in town. The second special visit was someone I’d only met online, through the SOLSC this past month. Jee Young wrote a list slice with her bucket list of things she’d like to do before she leaves Korea, and I commented that I would be visiting Seoul soon. Through a series of comments and emails, we were able to connect and eventually meet in real life!

On Wednesday, I met up with Jong Hun and Ji-Won, my students, along with Jong Hun’s brother and mom. They were so excited to be skipping school to hang out with their old teacher! After taking the hour-long bus ride out to their hometown, they took us to a Korean Folk Village, which reminded me of Mount Vernon, only the Korean version. The village was full of old Korean homes and farms, complete with traditional Korean games and performances. I had a blast learning about such a unique culture! My favorite part was the dance/percussion performance. We stopped off at a Korean restaurant for Bi Bim Bop before heading off to Everland, a local amusement park. Everland reminded me of Six Flags Astroworld, an amusement park I used to go to as a young girl.

On Thursday, Jee Young invited us to go see The Hunger Games with her and a group of her friends. I couldn’t have been more excited! For one, I was able to meet Jee Young, and for two, I was able to see the movie on the big screen! I’m a HUGE Hunger Games fan, and since I live in China where we only get about 10 foreign films a year, I was disappointed that I would have to watch it on DVD at my house for the first time. A movie like that deserves to be seen on the big

screen! I absolutely loved the movie, and I can’t wait for the next one! I really enjoyed meeting Jee Young and her friends; they were all so welcoming and kind.

On Friday, our last full day in Seoul, Jee Young showed us around the Myeong Dong area, a winding maze of shopping and street food. If I lived in Seoul, I would develop a serious shopping addiction! As we walked from store to store, I was amazed by the variety of options available; a girl could really get used to this! Jee Young introduced us to Hotteok, a pancake filled with brown sugar and cinnamon (I think), and it was really good. After our shopping adventures, she took us to the elevator that would take us to the Seoul Tower, where we would later experience phenomenal views of the city at night.

Thanks Jee Young for your hospitality and generosity! If you’re ever in Shanghai, I’ll show you around! 🙂 

TBAs- SOL

What is TBA, you ask? TBA stands for Truths, Beauties, and Appreciations, and it’s a reflective exercise to see the truth, beauty, and appreciation in life! The exercise is to write 5 Truths- Things you KNOW to be good and true; 5 Beauties- Take time to notice the beauty in life- physical, nature, emotional; and 5 Appreciations- Things you appreciate. Here are mine for today…

Truths:
1. I am a reader and a writer.
2. I have more than doubled my number of slices already as compared to the March 2011 SOL Challenge.
3. I am a vegetarian.
4. My friends mean the world to me.
5. I am a traveler.

Beauties:
1. The sun is SHINING today!!! This is the second time in a month, so it’s a big deal.
2. My Starbucks mug filled with peach tea sitting next to me as I write
3. Smiling and being content with the world around me
4. Checking off things on my to-do list
5.My cooking class kiddos with their endless enthusiasm 😉
!
6.Flowers!
7.That this is my 10th slice!!

Appreciations:
1. I appreciate Skype conversations with old friends. I’m a lucky girl- I had 2 this morning! 😉
2. I appreciate 30 minute (or more) taxi rides to tutoring because I get an hour of time to read or play Scramble with Friends.
3. I appreciate listening ears.
4. I appreciate the joy of reading a new book and loving every minute of it! (If you haven’t read Wonder yet by R.J. Palacio, you really should put it in your stack!)
5.I appreciate my iPad because I always have a book with me waiting to be read!
6.I appreciate being able to finally purchase my flight to Seoul!
7.I appreciate the many opportunities I get to travel!
8.I appreciate soulful conversations!
9.I appreciate my writer’s notebook!
10.I appreciate getting to do whatever I want this weekend!
11.I appreciate the SOL writing community and the encouraging comments they leave!!
12.I appreciate being able to engage (digitally) with so many like-minded people
!
13.I appreciate my home in Shanghai as well as my one in Texas.
14.I appreciate massages!
15.I appreciate Starbucks!