a breath of asian air?

I didn’t disappear off the face of the earth, I just have been attempting to graduate. I’m still attempting, but in the meantime I’ll go ahead and tell you what all this South Korea business is all about.

I signed a contract.

I’ll be teaching English to Korean middle schoolers starting this June. Yes, in 5 weeks. I’m signed on for a full year. That’s 365 days of kim-chi! Continue reading a breath of asian air?

Lessons Learned About Myself in Argentina

book coffee happiness

When you travel, especially when you travel by yourself (as I am currently doing), you learn a whole lot about yourself. You also learn small things, such as how to get around on public transportation, how to use and find maps, how to pack your backpack more efficiently. As helpful as these lessons are, though, they aren’t the real ones. The real lessons are about who you are and what you’re like, separate from home and perhaps despite home. These are the lessons that I am talking about.

Five personal lessons that I’m willing to admit to:

I am Cheap

I am really, really, really cheap. I buy the same three things when I go grocery shopping for a few days of food: bread, bananas, and sandwich meat. This usually costs about 20 pesos, or 5 US dollars. When I have the choice between reloading my card to take the bus or not, I won’t, and then I’ll end up walking 35 minutes uphill because I just couldn’t bring myself to spend the extra pesos. I also get uncomfortable when someone talks about going out to dinner; that’s for rich people.

I am Physically Lazy

When given the choice of two activities, one that involves physical activity but is worth it and one that doesn’t, I will generally choose to be lazy. If asked, I will claim that I like the former.

I Always Get Lost

I will, inevitably, without a single doubt or exception: get lost. No I am not joking. It always happens. Need to get to my hostel? Lost. Need to find the grocery store? Lost. Trying to find that one museum? Lost. This wouldn’t be nearly so bad, except for the next point…

I am Stubborn

One of these days I am going to wake up half transformed into a mule, like Shrek. This point plays into all of the other ones: I am stubborn and won’t spend money (hence being cheap) and if I get lost, I won’t ask for directions more than once. Even if I don’t understand the answer. If someone invites me to do something that I’m clearly not physically fit for, I’ll accept their invitation and then push myself to do the whole thing. You know, since I already claimed I would. My family can attest to this and now that this is on the internet, I really can’t argue when they say, “I told you so!”

I Only Need Two Things: Coffee and a Book

I could spend a whole day reading and writing in any cafe and I would be content and caffeinated. This may or may not be the first thing I do when I visit a city. Does this make me a bad traveler? Maybe, but I don’t care and I’m vividly aware of my lameness. Thankfully, that also means extra good posts for you guys to read!


What has traveling, backpacking, studying abroad or just visiting a foreign country taught you about yourself?

You can also find me on the ABOFA Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter. There’s also an email list, if you’d like to subscribe.

Featured Photograph: Yellow and Grey

My feet in a city park in rdoba, Argentina.

(RIP my favorite grey Keds)


You can also find me on the ABOFA Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter. There’s also an email list, if you’d like to subscribe.

tri-lingual observation

I use google reader to follow multiple newspapers at once, including some spanish and german. recently, while reading through my general feed of headlines, I’ll suddenly make the switch between a spanish story to a german story.

it freaks me out when I don’t notice.

I’m glad to have my comprehension coming much more quickly, but I don’t know if I’ll ever get used to that feeling: suddenly realizing you’ve read half an article in a language you hadn’t been reading 3 minutes ago. it feels like my brain just stuck it’s brain-fingers into a socket and jumped. yeah, my brain hurts.

of course, it’s more or less a good hurt.

28 days?

it’s hard to believe it! I kindof don’t. but my remaining time is really filling up; I’ve got a trip to cedar point, camping, 21st birthday celebrations, regular birthday celebrations, mom’s infamous cow appreciation day, regular volunteering… all on top of my work schedule. time is absolutely going to fly.

to do before I leave:

eat a gyro
pack my room up into boxes, all of it
pack, of course
learn a few more random spanish words (la ama de casa!)
read 2 more books

annoying things I need to do:

get meds for the whole semester
straighten out my phone data plan situation
dye my hair, again (this blonde just won’t die)

four weeks, here I come