Warm Weather and Good Vibes
May has been a good one.
I finally feel like I’m really past that weird funk I was in at the beginning of the school year and the strangeness of starting again has worn off.
I’m still as busy as ever but exhausted after a long day of actually doing things is a good kind of tired.
We’ve actually had quite a few days off/special days this month including sports day, a field trip, and two national holidays.
Sports day at my school is probably my favorite day of the whole year.
Each class dresses up in a different costume and compete for the grand prize of money that they can use to have a class party. The competition is fierce. There is always lots of fun and lots of crying.
I was given this little chick springy headband thing that I ended up forgetting was on my head and walked home with.
It was a lovely day and, compared to last years rainy sports day, the weather was perfect!
The next day all the grades had their field trips and I went with the grade three kids to O-World. Which I have now been to three times and I imagine will go again next semester. The “Flower World” area is really pretty but the rest of the park is pretty bleak. But the kids have fun so that’s all the matters in the end!
The beginning of May was still decidedly spring with cool nights and mornings and day time temperatures in the low 70’s. Now though, it’s pretty much just summer. The mornings aren’t all that refreshing any more and the afternoons are incredibly hot.
But despite the afternoons getting upwards of 85/90 degrees the school still has yet to turn on the AC for the first time. I am eagerly awaiting that day. They’ve been cleaning all the filters so I feel like it’s coming.
I can’t complain too much though because at least I’m not huddling for warmth around a cup of instant coffee just to keep my hands from freezing anymore!
And it means that we can go back to all of our favorite rooftop/outside restaurants and cafe’s! Which of course we did promptly as soon as the weather permitted.
After a momentary bout of “I want to give up” on Korean and feeling entirely hopeless in the face of my upcoming TOPIK exam I went out to buy a few more study books that are more level appropriate for me.
Also, I missed the registration for the July exam so I’m going to wait to take it in October. But I think I need that time anyway. Because holy cow TOPIK II is so much harder than TOPIK I. And my barely passable conversation skills pretty much don’t help me at all when it comes to the complicated grammar, writing, and graph sections.
As per usual I’m enjoying the grammar but have hardly started the vocabulary. How on earth do people force themselves to memorize vocabulary, I truly cannot understand it.
One of the highlights of the month was one evening after volleyball when we all decided to go out for Korean BBQ because it was a national holiday the next day.
I had been feeling pretty low about my Korean speaking skills because of one not that great experience earlier in the month. But this evening with all the volleyball regulars who are kind and patient and actually take the time to be interested in me as a person was so refreshing. It was exactly what I needed.
So much of speaking a foreign language is how comfortable you feel around the people you’re speaking with. And on this particular evening I found myself being able to tease and make jokes way more quickly and funnily (is that a word?) than ever before.
This picture below is one of my teammates showing me how to make some drink where you literally mix together beer, soju, and cola in some crazy cup layering technique. It tasted about how you’d imagine.
That’s about all I’ve got for May. Like I said, it’s been a good one. I’m happy to be feeling better, more comfortable, and more motivated to get back writing and studying Korean.
Thanks as always for reading! Hope your May was good as well!