I was surfing blogs this morning and I Got Two Shoes was blogging about cravings and things that she misses . . . and it got me thinking about what I miss.
Here's my list.
10. Easy and regular access to good dill pickles. I found some at the M department store in Chuncheon and bought the 3 jars they had. Did they refill their shelves--Noooooooooo! Argh! So as far as I know the only places I can get dill pickles are COSTCO, the foreign grocery store next to What The Book, and a few other places in Seoul--two hours away . . .
9. A bath tub--taking a long hot soak with some good music and candles while reading an awesome book (or not, and just vegging out). (And NO, a jimjilbong (public bath house) is NOT the same.)
8. A dryer. Not having to put my clothes on two racks and having to wait for hours if not days for them to dry. Also, they're always softer after using a dryer fabric softener sheet. In addition, they SMELL GOOD TOO!
7. Being anonymous when I walk down the street--put another way--not being stared at and talked about by most of the Koreans who see me.
6. Cheap good quality cheese, fruit, and vegetables. When you have to pay triple or quadruple what you'd pay back home for these items in Korea, it's not good for your bank account balance (especially with the damn exchange rate these days).
5. Mayonnaise--I think Miracle Whip is one of the best things ever invented (Julianne says it's not REAL mayonnaise--I ignore these bouts of temporary insanity, lol).
4. Being able to buy everyday things that I need: deodorant, soap, etc. (I usually have to do a run about once every three months to the underground market in Namdaemun.)
3. Access to English bookstores and libraries (I really miss my university's library). The bookstores in Seoul are too far away, and even then their selections don't have the range of books I like to look at, nor the specialized topics I need for grad studies. Add to the mix that there are very few used English bookstores . . . and it's just sad.
2. Being able to go out and interact with a large number of English speaking people from which I can find like-minded individuals--in Korea it usually ends up being, "Oh my god! You're a native speaker and I'm so happy I'm actually talking to someone with the same socio-cultural background and language that I don't care who you actually are and what you're into . . ."--well, not always and exactly like that, but the general idea here is that the pool of people we can interact with is very small. In some ways it's been good because I've become more open to socializing with people I wouldn't normally spend time with back home, and I think that's been a good thing for me.
1. Being able to see my family and friends back home--especially my sister who I miss a lot.
Anyways . . . time to go find something to do to occupy myself during the Korean February month of the blues that always seems to get worse as the month progresses.
Sunshine, walking around outside, taking pics, and keeping myself busy oughta do it--I hope.
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