Thursday, May 27, 2010

Nine-month mark

While there have been ups and down over the last nine months in Korea, I feel like I've stumbled on a pretty big down. Everything has been bothering me lately, and most things are going wrong.

School is being bothersome. The youngest kids are going wild, and the older kids have all grown attitude problems. The end of the semester is here, which means it's once again time to scramble to get everything wrapped up and ready for the next term, so the office has been thrown into complete disorder. Additionally there are new teachers, people getting ready to leave, and a whole new desk arrangement, all of which only add to the chaos.

It's also local election time here, so the candidates have been going crazy. Instead of a deluge of television ads (which I could stand, because I don't have a television), all of the candidates are out on the corner of the main streets, greeting people and blasting poppy music with altered lyrics to support their campaign (songs include : "If You're Happy and You Know It Clap Your Hands" and "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer," sung by children who shout the candidate's name in every break). It's just so strange. Also, there are choreographed dancers with matching outfits. So strange.

I went to dry clean my blanket (last time I tried to wash it myself I burned a bunch of it because it barely fits in my washing machine). I thought it wouldn't be a big deal, but it takes them three days to wash a blanket. THREE DAYS. And when I got it back, it smelled like old meat. Sometimes it's the little things like that that end up pushing you over the edge.

Then there's the realization that I have so much to do before I leave, and I have so much to plan for (Jeju Island, a China trip, SE Asia, Trans-Mongolian, just to name a few). And with the Korean trips I still have to do that I missed due to illness.... It's just starting to get overwhelming.

I know that most of the things going on here are small annoyances, but they're starting to add up. It doesn't help that some of my older children are trying to tell me that war is going to break out at any moment (I don't think it is, by the way).

I'm hoping that a big weekend at the International Mime Festival will help blow off a little of stress, so I can re-focus on everything I have to get done.

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